It’s a well-established fact that house sales are lower in summer and winter than in spring and autumn. In July and August families are too busy going on holidays and enjoying a beer in the back garden to go out house hunting, particularly considering the restricted time that children have off school anyway.
In winter the reasons are the same – no-one can be bothered – but with different origins. Leaving your cosy present home in harsh, cold weather is never pleasant, especially in the dark. The evening darkness doesn’t paint a prospective home in the most welcoming light, but unfortunately that’s the only time when many people can pay visits after work/school.
This writer has heard of a viewing on a December night where the visitors walked from a bleak, freezing evening into a wonderful idyllic little home, of warmth and cups of tea and Christmas lights and loveliness. The next day, in a fit of wonder, they made an offer. Only when they visited a few days later, in milder weather in the daytime light, did they realise they had made a mistake and withdrew the offer – wasting everyone’s time.
So how can you make your house more sellable? We’ve already seen that keeping it warm is a good start, and that means turning on the heaters a good half an hour before the viewing. In addition, make the house look nice. Plenty of light, perhaps candles and Christmas trees, will at least give the rooms a little friendliness.
Prepare hot drinks and mince pies, and try to be flexible with time allocated to house visits – if someone wishes to visit in the day then attempt to acquiesce. The aim is to make your home look as nice as possible in the worst conditions, like a lovely little grotto.
The unpleasant weather will show potentially interested parties what your home really looks like, warts and all, so consider investing in outside lights and security lights if you do not have them already. Look after any plants and trees that need protection – they won’t be at their best, but showing an obvious lack of care will weigh heavily on the mind of any gardening lovers.
If the weather isn’t too brutal then try tidying the garden and pathway leading to the home, because the weather conditions may be impossible to change but the house conditions certainly aren’t. There’s no excuse for rubbish and excessive litter scattered in the garden.
The murky, muggy weather of January presents different difficulties, but one should still make the effort to undertake any little tasks that are needed. Repairing broken windows and repainting window frames are definite jobs to be completed, and there’s no excuse whatsoever for failing to complete odd jobs inside the home.