Get your home ready to sell over winter

Selling your home can take a lot of preparation. It’s easy to put off those nagging tasks on your selling to-do list and leave them for a rainy day. The great thing about winter, however, is that there are plenty of those days. With the darker evenings and chillier weather, it’s the perfect season to work your way through your list and get the ball rolling on selling your house, ready to hit the ground running in the New Year.

Hamburg - Selling your home in 2019? Use the winter evenings productively for a smooth new year sale.

1. Finish the bits and bobs

The DIY tasks you’ve been meaning to get to, and any fixes or upgrades work you’ll need to contract out, can all be completed while the weather outside is frightful. It’s a great time to give rooms a lick of fresh paint, to re-do any glossing and varnishing, and to deep-clean carpets.

Although tasks on the exterior of the house, like fixing stone work and repainting the front of the house, may have to wait until better weather, it can still be good to take stock of them at this time of year. Look over your garden and make sure leaves and log piles are tidy, driveways are well kept and plants are pruned. Remember, all of these maintenance tasks will help with your property value too.

2. Find your real estate agent

If you haven’t already, utilise the winter months to look for an estate agent who meets your needs. They should be local experts and used to selling your type of property. You can also take this time to speak to them in detail about what you’d like from a new property, if you’re purchasing too, so they can start suggesting some potential options in that spectrum.

3. Organise with your estate agent

While everything is a little quieter over winter, sit down with your estate agent and draft a timeline. Decide on an ideal selling date, and come up with some contingency plans around different scenarios – what if you sell quicker than intended or if it takes a lot longer? Your estate agent will be able to help you keep your timeline realistic, with their insights into market conditions and information about how similar properties are faring. You can also start preparing any outstanding documentation – a more tempting prospect in front of the fire with a warm drink in hand.

4. Get everyone on the same page

Since the winter tends to by the season for cosy family gathering, why not use the time to make sure that everyone relevant is on board with selling the home. Check you and your family are on the same page for timelines, and take the time to explain some of the ins and outs to children if you need to. Relatives can also help with contingency plans, for example if you need to vacate your home earlier than planned, store bulky belongings, or have your pets out of the way.

5. Start staging

If you’re already a little more advanced in the process, now might be a good time to start staging your home. Staging can be as simple as minimising your personal belongings on show, or as dramatic as painting the rooms back to simple neutrals. You can also add seasonal interior touches for a truly cosy and inviting staged home.

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