Styled, Staged & Sold

Bringing you the latest home design and staging trends. From REALTOR® Magazine.

8 Tips to Sell in the Dead of Winter

Offer your clients a list of important ways to prepare their home for a winter showing.

Submitted by HomeLight

Lake House
Photo by Ian Keefe on Unsplash

Winter can still be a good time to sell a house, but you may have to work a little harder to make the space appear cozy, warm, and inviting against the dreariness of the season. HomeLight, a real estate referral company, recently gathered some insights from top agents about how to sell a house quickly in cold weather.

1. Snow removal is important.

Snow is one of the biggest nuisances when you’re trying to sell a house. It’s important to take the time to clear any walkways so that buyers and agents can use them safely. If there are icy spots, sprinkle rock salt or sand so that no one slips and gets hurt.

2. Illuminate rooms with lots of light.

Winter isn’t known for consistent sunshine, but let in what natural light you can. If you don’t have the best view from the windows, close the blinds or curtains and turn on the lights in every room, closet, and even the basement and/or attic. If you have a dark corner, use a spotlight or accent lighting to brighten the area.

3. Make sure everything is sparkling clean.

This should go without saying, but if you want to sell your house, it has to be move-in ready. You’ll want to scrub every surface, remove any cobwebs or dust bunnies, and declutter closets and cabinets. If you need to, consider hiring a professional cleaner to do a deep clean every few weeks. It’ll be worth it when the offers start rolling in.

4. Keep your home at a comfortable temperature.

Do you like to keep the thermostat above 72 degrees during the winter? Maybe you’re okay with the cooler weather and prefer to keep it closer to 65 degrees. However, when you’re expecting people to come by to see the home, you don’t want it to be too hot or too cold. A comfortable temperature would be about 68 to 70 degrees.

5. Create an environment that’s cozy and inviting.

The winter is all about soft, fuzzy blankets, a cozy fire, and an atmosphere where you just want to curl up with a good book. You can create a welcoming vibe that’ll entice buyers by doing a few simple things:

  • Lay a soft throw blanket across the arm of a chair or on the back of the sofa.
  • Set your dining table as though you’re preparing for a nice dinner.
  • Create a reading nook complete with a chair, side table, and a few good books.
  • Have a few decorations for the holiday, but don’t go overboard!
  • Consider hiring a home stager who can ensure rooms flow nicely into one another, position furniture, and make sure features are spotlighted.

6. Play some calming music.

Almost every store has some type of music playing overhead. This tactic encourages people to spend more money, unbeknownst to them. You can do the same with buyers. You can use soft music (we like to use classical) to get the buyer to relax and enjoy the atmosphere. Just keep in mind to avoid the radio because commercials will break the mood.

7. Avoid strong aromas.

While you want your home to smell good, you don’t want to overwhelm visitors with competing scents. You never know what kinds of smells people are sensitive to. Instead of perfumed sprays or strong scented candles, go for a natural approach. Try spiced cider simmering on the stove before a showing to create seasonally appropriate aromas.

8. Present interesting tidbits about the home.

If you have a craftsman home with a lot of original features, create a card or fact sheet that highlights special details. You can mention that the wood floors are original to the house or that the staircase railing is hand-carved. You could mention whether the home has had major updates, such as a new roof or appliances.

These winter showing tips may seem like small details that are inconsequential to your sale, but you’d be surprised by how far these little touches will go. Cozy staging can help buyers envision what life could be like if they lived there.


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