During the winter months, when the days are shorter, the property market is known for slowing down, but this doesn’t mean that buyers stop searching. If you’re thinking of selling a property in winter, follow these top tips from the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA).
While many sellers postpone putting their property on the market until the spring, now could be the perfect chance for you to take advantage of those buyers still seeking a new home.
By following a few simple steps, you can ensure that you market your property in the best possible light to capture a buyer this winter.
The President of the NAEA, David Mackie, says: “Traditionally, sellers hold off from marketing their homes in the bleak winter months, because they think it’s a bad time to sell. But it is time to go against these outdated claims and get your homes market ready by making small but effective changes to make your home an inviting prospect for potential buyers looking to make a winter purchase.”
These top tips will help if you’re selling a property in winter:
Don’t forget the exterior
Make sure your property looks well maintained and cared for from the outside by washing your windows and walls to remove any dirt. You should also clear the path of leaves and ensure there isn’t any ice on the paths that could cause an accident. Remember that the first few seconds upon arriving at the property are the most important in impacting the buyer’s decision.
Keep the entryway clear
Top Tips for Selling a Property in Winter
With the bad weather comes untidy and cluttered homes. Put a doormat down inside the door for you and your prospective buyers to wipe your feet on, and remove any excess shoes or wellington boots from the entryway.
Let the light in
With shorter days during the winter months, it is vital that you maintain a good level of lighting in your property to make it inviting to visitors. If you’re hosting evening viewings, create a warm and cosy ambience with lamps, and don’t forget to put any outdoor lighting on too. Always make sure that the bulbs are working before a viewing.
Welcome your guests
Decorating your property for the festive season may help your guests feel welcome and comfortable in the home. But don’t go too overboard, as you don’t want the property to seem over-cluttered. Buyers should be able to envisage themselves living in the home, so it’s worth making it as inviting as possible. Smell is also important, so think about lighting some candles or bringing in some winter plants.
Remember the garden
Messy and unkempt gardens can detract buyers, as they suggest that they’re difficult to maintain. The winter weather can also tire garden furniture, so clear it away or cover it securely. It’s worth braving the cold and spending a few hours trimming back bushes, mowing the lawn, removing fallen leaves and creating a tidy outdoor space. It’s also wise to trim back overhanging branches, as this will encourage as much light into the property as possible. Increased rainfall over the winter months also takes its toll on the guttering, so check for leaves and other debris.
Tackle any DIY jobs
If you’ve been putting off DIY jobs, the perfect time to address them is if you’re selling a property in winter. Whether you have leaky taps or cracks in the walls, make sure you put them right before viewings. Although you might not notice these small defects, potential buyers will spot them immediately, and you don’t want them to get worse during the colder months.
Going away for Christmas?
If you have a holiday booked this Christmas, don’t forget that the heating in your property should be left on at a low temperature (a minimum of 15°C), to prevent the pipes from freezing. If you’re going to leave the property vacant for a long period of time, but don’t want to leave the heating on constantly, make sure it is set on a timer. The NAEA advises leaving it on for longer spells at a lower temperature than shorter blasts at a high temperature. This will ensure that there are no problems for you to face upon your return. If you’re a landlord, remember that you must still protect your property when it is unoccupied.
Are you thinking of selling a property in winter? We hope you secure a successful sale with these tips!