Decorating for the Holidays with your Home For Sale

I believe you can still decorate your home even if it is currently on the market for sale. The trick is to know when to say when. Sometimes too much holiday spirit can really turnoff buyers. Today’s buyer has a load of choices. They are trying to come and see the house, not tippy-toe over the giant blow-up Santa blocking the front door!

If my clients are interested in celebrating a holiday I usually encourage them to do so. I have also been known to offer up the following advice:

Don’t Overdo it!

A good rule of thumb is…to keep it conservative, classy and tasteful. Try not to use “cute” decorations. Try not to clutter your home and make it look small and tight. Remember less is more. “For every holiday decor item put on display, temporarily pack something you keep out all the time. That way you can avoid over-decorating,” says staging and real estate pro Tori Lynn Wallitsch with Alliance Real Estate and Ross Designs LLC in Omaha, Neb. Finally, if a large tree is going to dominate the room please consider putting up a small or desktop this year.

Colors are good…Red and green are colors that add excitement and warmth to a home. Consider using greenery around a fireplace mantel. Use vibrant colors like red to make rooms pop and add holiday cheer. Don’t underestimate the power of neutral palettes too in your holiday decor, such as silvers and classic whites. Above all  please be sure the holiday colors you add do not clash with your homes current color schemes.

Home purchases are made with the heart and senses…Put buyers in the mood to buy with the sound of some festive holiday music. The music I recommend would include anything soft in nature or an instrumental. Never be afraid to wet a potential purchaser’s appetite with the smell of fresh baked goods. Who can resist the smell of fresh baked cookies or maybe just a candle burning if your pressed for time.

You never get a 2nd chance at a 1st impression…Twinkling clear, white lights (preferably non-blinking) tend to be the favorite among staging and real estate professionals for classy holiday curb appeal that adds a glow to your listings at night. Winter months tend to be the most difficult time of year to show off a home’s curb appeal. Some well placed light and decorations could really help a home’s exterior appearance. Please try and stay away from a large number of blinking lights.

Here some holiday curb appeal tips:

  • Add poinsettias: Plant several poinsettias in groups of three or five close together in the garden. Hang a wreath on the front door (and make sure it’s clean
  • Have battery-operated candle lamps in each of the windows for extra glow and to show off all of those windows at night.
  • Make the deck sparkle. For example, a weather-proof, tip-proof tree with lights or a simple strings of lights along the deck’s railing can go a long way in adding charm to your showings after dark.

Remove decor Promptly after the Holidays…I grew up down the street from a home that would leave all their decorations on the house all year long. At five years old I knew this was very strange. Now at forty, I know that most everyone agrees. Please take down your interior and exterior lights by New Years, Christmas in July is not for everyone.

Happy Holidays!

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