Date Published 18 February 2019
Selling your property can be a bit of a long process at the best of times, but it can definitely drag on if you're not generating enough interest – especially during these long winter months.
When selling a home, many homeowners tend to avoid certain seasons under the impression that the spring and summer months are the best time to put your home on the market. While the warmer months have historically seen more activity for property transactions, how you present your home makes a larger impression than when.
For those of you with your home already on the market or considering selling during the winter months, we discuss a few steps you can take to get more buyers in the door and prevent your home from looking as miserable as the weather does.
This is something that's important regardless of what season you put your home on the market, but especially vital in the winter months. First impressions count and the winter weather will do its best to make your home look a little more run down than usual, so you need to stay on top of maintaining the exterior.
Keeping driveways and paths as clean as possible is the best start, there is bound to be all sorts of dirt, rubbish and leaves blowing around in the wind so just take a moment to tidy up every now and then. Unfortunately, there isn't much you can do about the rain, but if you do get the opportunity to give the windows a clean then go for it. Snow can be a positive at times as it may give your home a very cosy, festive look, however, be sure to tackle any hazardous icy pathways just to be safe.
When the days get colder and darker, we usually tend to forget that our gardens exist for a few months and pick up on the maintenance just before spring. However, if your home is on the market, a cleanup of the garden can go a long way. This doesn't mean you have to get out there and begin renovating your garden with new plants and features, but it does mean that the garden has to appear as if it hasn't been forgotten about since the BBQ in August. The more neat and tidy your garden looks, the better, give anything that's overgrown a trim and any outdoor furniture that's been battered by the weather should be removed or replaced.
Make The Most Of The Situation
While it may feel like you're fighting against dark days and dreadful weather to make your home more appealing to buyers, there are some ways that you can use this time of year to your advantage. The objective here is to make your home feel like the warm haven that buyers will be rushing in to escape the cold.
Lighting, similar to a property's kerb appeal, is another factor that's vital regardless of the time of year, but when it starts to get darker around 4 pm, opening the curtains to try and flood the room with natural light isn't really an option. However, you're not completely out of luck as the right type of soft ambient lighting around the house can create the right sort of welcoming and cosy atmosphere that you're looking for.
Keeping your property clean is also imperative. It may become tiring cleaning your home after every viewing, but it's definitely worth it. With the weather being wet and windy, both you and buyers are certain to bring an amount of mess on the bottom of your shoes, so get a good doormat to prevent it travelling throughout the house and vacuum daily.
As we've already established the key to increasing your home's appeal throughout the winter is to keep it clean, tidy and make it feel warm and inviting at the same time. But there are plenty other little ways to make your home more attractive.
Firstly, you should inspect your home for all of those odd jobs like creaky doors and small marks on the wall. A bit of paint and WD40 can do wonders in making your home seem like it's all in working order. The bigger the list of small fixes for you, is a bigger list of small fixes for the buyer and only adds to the ‘reasons not to buy' list.
Normally during the warmer months, we'd advise opening as many windows as possible to get the fresh air in, however, when its minus 2 outside that may not be an option, so try and introduce a pleasant scent such as fresh coffee or a subtle plug-in air freshener.
Also, the greenery outside may be turning brown, but that doesn't mean you can't add a few decorative inside to make sure the home feels full of life.