Night gathers, and now my watch begins…
If you’re looking to sell your property, you might be wondering if you should wait until summer rolls around again or if you should put it on the market now.
While traditionally there aren’t as many house-hunters looking to buy during winter, it doesn’t mean the property market goes into hibernation. If anything, a lack of homes for sale during this period could mean a more lucrative offer for you due to the reduced amount of competition.
To get these offers, though, you have to prepare your property so it’s up to scratch during the cold snap. Therefore, winter property maintenance should be high on your to-do list.
There are many ways you can brace your home for winter, and as honourable lords and ladies at Philip Ellis, we put together our top tips.
Winter Is Coming…
As painful as it is to admit, we’re not going to get much sunshine over the next few months. With that said, there’s not much point in leaving the deck chairs out and letting your summer plants wilt.
When someone comes to view your property, they’ll want to check out the garden as it’s a huge selling point, especially to young families. However, they won’t be very impressed if your summer furniture is still on display, if there are dead plants and flowers that haven’t been removed or if they can barely see where they’re standing because of all the fallen leaves.
You’ll make a much better impression by clearing away the plant life and covering up/moving your garden furniture. If you want to add some life to your garden, try to get hold of some all-season plants and shrubbery.
Don’t neglect your gutters and drain covers, either. A lot of leaves and twigs can get snagged in there, which could cause blockage issues. The last thing you want is an over-running gutter on the day of a viewing.
If potential buyers can see how much you take care of the garden, they’ll have a lot more faith in the quality of the interior, too.
The Lord Of Light
The night is dark and full of terrors, but you can make things a lot easier by thinking about your property’s lighting.
People have very busy lives these days, so a viewing of your home might not take place while it’s still bright outside. This doesn’t have to be a bad thing, though, as you can still make your property shine in darkness.
With the right outdoor lighting, you can create a warm glow that will make your garden look like a winter wonderland. You should also think about installing a security light if you haven’t already got one, as it will make it much easier and safer for viewers to walk from their car to your front door.
You’ll need to make sure the interior of your property is properly lit up, as well. The cold, dreary weather can make things feel gloomy, but bright and cheerful lighting can really lift a person’s mood.
If you’re not sure how to best use lighting to your advantage during a winter viewing, an experienced estate agent will be able to give you some great advice.
A Song Of Ice & Fire
With winter comes the freezing cold, but that’s no excuse to greet your guests with a frosty reception. If you know you have a viewing coming up, you’ll want to make sure your house is as cosy as can be.
The easiest way of doing this is by switching the heating on, but if you’re lucky enough to have a fireplace, lighting it will add a warm and welcoming ambience.
And remember, getting the mood right will go a long way in getting potential buyers to imagine how great their own lives will be in your house once they have bought it.
Finding the right ambience is a skill that shouldn’t be overlooked. An estate agent’s expertise is invaluable in finding the perfect balance, so make sure to get their take on things.
For The Good Of The Realm
The worst thing that could happen during a cold snap is your boiler and pipes freezing over. As we touched on above, a warm and cosy home is essential for setting the mood, which is why it’s important to keep an eye on your heating.
Not only that, if potential buyers can see the effort you’ve gone through to keep the heating running, they’ll know you’ve really cared for and maintained the property.
Insulate your outdoor pipes with lagging to prevent freezing and make sure you know where the stopcock is just in case the chilly weather causes a burst.
On Your Way Back From Kings Landing
Being British, we’re used to the weather chucking it down. The mud that comes with the constant flow of rain we get in winter, however, is a different story entirely.
We know that pets and children like to splash and roll about in the mud if they get the opportunity, but if they tread any of it into your carpets, it could make it look like you’ve neglected to keep them clean.
Make sure everyone in your house knows to take their shoes and wellies off at the door to limit the chances of any mud getting on your carpets. And if you have a dog, keep some wipes in your hallway so you can give their paws a quick clean.
If mud does get on your carpets, it’s not the end of the world (anyone with kids or pets of their own will understand), but try to remove as much of it as possible before the viewing takes place.
Dressing The Keep
Winter is coming… you don’t need me to tell you that (again). It also means that Christmas is on the horizon.
Adding a festive touch will make your house feel more inviting, and the ones moving in will get a better idea of how their next Christmas will look, too.
However, it’s important not to go overboard. A tree with branches snapping under the weight of decorations, and a room full of tinsel, holly wreaths and mistletoe can look a little tasteless and overly-crowded.
Having an estate agent pop round can help you decide what buyers will find in good spirit and what they’ll find off-putting.
If You Think This Has A Happy Ending… YouHave Been Paying Attention
Preparing your home for a winter sale is no mean feat. Alongside all the other jobs that come withgetting your property ready for viewings, you have to think about how the weather and dark nights will have an affect.
Luckily, the team here at Philip Ellis are as hardy as the folks in Winterfell, meaning we’re always on hand to advise you on putting your house on the market, regardless of the season.
It all starts with a free property valuation, so get in touch to see how we can help you.