As the warmer months of Summer give way to the changing leaves of Fall, how a homeowner goes about selling their home changes, too. Along with the usual cold-weather month home-selling tips – lots of light, keep the front entryway clear of dirt and debris, making sure the furnace works as it’s supposed to – there are holidays to contend with as well.
A homeseller certainly doesn’t have to be a grinch during the holidays – everyone likes a little tinsel now and again – but going overboard might dampen the good cheer of the season if the house languishes on the market.
Here are a few things to keep in mind for Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.
You may have been the house in the neighborhood that everyone looked forward to seeing. A giant spider on the roof, cobwebs on every nook and in every cranny, or elaborate graveyards staged on the front lawn.
But if it’s time to sell your home, you may want to dial it back a bit. If your home is festooned with decorations for a week or two – along with the time it takes to set everything up – interested home buyers won’t get a good idea of what the home looks like. Zombies rising from the grave is an awesome Halloween sight, but not so great for the curb appeal.
Some jack-o-lanterns near the front door or a ghost or two hanging from the gutters is fine of course, and makes set-up and take-down that much easier. It will also allow potential buyers see the true look of your home.
The chance of a homebuyer knocking on your door Thanksgiving Day is as rare as there being any leftovers of Grandma’s famous stuffing after a day long of eating. In addition, Thanksgiving doesn’t have quite the decoration pull of a Halloween or Christmas or Christmas, either. Adding an extra leaf to the dining room table and a kitchen that is in constant use over a 24-hour time period is about it.
That doesn’t mean there is zero chance to sell your home during the end of November. Buyers looking during November aren’t just looking to kick proverbial tires, they need to find a home fast. Either for tax reasons, they’ve just relocated for work, or any number of other reasons. While they won’t come calling on turkey day, the days before or the weekend after may be fair game.
So, if you are selling your home, rethink having family or friends crashing at your house during the 4-day weekend. No matter how clean they are, a few extra pairs of feet (and their luggage) will make for a crowded home and not the look you want a potential buyer to see. Suggest nearby hotels or other accommodations that will make more sense during this time of November. They won’t feel like their imposing on you during this stressful time and you won’t have to feel like harassing them to hang their coat up.
Fighting over the wishbone is another story.
At the end of December, schools are out for winter break, family is visiting, and holiday decorations are going up. Of course, the chances of selling a home during this time is going down.
But that doesn’t mean there isn’t a chance at all. Potential homebuyers that are forced to look during this time are obviously eager to find something, so a few changes to the usual holiday decor might get your home sold.
Putting up a Christmas tree is fine, of course. But maybe leave messy tinsel in the box, be selective with ornaments, and dial back the lights to present an understated, but still beautiful, tree. The same goes for the lights on the outside of the house. Cars may come from miles away to see your Christmas colored masterpiece, but just like Halloween, it will detract from the actual look of your home.
While they may represent your deeply held beliefs, you may want to rethink religious symbols like a manger or menorah on grand display. Yes, this is the season where you and yours come together to reaffirm cultural ideas, they could be off-putting for some home buyers.
Which brings us to the last thing to consider when selling a home during the holidays: do you really want to do it? Yes, there are homebuyers during this time of the year and yes they could be motivated. But if your idea of the holiday season is non-stop gatherings and having family stay the night (or three!) during this time, waiting until January may be in your best interests.
No matter when you want to sell your home, Rowena Lusby is the Realtor to call in Clark County. A proven industry leader, Rowena is consistently ranking at the very top of her peers and number one within her company. With 30 years of sales, marketing and negotiating experience, Rowena is the one to call for any of your real estate needs or questions. Contact Rowena today!