Preparing to sell your Austin, Texas home during the winter holiday season can be a difficult task with several obstacles that you will have to face. Unlike the warm spring and summer months, winter can be a hard time to entice buyers to come out and view your home. Even though the Austin area is known for its mild winters, the cooler temperatures can cause many buyers to want to stay indoors. Plus, people can be very busy during this time of year — visiting family members and preparing for upcoming parties or other events.
The good news is that there is still hope for homeowners who would like to sell their home before Christmas. There are several things that you can do in order to successfully prepare your home so that it will gain more attention from eager buyers. Here are twelve tips to get your home sell-ready in just 12 days.
Day One: Find an Agent and See How They can Sell Your Home
The key to selling your home quickly during any type of season is to find a good, reliable agent that you can count on. Ask for recommendations from people that you trust so that you will be certain that you have made the right decision. Once you have found an agent, you will then need to discuss how they will be able to sell your home. Ask plenty of questions so that you will be able to learn more about what you can do to make your home more presentable.
Day Two: See What Your Home is Worth
In order to place a reasonable price on your home, you will first need to find out how much your home is worth. Doing research on similar homes in your local area that have sold recently will help you to determine a good price for your home. Your real estate agent will be able to help you get this information by providing you with several resources, such as a comparative market analysis.
Day Three: Decide on a Listing Price
On this day you should focus on coming up with an exact listing price for your home that is both reasonable and competitive. Using the research that you have gathered on other homes in your local area, you will gain a better understanding of how much is too much to ask for a single family home like your own. Your agent can offer advice on how to correctly price your home as well as provide you with details on how to negotiate with buyers in a fair and professional manner. Negotiating with your buyer will allow you to reach the closing of a home sale much faster.
Day Four: Make Any Necessary Repairs
The condition of your home will help determine how quickly it sells. If there are many things wrong with the home, buyers will not be interested. Take this time to fix leaky pipes, loose door knobs and tend to other simple home repairs. If major repair work needs to be done, schedule an appointment with a local contractor to find out how much the repairs will cost and when they can be completed.
Day Five: Clear the Clutter in Each Room
Clutter can be described as anything from the contents of a junk drawer to mountains of paperwork piled up on a desk. Clearing the clutter will help your current home look more presentable to buyers and save you from taking a large load of unwanted items to your brand new home. Sort through your closets and other areas, throw out the trash, and either donate the good items that you no longer wish to keep, or have a moving sale to make some extra cash.
Day Six: Arrange Furniture in a way That Sells
How you arrange the furniture in your home can help make the selling process go much smoother. Gather some ideas from home and garden magazines or home interior experts and arrange the furniture in your living room, family room or den so that each one has a strong focal point. It may be the television, a fireplace, or a large painting. The key is to make the room look as presentable as possible
Day Seven: Stage the Bathroom
The bathrooms, especially the master bath, will be one of the top rooms in the home that will help you get closer to closing the deal. Many people are interested in having large luxury bathrooms that they can pamper themselves in. If you can’t spring for a brand new renovation for your ordinary bathroom, be sure to make it as clean as possible by making sure that the bath fixtures sparkle and removing all mold and mildew. Add a calming theme to your bath by placing scented candles around the tub or additional lighting fixtures at the sink.
Day Eight: Stage the Kitchen
The kitchen and dining room areas are two more rooms that will often make or break your home sale. While many homes will not always have a separate dining room, all should have a fully functional kitchen with plenty of storage space and modern appliances. The best way to prepare your kitchen for an upcoming home showing is to clean it as if the entire sale depends on the cleanliness of that single room. Limit your countertop items to no more than two objects, and choose a decorative centerpiece for your dining room table.
Day Nine: Enhance the Curb Appeal
The holiday season is actually an excellent time to add more curb appeal to your home. Of course you do not have the lush green landscaping and fresh flowers like you would have in the spring, but you do have a reason to give your home a special festive look. Add a brightly colored wreath to the front door and pots of poinsettias in the yard. This extra amount of greenery and color will make the exterior of your home pop even throughout the dull and dreary winter season.
Day Ten: Add Seasonal Touches
Selling your home before Christmas allows you to add many exceptional holiday decorations all throughout your home. Just be sure to not go overboard with large inflatables and multiple Christmas trees. Decorate your home just like you would any other time, perhaps with a few extra seasonal touches here and there. You may want to have a fresh plate of homemade Christmas cookies out during a showing for visitors to enjoy that will fill the home with a sweet and welcoming aroma.
Day Eleven: Prepare and Host an Open House
Hosting a successful open house requires you to actually do very little. Let your agent take care of the hosting while you do something in town. Let potential buyers look around freely without worrying that the owner may be watching. Having refreshments available such as cookies and coffee will help to sweeten the deal.
Day Twelve: Review Feedback
After the open house, it is time to review feedback from your agent and discuss if any changes need to be made to your selling process. If no offers were made, you may want to consider lowering your price or consider doing a few renovations around the home.
Selling Your Home in Austin, TX
There is no right or wrong time to sell a home in Austin. And even though the winter season can sometimes slow down in some markets, Austin sellers have the benefit of warm winters that will entice more eager buyers to go out and view available homes. If you are concerned about how long it will take to sell your home after placing it on the market during the holiday season, these “12 Days of Christmas” home selling tips can help you make the necessary adjustments or changes that need to be made in order to sell your home as quickly as possible.
To learn more about selling your home in Austin, read our free home seller’s eBook: