As we prepare to enter the holiday shopping season, home sellers may think it is too late to sell their home this year. You may have heard that homes sell better in the spring, so you might be tempted to take your home off the market until after the New Year. After all, you have shopping to complete, baking to do, decorating to finish and myriad programs and activities vying for your time.
However, a survey of real estate agents shows that while Thanksgiving Day typically is set aside for families, Black Friday and the remainder of the weekend are days when serious buyers have more time to look for a home. In fact, sixty-eight percent of agents surveyed agreed that the buyers out looking on Black Friday are serious about buying a home.
During the holidays, serious sellers can offer extra bonus items to entice buyers: a new washer and dryer or big-screen TV. Motivated sellers could offer holiday discounts, or offer to cover some of the buyer’s fees. Committed sellers may consider dropping their asking price, thereby lowering the effective tax rate on the home—a terrific value to homebuyers.
Sellers can take advantage of Black Friday sales to upgrade appliances and fixtures to improve their home’s appeal. Tasteful holiday decorations add curb appeal, too! Seasonal accents and colorful baskets of mums or pumpkins add a burst of interest to porches and walkways. Brightly painted doors graced with wreaths add a welcoming touch, and new door hardware and carriage lamps add that extra boost of pleasant hospitality to your home’s exterior.
Remember the little touches. Adding a little pumpkin spice or the smell of fresh baked cookies to your home gives buyers the sense of celebration and warmth. They can imagine celebrating the holiday there next year with their own family.
If you are a motivated seller, talk to your agent about ways to make your home more exciting or enticing to holiday buyers, and how to increase your curb appeal.
More than forty percent of agents responding to a survey believe that sellers perceive Black Friday homebuyers to be serious, and would likely entertain or accept offers during this time. Buyers with preapproved mortgages have increased bargaining power, especially when sellers want to close the sale by the end of the year.
If you are in the market for a home, talk to your agent about shopping on Black Friday or the remainder of the holiday weekend. Both you agent and motivated home sellers will know that you are serious and will make time for you. If you have picked out the home you want, consider making your offer during the holiday weekend instead of waiting. In the spirit of the holiday, some sellers may be more inclined to accept your offer, or add other values or incentives to the home … so tell your agent what you want, and what would seal the deal for you.