Traipsing around to open houses in cold, wet weather is certainly not as pleasant as in the warmer months. But if you’re selling your home (or indeed, looking to buy) winter presents unique opportunities that you may not expect. Here’s how you can market your home to its best and also look out for important aspects which may be overlooked in summer as a buyer.
Natural light – Make this one of your main focal points. Enhance spaces by using as much natural light as possible and use lamps and mood lighting in otherwise darker areas of the home to compensate for the weaker sunlight.
Ventilation – Fresh air is always important and even more so in winter to keep away mould and musty smells. Although we tend to open windows and doors less in winter than in spring, it’s important to keep moisture at bay not only for prospective buyers but also for your own general health.
Orientation – The direction that your home faces has a large impact on natural light. Although you can’t change the position of your house, you can change how different rooms in your house are presented to show buyers the best use for each space. For example, if you have two bedrooms of equal size but one is much brighter than the other, it makes sense to set this one up as the master bedroom to showcase its beauty to buyers.
Heating – Making your home as comfortable as possible for prospective buyers goes without saying. Ensure your heating systems are serviced and in good working order and keep the home warm leading up to the time of your open house.
Natural light – In winter it is easier to tell if a home offers a lot of natural light in key areas of the home. Look for rooms that offer winter sunlight and imagine how you would use the space. Just because a sunny room is set up as a bedroom doesn’t mean you can’t convert it into a lovely lounge area or home office.
Ventilation – It is easy to have a well-ventilated home during the warmer months so viewing a home in winter will show you just how well-ventilated it is during the wetter months of the year. Keep an eye out for rising damp, mould and a general smell of musty-ness which will also give you a clue as to how well the home has been cared for and maintained.
Orientation – Winter will show you how a home’s position affects natural light and the use of each room. Perhaps there is still a surprising amount of natural sunlight in the kitchen even on the gloomiest day? This gives you great information about how the home will suit you, not just on a bright sunny day in spring, but year round.
Heating – Winter is also the perfect time to judge the effectiveness of a home’s heating system, omitting the chance of a nasty surprise for costly repairs months down the track. Take note of how the home is heated and also check for insulation.