Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Creating Curb Appeal in Winter

The old cliché is that location, location, location is the number one rule in real estate. In general, this is true. There is, however, a second major rule regarding the actual act of selling your home. This rule is to create as much curb appeal as possible.

Selling your home in the current cool real estate market can be a challenge. Make the decision to sell it in the winter, and you can have a real challenge on your hands.

Curb appeal is critical when it comes to moving your property. Why? Well, the home purchasing process is an emotional one. Yes, there are a lot of hard factors that go into it such as the area, price compared to the market, schools and so on. At the end of the day, however, the buying process is still pretty much about love at first site. If a buyer sees your home and immediately pictures themselves living there, you stand an excellent chance of getting an offer.

If you decide to sell your home during the winter months, the issue of curb appeal can become a big one. One of the central themes of creating curb appeal is to buff out your yard. Adding plants, cleaning up the verge and so on are always recommended. What if you live in an area where the winter months mean dead plants? Well, you are going to need to get creative.

The first step to dealing with your yard in the winter months is to make sure it is clean. Buyers in the area are not expecting anything great because they already know everything dies during the winter. While this is true, you can still take the extra step of having a clean and tidy dead yard. Sweep up all leaves, trash and so on. Make sure paths are cleaned and edged. Essentially, you want people to be able to envision how it might look in the summer months. This leads us to our second step.

If at all possible, you want to hunt down pictures of your home from the summer months. The pictures should include views of the home with the landscaping in full bloom and healthy. These pictures should be added to your marketing material. You should also put them on prominent display during an open house or when you show the home to a prospective buyer. The goal is to let the buyer know the yard actually will grow back and it will look pretty nice when it does.

Selling your home in the winter might sound like a challenge. By taking these steps, however, you can actually make your home stand out from others around it.