It’s interesting to note that traditionally selling in spring tends to be the right decision. Obviously with spring brings beautiful blooms, endless colours to our gardens and everything looks it’s best. However talk to your local real estate agents and review the sales results and you may discover that this perception that we’ve all believed could actually be a false comfort.
The right season actually depends greatly on a variety of other factors such as the property on offer, the neighbourhood and suburb to name a few. For example, are you in a tourist spot? A beach suburb? Or are there events on at certain times of the year that turn your normally quiet street or suburb into a car park?
From past experiences, I feel there can also be a huge advantage in marketing your home during traditionally quiet periods. During winter, people tend to hibernate a little but there are always buyers in need of a property or another great time is from early January into February, when other sellers are still on holidays. You see everyone picks these times as quiet times and wait for the peaks to bring their property to market. With fewer properties to choose from, more of the buyers will get to see your property and have less competition to compare with.
Regardless of the time of year you decide to sell, there are some absolute must-dos:
- Thoroughly clean your property from top to bottom – inside and out
- Trim overgrown gardens; remove weeds and dead growth and refresh garden beds with mulch
- Address any off-putting maintenance issues, such as peeling paint, worn or marked carpets, cracked tiles, dirty grout and loose or rusted gutters (if you’re selling a knockdown or “renovator’s
- delight”, this step often isn’t necessary)
- Eliminate any pet smells
- Furnish the home in an attractive but not overly cluttered or personal way, to give potential buyers a perspective on room sizes and to present the home in its best light
- Hire a profession to work with you on achieving the sale and pay for professional photographs and good marketing
After you’ve tackled the any-time-of-year jobs, you can focus on seasonality and how it may influence how you present and market your home.
Some properties, such as holiday houses by the coast or river and elevated properties that get cool breezes, particularly lend themselves to being sold in summer. Likewise, homes that are generally quite dark and cold in winter. If a property has a lot of unshaded, west-facing windows and gets particularly hot in the afternoon, it may be worth holding inspections only in the mornings, or you may want to consider selling in a different season. If you do need to cool down a property, try to do so a few hours before any inspections so that potential buyers will feel very comfortable as they look through. During this season, when looking at accessorise with such items as cushions and throw rugs etc, opt for cooler blues and greens.
Autumn can often be a busy time in real estate, as families have had time to recover from the summer holidays and get into a new school year before thinking about moving house. As the weather can vary, again remember to keep the home comfortable during inspections. In autumn, that could mean turning on the air-con one day and the heater the next! For accessories, think of a few cosy touches that suit the cooler temperatures, such as textured cushions and warmer colour tones.
Homes that get great winter light can really stand out during the cooler months. Those west-facing windows that were a problem in summer can make for a real bonus from June through August. Draw back the curtains and blinds on all windows and let as much light and warmth in as possible. If your on the market through the depths of winter ensure your heating system is working whether it be the reverse cycle or your fortunate to have a wood fire place ensure it is on and this will create a homely feel of comfort. Turn on all the lamps and add some warm reds and oranges to your soft furnishings.
Also, be sure to consult your agent about the best time of day to show your home. For example, if you have lots of north-facing windows and receive plenty of winter sunshine, you’ll probably want to show it during the day.
Ensure the property is well aired, especially if you’re just moving out of cooler weather and the home has been closed up a lot. Remove any mould spots from ceilings, walls and window frames that might have crept up in winter. Because people favour the outdoors in spring, it’s a good time to focus on getting those outside areas up to scratch. Fertilise the lawns and gardens to freshen them up from winter. If your pavers are dirty, pressure-wash them, and recoat tired, weathered decks. Finally, add some bright touches to suit the season, such as cushions and towels.
Now your prepared for whatever season you decide is time to sell. Remember there is no right or wrong time to go to market, listen to your agent as they know what is best to ensure you achieve that sale at the best possible price.