Express Your Holiday Spirit While Selling Your Home
We’ve discussed home staging during the holiday season before, and we believe that if you want to decorate during the holiday season, you should! However, the following suggestions will help you enjoy the holidays while your home is on the market:
- Have your MLS photos taken before you decorate your home. Your online listing will look stale after the holiday season if the photos show a decorated home.
- Keep holiday decorations to a minimum. Remember, buyers are trying to view the home and too many decorations will be a distraction.
- Keep the decorations nondenominational. Crosses, menorahs, and nativity scenes are a distraction to buyers. The point of home staging is for buyers to imagine themselves living in your home. They do not want to be thinking about who lives there now.
- Avoid flashing, multi colored lights. A tasteful set of white lights is best when your home is on the market. Outside your home, consider lighting only the front door area, and maybe a tree near the entrance to the driveway.
- Avoid using large inflatable lawn decorations. While these decorations can be fun and whimsical, they are too distracting for home staging purposes.
- If you like to have a tree, use only three or four different, yet coordinating, ornaments to keep the tree simple and elegant. Also, like the exterior, only use white lights. In keeping with home staging best practices, ornaments with names or photos, should not be displayed.
- Use decorations that compliment your current color palette. Metallics are always a safe bet for holiday decorating and home staging. Metallics will add shine and reflect light around your home. If your home is already decorated in neutral colors you can add some holiday colors such as blue or red. But, don’t mix colors or you could create a distraction rather than cohesion.
- Home staging done properly accentuates the positive features of your home. So, if you have a particularly interesting architectural feature, like a fireplace, gabled window or arched doorway, draw attention to it with tasteful holiday décor.
- If you have a gas or electric fireplace, show your agent how to work it. Or if you have a wood burning fireplace, light it and ask you agent to tend it during open house for a warm cozy feel. Although many stagers suggest baking cookies prior to open house, we think it’s a little over done (and frankly, buyers seem to be aware of this old home staging trick as well). We suggest quartering a lemon or orange and putting it through your garbage disposal for a fresh scent.
- If you have a mud room, be sure to keep it neat and organized for home staging purposes. Leave out only one coat and pair of boots per family member. Keep gloves, scarves and hats in decorative storage baskets.
- Be sure to keep your driveway and walkways clear of snow. A nice dry walkway and drive way is a must if you want to make a good impression on buyers. On the bright side – snow hides a multitude of sins, maybe your flower beds are in need of mulch, maybe you didn’t get the final lawn maintenance done – snow hides these minor flaws.
We know it’s not easy to live in a staged home and it may be even more difficult during the holidays. But, if you follow these steps, you will be on the road to success. Remember, there may be fewer buyers during the winter holidays, but they are more serious!
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