Should You Sell Your Home This Holiday Season?

JCAR-Logo-FIThe holidays have arrived and so has the time of year when home sellers wonder whether they should keep their properties on the market or take them off. Or if owners haven’t listed their home yet, they may be asking themselves if they should wait until spring or brave the winter real estate market?

Trying to sell your home during the holidays can be daunting to many homeowners. The season can be extremely busy for families, and the idea of taking on the additional stress of selling a house could be a turnoff to some people.

“Many people consider the holiday season the worst time to sell your home; it’s the time of year when homeowners are hosting family members, putting up favorite decorations and planning vacations,” said Laura Howell, President of the Johnston County Association of REALTORS.  “However, listing a home during the holidays can be extremely advantageous to homeowners, and it doesn’t have to ruin any holiday cheer.”

Here are a few reasons why homeowners should consider listing their homes this winter:

Less Inventory. For many homeowners, selling their home during the winter holidays seems like too much of a hassle, and they will either take their home off the market or wait until the warmer months to list.  “This creates an inventory shortage, which is good news for a seller,” said Howell. “And since there are limited choices for buyers, the homeowner could have a higher asking price.”

Control Your Showings. Homeowners do not need to let their homes be constantly available for showing. “Let your real estate agent know if there are certain days and times that won’t work for your schedule,” said Howell. “You can have blackout dates where there are absolutely no showings, or create a daily schedule outlining when exactly potential buyers can come through the home.” Your agent is there to help make the process go smoothly.

Staging. “Staging your home during winter can be as easy as decorating for the holidays,” said Howell. “Just be careful not to overdo it, as décor that is too large or over the top can distract buyers.” Sellers can also avoid offending potential buyers by using general fall and winter decorations rather than using religious themes.

Motivated Buyers. People hunting for homes during the holidays often have a reason for doing so, meaning that they are more motivated buyers. “Most buyers who aren’t incredibly motivated will put off a home search during the holidays and pick things up again in the spring,” said Howell. “If someone is touring homes instead of celebrating the season with friends and family they likely need to buy a home quickly and could be willing to pay more.”

And of course, the most important thing that you can do to give yourself an advantage is to hire a Realtor, a member of the National Association of Realtors. “Realtors have real insights and unparalleled knowledge of your local market and can help you sell your home this winter so that you and your family can get back to celebrating the holidays,” said Howell.