As we’re getting closer to the busy spring season, many of us are preparing for the warm weather that’s ahead. Some parts of the country, however, are still in the grips of Old Man Winter.
If you’re one of the many who are still out selling homes in the freezing temperatures and braving the snowy roads you may want to use the winter weather to your advantage.
Here are five ways to market a home listing in the middle of winter:
Bring the heat
Grab the attention of potential buyers during the cold season by making a home’s heating features a major selling point. If the house has a fireplace be sure to focus on it when you post listing photos. Also include any and all details about the heating system of the house — whether it’s gas or electric– and speak to how well it heats the home during the winter, as well as the cost to maintain the system. Consider adding the average monthly heating bill to the listing (if it’s not too high!) to show off how efficient the home is. The key is to make the heating system a central aspect to your listing or home showing.
Garage & mudroom
When prepping your listing for photos or showings don’t overlook the garage and mudroom! Having a place to park your car makes leaving the house so much easier in freezing temperatures and also keeps the car safe from any winter-related damage like ice-laden tree limbs dropping in the middle of the night. Make sure the garage is clean and presentable when marketing the listing and when showing it to potential buyers. Mudrooms are must-haves, especially where young families are concerned, as they can help minimize the messiness created when people traipse in and out with snow or mud on their shoes.
Because the spring and summer seasons are seen as the best months to sell a house, there are usually fewer homes on the market during the winter. With less competition, your listing probably won’t need as many bells and whistles to make it stand out, but that shouldn’t stop you from keeping it in the best shape. Make sure the driveways are shoveled clear of any snow and the landscape and home exterior are well maintained. Although potential buyers probably won’t be outside much during the showing it’s still a good idea to make sure the appearance gives the best first impression.
Along with a solid heating system, buyers will likely be looking for how well insulated a home is. If the house meets or exceeds insulation standards for a cold climate (for instance, R49-60 in attics), then definitely mention that in the listing. Some houses on the market are getting creative with their insulation, like using hemp and sheep’s wool in place of traditional materials like fiberglass. Asking your seller about the home’s insulation cannot only ensure you get to check off a box on your listing but it could also add a positive selling point guaranteed to appeal to a future buyer.
In an area that experiences snowy and icy road conditions, it’s important to know what the commute would be like when getting around town. Be sure to mention if the listing is within close proximity to the places people would like to be close to, such as grocery stores, major roads, hospitals, schools, shopping and dining. If the listing is in a rural area, you might want to reassure a homebuyer prospect what road service accommodations there are in case of severe winter weather.
Do you have any tips for selling a home in the winter? Share with us on Twitter, Facebook or in a comment below!