Looking to Sell Your Home? Winter Might be the Right Time

by Miranda Marquit · 0 comments

home in winter
We often think of spring and summer when we think of home buying and selling. Additionally, we assume that selling a home is hard in the winter because of the thin market and fewer buyers.

Research goes against the idea that winter is a bad time to sell, however. A report from Redfin from a couple of years ago found that homes listed during winter months are about 9% more likely to sell, and then sell for about 1.2% more. Not only that, but they sell about one week faster.

Here are some of the reasons Greg Jaeger, vice president at USAA Bank, believes that selling your home during the winter can make sense:

1. Less Competition

First of all, you are going up against less competition when you sell during the winter. With fewer homes on the market, buyers have to be content with what’s available to some degree. “You can price more aggressively since you’re typically dealing with more serious buyers,” says Jaeger.

While it’s true that many buyers are out there in the winter months looking for good deals, it’s also true that there are some advantages that go to sellers. If you don’t have to sell immediately, you have time to wait for the right buyer — which might be someone who is tired of looking at the slim pickings and is willing to snap up your attractive home.

2. More Attention for Your Listing

One of the best reasons to sell your home during the winter, says Jaeger, is that you will get more attention for your listing from a real estate agent. If you decide to use a real estate agent, it’s hard to get him or her to give your listing special attention during the summer months. “Real estate agents, lenders, and home inspectors are maxed out due to the flood of home sales,” Jaeger points out. “But during the winter months, you’re more likely to receive better customer service.”

This isn’t just about the way a real estate agent can spend more time pushing your listing, either. You’re more likely to close faster during the winter because it’s easier to schedule a timely home inspection, and it’s easier to get the buyer’s loan application processed. The whole situation is easier to deal with during the winter when the load is smaller.

3. Lower Associated Costs

Finally, everyone has the potential to win with lower costs associated with moving and home ownership. According to Jaeger, you are more likely to get better prices on roofing repairs, window replacement, and air conditioner maintenance during the colder months. On top of that, moving companies charge as much as 30% less during winter as compared to the peak moving season.

Even if you don’t get quite as much as you would like for your home, you might be able to make up for some of it with lower costs in other related areas. With the right approach, winter doesn’t have to be a bad time to sell your home. You might even come out ahead.

single family home

How To Prepare Your Home For The Highest Selling Price

Convinced? Now it’s time to make sure your home is in the best possible selling condition before you officially put it on the market. There are what seems like thousands of new listings every week. As a homeowner ready to test the market, it’s important to ask yourself this question: what sets your home apart from the rest?

The first few weeks your home is on the market is crucial. The longer your property stays unsold, the lower the offers you’ll receive. You want to make sure your house makes a good first impression to any prospective buyer who sees it. If you’re selling your home, take a look at these tips to prepare your home for the highest selling price:

Do a Thorough Cleaning

The easiest but most important thing you need to do before you sell your home is to make sure it’s squeaky clean. Dust off the cobwebs, mop the floors, and wipe off any dust. Do a thorough cleaning of your home. A dirty home is unappealing and will immediately turn off any potential buyers.

Repaint Your Walls

Painting your walls can immediately give your home a fresh new look. You should especially do this if your walls are not a neutral color. A paint color like a neutral off white will make your home feel more open and bright, which will also help any buyer imagine the possibilities.

Add Extra Light

A bright home gives the illusion of space. It also makes you feel happier in general. When you show your home, open all the curtains and blinds to let as much light in as possible. Also add a lamp to any dark corners of your home. It makes a world of a difference.

De-clutter Your Closets

As you clean your home, make sure you don’t stuff everything into your closets. Buyers will open them to peek inside and finding a mess doesn’t make for a good impression. De-clutter your closets and storage area. The less stuff you have, the more space you have.

Fix the Little Things

While you might not be able to do a full renovation, you can fix the little things. Repair cracks in the wall, clean out the stains in the carpet, or polish your hardwood floors. You can even redecorate by changing out the knobs on your cabinets or adding paintings to your walls. These little things can really add value to a home, so the extra effort is well worth the investment.

Think About Curb Appeal

Last but not least, don’t forget about curb appeal. As buyers drive up to your home, you want them to feel excited to walk inside. Mow your lawn, add some plants and rake the leaves. Make your home inviting and give buyers the feeling of wanting to see what’s inside.

Have you sold a home before? What did you do to prepare it?

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