December is fast approaching and soon radio stations will be broadcasting – much to our chagrin – Christmas music 24 hours a day. While this is a time of parties, entertaining friends & family and gift buying – it’s also the time when the real estate market cools off. The number of buyers normally does diminish however the ones who are shopping are very serious about finding a home so its important for sellers to realize that if they are selling their home during this month, the property still has to be show-ready. Overall presentation and marketability are key to getting buyers in your front door – regardless of the time of year – so over-decorating during the holidays can be a serious miss-step.
If you are selling over the holidays then its important to keep decorating simple with key accessories designed to accentuate focal areas..When buyers go through a home during the holidays, they shouldn’t be overwhelmed with holiday decorations. Not only does it make rooms feel smaller and more cluttered but too many decorations can also make buyers uncomfortable – especially if they don’t celebrate Christmas.
Our top decorating tips while your home is on the market:
Keep Color Palettes Simple & Cohesive: We recommend keeping it to a maximum of 2 main color palettes and separate them by floor, to accentuate and complement your existing décor. Pair gold or platinum with whites, creams or rustic wood hues and add a pop of color like silvery blue or red. Remember, as much as it is the holiday season, your house is still up for sale and buyers need to be able to appreciate your home more than the decorations!
Keep Decorations to a Minimum: Instead of all the wreaths, garland swagging and crowding of decorations on every surface, focus instead on staging impact areas. The tree will be a major focal point so keep it to the simple color palette we recommended above and let this design element be the main – if not only – holiday decoration in your living or family room. Dress table tops with layered centerpieces and add layers to your mantle (remember to keep it to groups of 3’s for balance & symmetry). By choosing select room features to accentuate you still emphasize great room features and add warmth and welcome for your buyers without overwhelming their senses.
Be Careful with Scents: As much as you can, try to keep scents natural as many people have allergies these days. If you get a real Christmas tree, this is a wonderful scent to have in your home. Try some candles with simple scents like vanilla & cinnamon and stay away from scents that are traditionally heavy. If you don’t like candles, layer in some coffee beans in your centerpieces – they give a wonderful natural aroma to the air and naturally cleanse the space they are in.
Keep Decorations Non Denominational: We normally recommend packing away any religious items when selling your home and this strategy still applies over the holidays. By keeping decorations holiday themed, you will welcome buyers of all faiths through the door and make them feel at home in your house.
Keep Lawn Decorations Packed Away: As much as the blow up santa or sleigh with light up reindeer is your favorites, these big decorations take away from buyers noticing what your home looks like. So instead of lawn decorations, focus on a simple light setup and add planters with mixed greenery, birch branches and berries for a simple & classic look over the holiday season.
Layer in Texture: Layers of texture is one of the key ways to add softness and warmth to any space. We traditionally recommend during the holidays to layer in accent pillows and throws with different textures that will soften sofas and chairs. Keep the colors of these elements neutral – whites or creams – as the texture will make these design elements stand out. This adds coziness to any space and makes it very appealing for buyers over the winter months.
Remember, as much as the fall real estate season is cooling down over the holidays, there are still a fair number of buyers who are shopping for homes. By keeping your holiday décor simple, tasteful and welcoming you will ensure that your home’s overall presentation remains highly marketable and appealing.
Rooms in Bloom Home Staging & Design Inc. is a multi-award winning home staging company in the Waterloo Region. Experts at maximizing the presentation and marketability of any home, we specialize in staging vacant properties and builder model homes. For more information on our staging & design services, visit our website or follow us on our Facebook Fan page. To book a staging or design consultation, call us at (519) 804-STAGE.