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Although many sellers shy away from listing their home in the winter months, there are two big advantages to a winter sale:
1. Motivated buyers
Buyers shopping for a home from December to April tend to be more committed to the purchase. Chances are if they request a visit at your home, they’re not “just looking”, like some people do during summer open houses.
2. Lower inventory = Less competition.
With fewer listings on the market, winter buyers have fewer properties to choose from, making your property a hot commodity.
That being said, there are a few important steps to follow when planning for a winter sale:
1.Go lighter and brighter
It’s essential to brighten up your home for Winter open houses and visits. Declutter, make sure every room is well lit when receiving buyers, and repaint your walls a light, neutral colour before listing your property.
2.Stage for the cold
Stage your home to make it feel warm, comfortable, and welcoming. Most importantly, make sure your home is sufficiently heated during scheduled showings. You’ll want buyers to feel comfortable so that they can take their time and appreciate your home’s features.
3. Maintain Curb Appeal
Selling a family home or townhouse during winter also requires more attention to your facade, driveway and front porch. You may not have the advantage of a well manicured lawn during winter, but you do your best to make sure that first impressions are good ones. Salt your front steps and the path leading up to your door to make sure that the ice isn’t dangerously slippery. Porches tend to get messy at this time of year with mud and puddles from winter boots- so take 15 minutes before the showing to clean up the front entrance and welcome mat. You might even consider buying a second, brand new welcome mat that you pull out only on these occasions. Secondly, make sure your windows aren’t fogged up or icy. And lastly, make sure the snow on your front path is shovelled so that your entrance is easily accessible.
4. Create a mood during open houses
Buyers may be braving a snowstorm to get to your showing, so make sure they feel welcomed when they finally get there. Winter is the perfect time to take your open house hospitality to the next level by serving your open house guests some wine or a hot drink when they arrive.
To attract buyers to your home during the winter, pricing your home at fair market value is essential. Start with an evaluation of your home’s current market value: