I didn’t have any requests or questions this week, but with winter approaching, I thought this might be a good opportunity to share some tips for marketing your home this winter.
First and foremost, you are probably asking yourself, or asking your agent if you should even keep your home on the market through the winter at all. This has to be answered only by you, though in my opinion, if you are not planning on traveling to Arizona for the winter, why not? Sure, I understand a winter sale and moving in the winter can be a hassle, but do know that most buyers probably feel the same way. There’s always a good chance a leaseback could be negotiated easier than you might think. If you are planning on packing up to a warmer climate this winter, what are the expenses of keeping your home operational, such as keeping the driveway cleared of snow and heating expenses? This is where a very serious conversation with your realtor might be a good idea – if you are maintaining a quarter mile of road all winter for the purpose of helping to bring a sale, that could get expensive. On a final note, we all know the inventory reduces substantially during the winter months. It certainly won’t hurt to use that lack of inventory to your advantage, with less competing listings on the market. Believe it or not, homes do still sell in the winter months. In the summer of 2013 from June to October the county absorbed about 94 home sales. Last winter, from that November through the end of May there were about 131 sales according to the Teton Multiple List Service! Now that I have you convinced, check out a few tips and tricks for winter marketing below.
- As mentioned above, snow removal is key. Not very often, but I have been in the position where a buyer simply wouldn’t look at a house because of the amount of snow they would have to track through to get to the property. A little bit of ice melt or sand on the steps doesn’t hurt either.
- Heat, buyers don’t want to spend too much time in a house that isn’t very warm. Programmable thermostats can be a wonderful thing. You’re probably already used to turning your heating system down while you are away, simply program the thermostat to warm things up 30 minutes prior to your showing time. If you are an absentee owner, consider a smart thermostat you can turn up remotely. This is also a great way to monitor the temperature of your home without being there as well.
-Use holiday decorating to your advantage. Don’t overdo it, but tasteful decorations can create a comfortable atmosphere for most buyers.
-Utilize timers, it’s a great way to create a welcoming and cozy feel. Just like using your thermostat for your fireplace or furnace, it’s a great way to have a crock pot come on before a showing. Don’t overload those timers though, they can only handle so many things at once safely.
-Open those heavy shades. Many of us use heavy curtains or shades to act as an insulator in the winter time. If you have a showing though, it doesn’t hurt to leave them open for the day. Winter is already dark, let some light into your house.
-Clean up the yard. Winter brings a white blanket of snow that creates a very clean look throughout the valley floor. However, it shows, how do I say stains – very easily. We all know about that yellow snow that our pets make for us in our yards.
Here’s to a busy winter season!