The annual holiday season is not a normal time to sell one’s home. Still, there are times when circumstances dictate doing it. The good news is that buyers willing to go looking during that time of year are usually very serious. They want to get something as quickly as they can; something that meets their needs and price point.
Regardless of the time of year, the key to selling a home and getting the best possible price is staging. We have some experience in this area, so we know how critical staging is to holiday season sales. Staging can make the difference between a serious buyer coming in with a serious offer as opposed to a long train of not-so-serious buyers traipsing through your home during the busiest time of the year.
Clean and De-Clutter
The first stage of home staging is always the clean and de-clutter. This first stage is even more important for holiday season sales due to the fact that holiday decorations will be going up around the home. If a home has not been cleaned and de-cluttered prior to decorating, said decorations will only make the home look more cluttered and dirty.
Cleaning should be done with a deep-cleaning mentality. Bear in mind that holiday decorations tend to capture the attention of guests. Consider the Christmas tree as just one example.
You may have the most beautiful tree adorned with spectacular decorations and topped by the best star in the world. As the attention of the guests is drawn to that star, they are also going to see the cobwebs loosely dangling from the crown molding. You don’t want that if you’re trying to sell.
In terms of decluttering, the idea is to make as much open space as possible so that rooms look spacious and inviting even with decorations in place. Remove things like unnecessary furniture pieces, knickknacks, excessive art work, and anything else that is just taking up space.
Aim for a Cozy Feel
We have found that the best way to stage a home during the holiday season is to aim for a cozy feel. It makes perfect sense when you think about it. The Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays are all about family. They are holidays that promote feelings of warmth, coziness, and time spent together. That is the kind of feel you want to create with your staging.
Creating a cozy feel means using elements like warm colors, strategically placed candles, appropriate greenery (think pine cones and wreathes), and a fresh pot of coffee whenever you know a walk-through is imminent. The smell of a fresh pumpkin pie is another great idea.
Lastly, staging during the holiday season means going light on the decorations. You want just enough to create a sense of holiday spirit but not so much that the decorations make the house look cluttered. Be especially wary of holiday lights. Too many lights can seem a bit garish in the modern era of minimalism.
We believe the best way to decorate during the holiday season is to concentrate on accents. Some candles in the windows and a few red ribbons here and there are a good starting point. Add to that a few poinsettias, an elegant but not overbearing Christmas tree, and maybe a few stockings and presents located in just the right place.
Home buyers willing to go out looking during the holiday season tend to know what they want. The point of staging is to convince them that your home is exactly what they are looking for. So stage your home with the holiday season in mind. If you can create the right impression, you can complete the sale.