Ho-Ho-Home Selling During The Holidays

November 22, 2011



During the holiday season, your to-do list may be as long as Santa’s beard, but with a little planning, this festive period might be the perfect time to sell your house.  A perfectly staged winter backdrop can mean ideal situations such as: less competition (as many homes are taken off the market now), the buyers are usually more serious at this time, and the market savvy ones have an eye on making an end-of-the-year purchase for tax reasons.


Here’s how to make buyers think of your house when they look forward to being home for the holidays:


Let there be light: Make sure the window glass is clean and then fling open the curtains. Light a fire during showings (use fragrant wood like apple). Turn on lots of lights.  Use a timer so lights go on every night whether you are there or not. Buyers may drive by and seeing a dark house (particularly when your neighbors homes are likely to be lit up) isn’t the best way to get noticed.  Don’t forget to turn on porch lights, too.


Warm things up: Turn up the thermostat. No one wants to come “home” to a cold house. Everything should be welcoming. Paint or polish the front door, shine the doorknob and buy a new doormat, too.


The nose knows: Bake gingerbread, sugar cookies or yeast bread before a showing to. Use scented soap in the bathrooms and holiday candles and bowls of potpourri throughout the house. People will warm to a nostalgic place upon entering.  Choose one or two scents only so the scents don’t compete (pine is clean and cinnamon gives a holiday feel without being cloying.)


Less is more: When it comes to holiday decor, stick to a simple wreath and pots of poinsettias outside (although you may stick a red velvet bow on the “For Sale” sign) and simple, non-denominational decorations inside. Scented pinecones and ribbons, a carefully decorated tree (an artificial one is best so there is no need to vacuum before unexpected showings), or some boughs and berries on the mantelpiece are best. Stash your personal decorations and pile of presents in a closet so potential buyers can better imagine themselves in the home.


First impressions count: In winter, when the trees and bushes are leafless, more of your house shows itself, making curb appeal even more important. Make sure any paint or siding near the foundation is clean, the garden beds raked and mulched, the sidewalks free of snow and ice and all exterior lights are working. Also, if possible, provide your Realtor with photos of your home during spring and summer seasons, so a potential buyer can see how the landscaping looks during warmer months.


Working with a professional Realtor like those on the team at Century 21 Affiliated Chicago can ensure your home gets sold quickly over the holiday’s and you are sure to have a truly happy new year.

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About century21affiliatedchicago

Century 21 Affiliated-Chicago (“C21AC”) is a full service real estate brokerage firm located in Chicago with a focus on residential and commercial properties. Our agent base and management team includes a wide range of specialties serving customer needs across the ever changing real estate landscape, with expertise in many niches, including REO transactions, investment sales, bulk purchasers and sellers, commercial product and traditional residential transactions. C21AC is part of Century 21 Affiliated (“Affiliated”), a top 5 franchisee in the Century 21 system with over 30 locations across the Midwest and over 32 years of history. C21AC entered the Chicago market in February 2011 to re-launch the Century 21 brand in the downtown area and to bring a proven operating platform to the large and fragmented Chicago real estate market. At Century 21 Affiliated, the customer comes first. Our complete commitment to delivering top-notch customer service to our clients is what distinguishes us from our competitors and makes us such a powerful force in the real estate industry. Specialties Residential Sales, Commercial Sales, Short Sales, Bulk Sales, REO's, Leasing, Business Services

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