Monday, December 14, 2009

7 Tips for Holiday Homesellers—House On or Off the Market at Christmas?

It is that time of year again. The holidays are upon us but the house hasn’t sold. What should a seller do?

At first inclination most sellers opt to withdraw their home from the market believing that the preoccupation with the holiday season puts few buyers in the market. While there is truth to this belief, sellers can be ignoring another more important truth: Those buyers looking at houses during the holidays are very serious buyers. That
extended tax credit has expanded to include those who have owned homes previously so this year there are more winter buyers than ever before. There are not many tire-kickers running around with a REALTOR® when there are presents to buy and gifts to wrap. December and January showings are a seller’s opportunity as most homes that buyers visit at this time of the year are vacant. A buyer’s choices are down to model homes, empty relocation properties and foreclosures. A welcome home filled with the colorful sights, delightful sounds and wonderful aromas of the season give a unique opportunity for those wanting to sell.

Tips for Showing and Selling During the Holidays
  1. Decorate! Tastefully of course. This might not be the year that you do the Griswold display of lights as in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, but a decorated tree, candles and wreaths can add a special touch.
  2. Bake and leave out Christmas Cookies. Why should Santa have all of the extra calories?
  3. Make sure the fireplace is burning bright, warm and welcoming!
  4. Play holiday music. Leave out the barking version of Jingle Bells and go for instrumentals or uniquely Minnesota regional artists like The Blenders.
  5. Shovel and salt the driveway if necessary. No one wants to spend the holidays in the emergency room with a twisted ankle.
  6. Turn the heat up for showings…Let them know the furnace really works. It is such a treat after visiting vacant foreclosed homes!
  7. Leave the front light on! Don’t forget it is dark out during those early evening showings. Make certain buyers and their agents are able to see their way to your front door and lockbox.

Copyright 2009 Teri Eckholm