We’re faced with four unique seasons here in the Northeast. With each season comes with its own set of challenges that pertain to selling a home. Today, let’s talk about prepping your home to go to market in the midst of autumn.
Fall is arguably one of the most beautiful seasons. Colors are abound, making it a great season in which to sell. We’re coming off of the busy summer months, and are prepping for winter. There’s a certain “calm before the storm,” and, by-and-large, people are more apt to be taking drives in the fall, and, are more likely to be attending open houses and seeking their first, or next home. So how do you garner attention amongst the fall foliage? The obvious first statement is, take advantage of nature’s backdrop.
Tips to prepare your property for fall sale:
Create Curb Appeal
Think mums, pumpkins, gourds, and marigolds. Full flowers and vegetation accent the flavor of the season. Clean the yard and remove debris such as leaves, sticks, rogue pieces of trash, and bring your yard to life. Accenting the manicured yard with the aforementioned potted flowers, and bright, colorful gourds add intrigue, and intrigue equals a larger audience. From there, a larger audience means more potential offers on your home. Curb appeal is important. If you’re showcasing that you take good care of your yard, you’re adding to the comfort of the season by setting the feeling of comfort with the potential buyer that the property has been in good hands.
Pay Mind to the Windows
Windows, for many, are the most important part of the house. They directly affect the environment within a home, and add to the natural ambiance and lighting of the place. If both are in good order, greater appeal is garnered. Clean your screens… We’ve all seen the “ring” patterns left by fans running through the summer. Rain, wind, dust, and dirt contribute to these unsightly markings, and it’s important to clean the screens when fall comes into play. From there, clean the windows! Smudges are natural, and removing them isn’t all that hard – it just takes a moment’s effort, and, like the aforementioned “curb appeal” plug, showcasing that you care about the look, feel, and health of your windows will go a long way in assuring a prospective buyer that you keep up on your chores and care about the home you’re selling. Also, take a look inside the window at the housing… The same wind, rain, dirt, dust scenario can buildup down below and needs to be wiped out from time-to-time.
Along with simple aesthetics, close up air leaks around windows and doors. 5% – 30% of a home’s energy escapes through gaps in window frames. Check the spaces around windows and doors for drafts, and seal them using caulk or weather stripping. Paying attention to the details goes a long way with not only the home’s integrity, but the buyer’s feelings on your attentiveness to the needs of the property. In short: make the windows shine so your home can do the same!
Check the HVAC / Chimney / Furnace
It’s best practice to have your home’s heating system maintained annually for myriad reasons: air quality, component health, and among other things, to make sure you’re good to go for the cold months ahead. You don’t want to be stuck seeking immediate help in the middle of a deep, cold spell, jeopardizing the health of you and your family… It’s best to get out in front of this. If you’re not annually maintaining, or at the very least, maintaining before you put your home on the market, the home inspector will find you out really quick, and, start taking a closer look at everything else once they’re faced with the fact that you dropped the ball on the most important piece of your home’s backbone / integrity. A well-maintained HVAC / Chimney / Furnace is imperative in the climate we live in here in New England. If you’re utilizing a woodstove, when was the last time you had it, and the chimney cleaned? That’s a serious fire hazard if it hasn’t happened in a while. You should definitely have it done before you start showing the property. If you’re being lazy at its expense, trouble will arise. Along these lines, don’t forget to insulate the pipes in your home. This not only shows that your serious about efficiency, it also goes a long way in showcasing that you mean business when it comes to the care and longevity of the home’s inner component workings.
Clear the Gutters
Not much to say here outside of the fact that we know you haven’t done it in a while. Break out the ladder, put on some gloves, and get to it. If you don’t the inspector will, and by will, we mean, they’ll see the clutter and suggest an offer comes in lower, or perhaps not at all… If you’re really feeling like adding some value to the home, consider installing those guards that cover the gutter and prevent leaves, pine needles, pinecones, and nests from developing in the first place.
Showcase the Lights
Light becomes scarcer when fall fully kicks in. So turn on the lights! Not only does this brighten and liven up the home, it also directly showcases the lighting that you have throughout and cuts down on precarious shadows that might be cast from the shorter setting sun. They’re going to try out the switches anyway, so why not have them operating upon arrival? People like light, so let them have it!
Utilize Autumn Accent Colors
Add life to the existing sofa or chairs by accessorizing them with bright red, orange and/or golden yellow pillows. Toss a quilt or autumn-colored throw over a chair. It’s autumn, so think autumn and dress the home up with the colors of fall. You’ve got the lights on, so add light to the appeal the home’s furnishings which, as we’ve stated before, can add to the “comfort” aesthetic of the property. You can even go so far as to extend the curb appeal sentiment into the home and set up an autumn centerpiece on the dining room table by arranging pine cones and nuts around orange candles, stick in a few leaves from the yard – and don’t forget those pumpkins and gourds. Did someone say cornucopia? Yes, we just did…
Prepare Autumn Edibles
In parting, we’ll finish this off by hitting all the senses. While your decorating your home to look and feel the part of a gorgeous autumn day, hit your prospective buyer(s) in the smell and taste sense as well. Set out freshly baked pumpkin cupcakes/bread, and/or an apple pie. Speaking of apples, simmer hot apple cider on the stove and maybe offer it up during the showing. And don’t go light on the cinnamon. Burn full cinnamon sticks and cloves as incense and fill the home with the smell of fall. Fill a bowl with crisp red apples as if you’ve just returned home from the orchard. It might seem silly, but these small touches can definitely go a long way. Showcasing comfort exudes comfort. And when comfort is met, offers start to roll in.
Are you ready to sell? Contact Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Verani Realty today. Selling your home and staging it for a particular season is all related to marketing, and we’re pros at just that (and of selling your property, of course!) We’re here when you’re ready!