Winter is coming, and you're considering whether or not to sell your home in Bucks County. If you're experiencing some reservations, then you're not alone.
Many believe that the winter months are the worst for selling homes. But why?
Well, the reasoning is fairly simple: It's cold and wet and icy out, so people just aren't looking to move homes in the midst of all their other holiday business. And on top of that, the dreary weather means that any homes for sale won't look their absolute best.
That's the thinking anyway... but what's the reality?
Here are the facts: The real estate market does tend to dip around the festive season. There are less homes on the market, and less people looking to buy them. But if you dig a little deeper, these facts reveal some surprising opportunities that could actually lead you to sell your home faster, and for a higher price.
Unbelievable? Well consider this:
First, there are fewer casual house hunters around. Winter buyers tend to be more serious and readier to close a deal.
Next, there's less competition, so those keen buyers are all yours! You can set realistic prices, with less bargaining and bidding to worry about.
And furthermore, there are a whole host of what you might call "soft" advantages as well:
- Setting up in winter means you can establish your profile and get a jump on the spring market.
- The weather gives you a great opportunity to really sell certain features, like energy efficient utilities, weatherization upgrades, and cozy fireplaces.
- Homes could be partially hidden by snow - meaning less exterior prep work for you.
- For many people the holiday season has positive home-related associations that you can appeal to.
So, let's dive right in with some hand tips for selling your Bucks County home in winter:
4 Tips for Selling Your Home in Winter
Kick the winter out. Things will be covered in snow and ice and it'll be difficult to get around. So make sure the drives and walkways are well-shoveled and salted. This might mean a lot more work for those bigger properties, but try your best to make it look effortless.
Keep it light - in more ways than one! Open those windows, switch on those lights, swap out the bulbs that aren't "warm" enough. You could even spruce the place up with a few flowers. Get rid of the clutter and keep holiday decorations to an elegant, classy minimum.
As an added tip: Think about how you're going to keep your place clean. Boots off at the door for a start, and where are those umbrellas going to go? The mud, grit, snow, and rain will find their way in eventually, so keep a broom handy.
Market what matters - Fire place, hot tub, great insulation, and sealed windows... If you've got it, flaunt it! The weather will make sure that these are features that buyers care about, so use them to your advantage and separate your house from the pack.
Make it easy - Things are difficult in winter. People are busy and the weather always has some surprises up its sleeve. So, do what you can to keep potential house buyers happy. Crank up the heat, provide some winter-appropriate snacks and refreshments, put on some music.
Also: The incentive to look for homes online is stronger than ever in winter. So make sure your online presence is polished and ready to go. Include a range of high-quality pictures that show off the property in a range of seasons.
If you'd like more advice about selling your home in the winter and you live in Bucks County, PA, contact local real estate expert Russell Volk or keep reading about winter home selling tips that are specific to Bucks County.
Selling Bucks County Homes in Winter
There are many different types of homes and properties in Bucks County, and each can has its own specific issues for selling in the winter. Here are some home-style-specific tips to make sure you've got your bases covered:
If you live in one of the more dense urban areas, like Levittown or Morrisville (or the surrounding Fairless Hills, Bristol, and Croydon), you might have some special challenges ahead. The minimal-traditional design of the homes mean that many don't have raised, separated, or covered entryways. You'll have to keep these clean and clear. Luckily, these areas aren't known for their ostentatious landscaping either - so a smooth, snowy lawn is just what buyers will be expecting - just make sure to keep that walkway welcoming and walkable.
Out in one of Bucks County's more historic areas, like Newtown, you'll have a different set of concerns. The older heritage homes in these parts are bigger, and may not have the best insulation or utilities. Stay alert for drafts, leaks, dark corners, and cold spots. On the plus side, these older colonial homes are primed to look they fell straight out of a holiday postcard, so emphasize that warm light beaming out of the big sash windows, and work your magic with a strategically placed wreath or two.
If you're out in the sticks, do your best to assist with transport and directions - getting out to farms in the winter is tough. On the larger properties, you can also make things clearer by staking out the property with high visibility markers. Get the fire roaring in advance to get the larger homes toasty before buyers show up.
Bucks County's many suburbs feature large new-traditional homes with forward-facing gables, cascading over covered entryways and large garages. Keep those roof lines and gutters clear to give a better impression of their overall design and style. Doylestown, Sellersville and Perkasie, and Richboro will have many homes of this type. A few ornamental winter shrubs out front will also accentuate the charm of these buildings.
And that about wraps it up for home-types...
So - is it worth it to sell your home in Bucks County in the winter? Some signs point to no. But if you've been taking notes, then you'll know that there are great deals to be made over a fresh cup of eggnog. As with any time of year, the right house at the right time makes all the difference. Winter home selling isn't a volume game - it's personal.
Russell Volk is a top Realtor® with RE/MAX Elite with years of experience in the Bucks County Real Estate market. He specializes in helping buyers find the perfect home. Whether you're looking for a townhome, single family home, new construction, 55+/active adult home or a luxury property, contact Russell Volk for professional guidance and expert advice. Russell is also well equipped to handle the sale of properties, and loves helping people sell their home quickly and profitably. To contact Russell directly, call him at 267-566-0999.