Fall can be a great time to sell a house. Whether you missed an opportunity this past summer or are just listing your house now, don't believe spring is the only selling season!
Most people already know there are several important steps to selling your house at any time of the year.
- You should understand the market in your area. Are you in a buyer’s market or a seller’s? How much are owners asking and getting for their houses?
- Take care of all fall maintenance to make the house more attractive to buyers. Make sure all cooling and heating systems are properly cleaned and tuned. Make sure to keep service invoices handy! It is likely that buyers will expect this work to be done as part of an inspection, so why not be pro-active and show them you are on top of maintenance?
- For The Best Fall Maintenance Checklist, take a look at Check. Before YOU fall!
- Your landscaping should get regular maintenance even in the fall. Rake, rake, rake all fallen leaves. Once all the leaves have fallen, make sure gutters are cleaned. Cut back any plants that are overgrown or are not weathering well. Keep mowing the lawn and weed – as needed – until the snow falls.
- For more ideas on how
to make the most of your curb appeal, read Don't CurbYour House's Appeal!
- Your house must be
impeccably clean and arranged to show the architecture well, if not
professionally staged. To get a better idea on how to do this, take a look at The SMART…Edge
And now, let’s take a look at
what makes fall sales special!
In most parts of the country the air has started to cool down. Summer fun, for the most part is over and families are starting to settle indoors. This is a good time to switch from summer to fall décor. Put away the lighter summer bedding, window treatments and decorative accents.
Let your buyers envision themselves enjoying crisp fall evenings in your home!
Get out all your cozy decorative fall items. Wherever possible, decorate using fall colors such as oranges, reds and browns for accent pieces. Adding touches of these rich colors will help buyers envision spending the holidays at your home. Don't go overboard. Stick to small accents like throw pillows and a few well placed blankets or throws on sofas or beds.
A lot of people think they shouldn’t put out holiday décor when selling a house. This couldn’t be further from the truth!
Decide on a few specific areas to decorate, such as an entry table or fireplace mantle and keep the holiday decorating contained to these areas.
Keep it defined, crisp and clean.
More is not better!
In this way the buyers can envision spending the holidays in your house without over powering them with decorations throughout the house.
A complete house full of decorations may just look cluttered to buyers!
Some buyers may be overwelmed by too much decoration in any one area or throughout the house. Keep it easy for them to have access to all architectural features. There are buyers who will find the table decoration below to be too distracting. If they are interested in your house, distractions may mean that they will have to come back again to look. That could delay an offer - or even your sale!
The decor on the left is fun, but may look messy, or overdone to some buyers. Choose to add decor as on the right. Keep it simple, classic and stick to a tight color pallette.
Lighting and Ambiance
As the nights get longer and darker, keep the inside of your house lit as though you are entertaining. Even if it is just you at home - or even if you are out. Buyers driving by should have the sense that there is a fun event happening at your house. It will peak their curiosity.
Do keep your dining room set at all times as though you are already inviting guests for the holidays.
Put out your holiday dishes, crystal glassware and best flatware. Add a select group of a few sophisticated decorative items. Add as much sparkle as you can without being overpowering.
The image at right is elegant and festive without feeling cluttered.
Light candles before buyers visit. Create a sense of glamor, excitement and anticipation. Buyers will pick up on that!
Do put out some inviting fall décor outside. Keep it chic and well placed so that buyers are drawn to it – not wondering how they will maneuver past it!
Don't put out anything that may frighten buyers or their children. Some people may feel threatened by the scarecrow in the image on the left! That will not help you sell! Keep outdoor decorations simple and contained, as in the image on the right.
Halloween is a fun holiday for kids - and adults. It is the first big fall holiday coming up. Do acknowledge the holiday if that is something you have done so in the past.
You might be tempted to “go all out” as in the image above, since it will probably be your last Halloween in this house, but don’t do it! Keep it discrete and tasteful. Save the garden graveyard and body parts for your new place!
Be aware of the sensibilities of your buyers. People may not share your views about Halloween. Some people may find black candles, black cats or ravens to be offensive. Try to stick with more generally accepted icons, such as pumpkins. Opt for innocent and cute over grim, dark decor. You don't want to lose a sale of a house over the wrong dollar store item!
Some people think that they can just collect up these items before a showing. That may be too late as buyers often view a property from the exterior without any notification needed before deciding on whether they will ask for a visit. Don’t be caught in a situation where they accidentally see some decoration they may find offensive (realistic skulls or what have you) through a window.
For ideas on how to tastefully acknowledge the ghosts and goblins without going overboard, consult top decorating magazines that often put out special editions for Halloween.
THE biggest celebration in America is Thanksgiving. It is a holiday that everyone can embraced no matter one’s beliefs or origins.
With this holiday, it is family that matters.
It may be your last Thanksgiving in this house, but keep any decorations minimal and tasteful to appeal to all buyers. It's not about who can put out the most stuff. It's about family!
For this great occasion as well, be guided by top magazines as to current decorating trends.
Remember NOT to go overboard with decorations!
If you have come to the realization that it is time to move right now to have a better life, but your house isn’t ready for market, we can help.
If you are juggling too many responsibilities to sell your house yourself this fall, then there are people who specialize in the sale of properties "as is" - usually within a week to resolve the situation quickly.
Contact us for details.
Next time we will look at how to show off your closets.
So thanks for reading my post. I'm so glad you're here!
And I really look forward to getting into more great stuff in future posts -- so that you can
Turn Your House To $OLD!