Ad­van­tages of home sell­ing in win­ter

Lesotho Times - - Property -

WHEN it comes to sell­ing a home, many peo­ple as­sume win­ter is the worst pos­si­ble time to en­ter the mar­ket. Af­ter all, the days are short and cold, gar­dens are suf­fer­ing, and damp can be a real is­sue; it stands to rea­son that most homes won’t be look­ing as good as they do in warmer sea­sons.

This is ac­cord­ing to Tony Clarke, Man­ag­ing Direc­tor of the Raw­son Prop­erty Group, who says win­ter can, how­ever, be an ex­cel­lent time to sell a home.

When you’re sell­ing a house, you’re com­pet­ing with other houses that are show­ing at the same time, not with other houses show­ing in a warmer, dryer, brighter sea­son.

Clarke says buy­ers choose a prop­erty by com­par­i­son, no mat­ter the sea­son, so while your home might not look as invit­ing as it does in sum­mer, it only needs to be more invit­ing than other prop­er­ties on of­fer in or­der to sell well.

“The good thing about this is that in win­ter there tends to be far less com­pe­ti­tion, so it’s much eas­ier to po­si­tion your home as the most at­trac­tive op­tion, es­pe­cially if you’re will­ing to put in a lit­tle bit of ef­fort on show days.”

Clarke says you may won­der if buy­ers stop look­ing for prop­erty in win­ter. Doesn’t de­mand dra­mat­i­cally de­crease in colder months, and prices drop ac­cord­ingly?

Sell­ers def­i­nitely get fewer win­dow­shop­pers be­cause peo­ple are less likely to visit show houses for fun when it’s cold and rainy, but that can work in your favour, since those who do come are al­most guar­an­teed to be se­ri­ous buy­ers, he says.

“It can be smart to house hunt in win­ter; if you like a house when it’s cold and dark, you’ll prob­a­bly love it when it’s bright and sunny, plus you’ll know how com­fort­able it is in win­ter.”

Clarke says sales prices have much more to do with de­mand, avail­abil­ity and the amount of re­pair or ren­o­va­tion your house might need than they do with the sea­son you hap­pen to be sell­ing in.

There have been in­ter­na­tional stud­ies that have shown prop­er­ties on sale in win­ter to sell more quickly, and for higher prices, than sim­i­lar list­ings in sum­mer.

To show your house to its best ad­van­tage in win­ter, and com­pete ef­fec­tively against other prop­er­ties, Clarke rec­om­mends a few sim­ple tricks to cre­ate a warm and invit­ing en­vi­ron­ment:

Let the light and warmth in Open all your cur­tains and blinds and turn on a light or two in every room.

He says a bright house is a cheer­ful house, and that counts twice as much in win­ter.

Run­ning a heater or light­ing a fire to take the chill out of the air also helps, as do clean and un­clut­tered spa­ces with a few vases of fresh flow­ers placed here and there to add life and colour.

“Make sure you put fresh tow­els in the bath­rooms to avoid damp or musty smells, and clean away any mouldy marks on your tile grout, walls or ceil­ings.”

Pre­pare your gar­den In your gar­den, plant win­ter-bloom­ing flow­ers a few weeks or months be­fore you plan to sell. If you don’t have time to pre­pare in ad­vance, Clarke says you can place flow­er­ing pots in strate­gic po­si­tions.

“It’s also im­por­tant to keep grass and hedges trimmed and rake up any stray leaves. A win­ter gar­den doesn’t have to be di­shev­elled, and it can do won­ders to brighten up the first im­pres­sions of a prop­erty.”

He says ap­proached cor­rectly, sell­ing your house in win­ter can be a smart choice which al­lows you to stand out from the crowd far more than you might in sum­mer.

— Prop­erty24

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