SPRING and Summer might traditionally be the busiest seasons in the home market.
But experts say the cold months can now be a good time to get ahead of the game.
Mark Hayward, chief executive of NAEA (National Association of Estate Agents) Propertymark, said: “It’s widely believed sellers should hold off from marketing their homes in the cooler months because it’s a challenging time to sell.
“However, with fewer properties on the market and growing demand from buyers, winter can be the perfect time to market your home and get a head start before the traditional New Year rush.”
If you are thinking about putting your house on the market during the cold snap, there are a few practical steps you can take to make it as attractive as possible to buyers.
Here are NAEA Propertymark’s top tips:
First impressions count
The first seconds upon arriving at a property really impact the buyer’s decisions. Clear the path of leaves and make sure there isn’t any ice around which could cause potential buyers to slip.
Give potential buyers a warm welcome
Making sure a home is warm and well lit can encourage viewers to stay longer and help them imagine themselves living in the property – especially during the winter.
Finishing touches such as welcoming garden lights to enhance the entrance to your home can appeal to people’s imaginations.
If you have a gas fireplace or a clean wood stove, light a fire to welcome visitors and create a warm and cosy ambience.
Christmassy touches can help to create an inviting atmosphere – but bear in mind that a house which is over-cluttered can put viewers off.
With shorter periods of daylight available for potential buyers to view your house, it’s wise to be as flexible as possible with viewings, so prospective buyers can see your home when it’s convenient for them and when it’s not too dark. Your estate agent should be able to help you work around these tricky daylight hours.
An unkempt winter garden can creat the impression that a lot of work needs to be done outdoors – so trim back bushes and take time to remove any dead plants.
Have photographs ready for buyers to see of what your gorgeous garden looks like in full bloom during the summer months, so you can show off its full potential.