The Home-Selling Market in Fall and Winter

 According to the traditional beliefs of the real estate world, the best time to sell a house is in the late spring and early summer. That’s when school has ended, making it easier for families to relocate; the weather is warm, keeping everyone’s spirits high; and the daylight lasts longer, providing more time for house showings.

However, what if you, as a potential home seller, need to move quickly and it’s the latter half of the year? Not to worry—there are a number of things you can do to make your house just as appealing in the colder seasons as it is in the warmth of summer.

Below are some tips and tricks to keep in mind.

Benefits of selling in the fall and winter

While the late fall and winter are generally considered the off-season for real estate, there are a number of benefits to selling your home at that time of year. For one, while you may get throngs of visitors to your open house in summer, it is not likely that all of them, or even a large percentage, are serious buyers. Warm weather and the fun of looking at different houses tend to attract a lot of window shoppers. When it’s cold, however, you know that only the serious potential buyers are out. This can even lead to a faster sale.

Similarly, since most people sell their homes when it’s warm, summer sellers have to deal with a great deal of competition—often from similarly-priced houses in the same neighborhood. In winter, you don’t have that problem, letting your listing rise to the top of the pile. This can attract more attention from those serious winter buyers, and since the real estate agents are not as busy in the off-season, they can put their full attention and energy into selling your house.

Finally, and most interestingly, aggregated studies show that homes actually sell for slightly more in the winter than they would in the peak season. This is largely due to the determination of real estate agents to price the property just right, coupled with the potential buyers’ fear of losing a good property during the time of year when there are not as many homes to choose from. Because of this, you don’t need to set your home at a lower initial price point. Always do your research into trends in your area before settling on a final initial cost. For instance, in the past month, homes in Nampa, Idaho, have sold for an average of $218,000.

Focus on brightening the home

Just because the buyers are more determined doesn’t mean that you can slack off on the traditional mainstays of selling a house, like fixing it up and staging the interior. Regardless of the season, buyers are still attracted to aesthetics. Start by following the basics: If you live in a snowy area, keep your driveway and sidewalks clear of snow, wash your windows to keep them clear looking, and add a coat of paint to make the exterior pop in the duller winter light. If you’re selling in fall, you can incorporate seasonal flair like wreaths, leaf art, and seasonal plants to make your house seem more welcoming.

Also, pay close attention to your trees and bushes. Even if they are not at the most attractive phase of their growing cycle, they should still seem maintained. Inside, brighten up each room with extra lamps and other light sources. You can make them feel more open by removing excessive furniture and clearing off knick-knacks from your tables.

Selling a home is complicated in any season, but just because it’s the latter half of the year doesn’t mean you have to have additional challenges. If you keep your exterior bright and welcoming, you will attract dedicated autumn and winter buyers, and will soon be well on the road to selling your home.

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Written By Suzie Wilson of

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