Selling a home in winter can have its pluses and minuses. On the plus side, there is less competition. On the minus side, days are shorter, the weather doesn't always cooperate and flowers aren't in bloom.
BankRate.com has some excellent tips to help speed up a winter sale:
1. Keep walkways and driveways clear of snow and ice. You may not have to mow the lawn or trim the shrubs, but in the winter, consider this duty your "yard work."
2. Present a warm and cozy home. Make sure the temperature is comfortable and not too cool for visitors coming in from the outside. Turn on gas fireplaces if you have them.
3. Show during "high-daylight" hours and make your home as light as possible. Clean blinds and curtains and keep them open during daytime showings. Put the highest wattage bulbs in amps and fixtures, and turn the lights on when you show. And wash your windows -- even a little bit of grime gives the impression that the home isn't well cared for.
4. Set the mood with a little soft background music and some pleasant smells. Light a few candles that give off a nice scent, such as vanilla. Just don't overdo it -- you don't want people to think you're trying to mask a bad smell.
5. Ask prospective buyers to remove their shoes or slip on paper booties over them. Doing so shows buyers that you are proud of your home and take meticulous care of it.
6. Emphasize the features of your home that make it a good place to live in the winter. If your roads are regularly plowed and de-iced, be sure to make it known.
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