Most people know that springtime is widely considered the busiest season for the real estate market. But did you know that the fall is a close second? Back from summer vacation, with the weather becoming more temperate and the kids back in school, fall is an ideal time to list your home for sale.
Here are a few tips to make your home stand out in the fall real estate market:
Clean up the yard.
With leaves falling and the blooming season past its prime for many flowers, fall is a time to keep on top of yard work. Making sure that leaves are cleared from the lawn regularly will show a dedication to making your home look nice. While paring back overgrown shrubbery and clearing dead blooms can give your yard a tailored look. Both will enhance the overall look when a prospective buyer pulls up to the curb.
Prepare for changing weather.
Install storm doors and windows. Clean out gutters in anticipation of snowfall. Shore up any exterior fixtures that might let in the elements. Check your furnace and change the filter if necessary. Fall weather can be capricious and you never know when evening temperatures may plummet, necessitating a little extra boost from your home’s heating system. And if you have a fireplace, make sure the chimney is clean and in good shape.
Capitalize on the season.
From sights to scents, fall is a warm, cozy time of year. Cheerful mums can make your home’s exterior feel inviting, while indoors, seasonal arrangements of fruits and flowers can warm up the atmosphere inside. The scents of autumn – pumpkins and apples, cinnamon and other spices – can be achieved through subtle scented candles and potpourri, baking something enticing and even, simmering spices on the stove.
Head for the holidays.
Muted holiday displays – pumpkins and Indian corn around Halloween, cornucopias as Thanksgiving nears – remind potential buyers that they could soon be celebrating the season in your home. Just be careful not to be too over-the-top with displays. Not everyone celebrates the same holidays, so keep any efforts tasteful rather than showy.
Keep it bright.
Since daylight hours dwindle throughout the fall, you’ll want to make sure that you keep interior spaces in your home full of warm light. During the daytime, throw open the curtains (keep those windows clean!) and allow natural light to flood in. When it does start to get dark, make certain your lighting highlights your home’s best attributes and allows prospective buyers to see its charm.
No matter what the season, there are certain strategies you can use to play up your home’s best features. Ask your real estate agent for tried-and-true techniques to pique the interest of buyers – and ultimately make that sale.
Julie Dolan is a sales associate with William Raveis in Concord, Mass. With a knack for home staging and design, Julie brings a unique viewpoint to the real estate business. Learn more about her on her website, check out her current listings, and follow her blog, LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.