As fall quickly approaches, many homeowners begin to wonder whether they should sell their home now or wait until spring. Wondering what the answer to this question is?
The answer is…well it depends. Just because the summer has officially ended doesn’t mean that homes are not going to be sold for the remainder of the year. Real estate is being sold 365 days a year, period.
The fall season can actually be a great time to be selling a home. There are many pros to selling a home in the fall, but certainly some cons as well. If you decide that you want to sell your home during the fall, it’s important that you understand what it takes to get it done. Below you will find some of the best tips on selling a home during the fall.
ANALYZE THE MARKET & PRICE YOUR HOME RIGHT
It’s important that if you decide to sell your home in the fall, you first analyze the current state of your local real estate market. While you may not know how to do this, if you reach out to an experienced real estate agent, they should be able to help you with this. There are many things you should analyze about your market.
First and foremost, understanding the type of market your area is experiencing is important. Is your local real estate market in the midst of a sellers market, a buyers market, or a balanced market?
What is the easiest way to define what a sellers market is, what a buyers market is, and what a balanced market is?
Seller’s market- A sellers market exists when there is a large number of ready, willing, and able home buyers in the market to purchase a home but there is shortage in the supply of homes for sale. Buying a home in a sellers market often results in a buyer paying market value or above market value.
Buyer’s market – A buyers market exists when there are more homes available for sale than there are ready, willing, and able homebuyers in the market. Selling a home in a buyers market often results in a buyer being able to purchase a home for market value or less than market value.
Balanced market – A balanced market exists when there are a similar number of homes for sale in relation to the number of ready, willing and able homebuyers. Balanced markets often result in a homes sale price being relatively close to the market value.
It’s important to know what type of market your area is experiencing and price your home accordingly. Since every real estate market is different, consult with a local experienced real estate agent to find out what type of market your area traditionally experiences during the fall season.
PERFORM APPLICABLE INSPECTIONS & CLEANINGS
There are specific maintenance tasks that homeowners should take throughout the year. If you’re planning on selling your home in the fall, there are a few inspections and cleanings that you should tackle, prior to listing your home for sale.
One of the most important components in your home is the HVAC system. It’s recommended by heating and cooling professionals that you have your HVAC system inspected and cleaned yearly. Since a furnace is not run very often throughout the summer months and is run often during the winter months, depending on where you reside, the fall is a great time to have your HVAC system inspected and cleaned.
One of the most common problems resulting from home inspections relates to a homes furnace. At the very least, it’s very common for a buyer to ask a seller to have the furnace inspected and cleaned prior to closing. Having your furnace inspected and cleaned by a HVAC specialist prior to selling your home can be beneficial as you can provide the receipt as proof it has already been completed!
Another important inspection and cleaning that should be done if you’re selling your home in the fall is in regards to the chimney. If your home has a wood-burning fireplace, it’s recommended you have it inspected and swept yearly. Similar to a furnace, since the fireplace is rarely used in the summer months and frequently during the winter, the best time to have it inspected and swept is the fall. Again, a professional chimney company should do this inspection.
DECORATE & EMBRACE THE FALL SEASON
Interior decorating and staging can be a huge help in expediting the sale of a home. It is also important to understand that decorating and staging is not the primary reason a home sells, that normally relates to the price. If you decide to sell your home during the fall, there are many decorating tips, staging tips, and ways to embrace the fall season. During the fall season you have some very popular holidays such as Halloween and Thanksgiving. Don’t hesitate on getting your home decorated for the upcoming holiday as it can help a potential homebuyer envision themselves in your home during these holidays.
While it’s a great idea to decorate and embrace the fall season, don’t go overboard. It’s not a good idea to decorate your home with gory Halloween decorations and props. The last thing you want is for a potential buyer to walk in your front door to be greeted by a bloody skull hanging from your entryway ceiling fan. Be tactful with your decorating and try to appeal to the masses!
CLEAN UP THE EXTERIOR
One feature that today’s homebuyers want when buying a home is a nice outdoors space. One of the biggest mistakes that sellers make when selling their home in the fall is they neglect the exterior of their home. Another very important tip for selling a home during the fall is to ensure that you clean up the exterior of your home.
The number one place where homeowners who are selling their home in the fall drop the ball is forgetting to clean up their yard. There are some “clean up” tasks that should be completed when selling a home during the fall. Some of the most important fall “clean up” tasks that should be completed when selling a home during the fall include:
- Raking leaves
- Remove loose sticks
- Weed flower beds
- Trimming flowers, bushes, and shrubs
- Aerate the lawn
Another exterior clean up task that is extremely important but often overlooked by homeowners is the cleaning of their gutters. Before selling your home in the fall, make sure you have your gutters cleaned. The reasons it’s so important to have your gutters cleaned is because clean gutters can help prevent ice damming and the damage that results from it.
PREPARE YOUR HOME FOR SHOWINGS
It’s important to know how to properly prepare your home for showings, whether you’re selling your home in the spring or the fall. If you decide to sell your home in the fall, there are certain things that you can do in addition to the normal preparation tasks such as de-cluttering. One of the best ways to prepare your home for showings when selling in the fall is to ensure your home smells good. One of the most common reasons a potential buyer is scared away from a home is because there are foul odors. A popular way to make your home smell good is by baking a cake or pie. Since you’re selling your home in the fall, consider baking an apple or pumpkin pie. Other popular ways to make your home smell good while selling it in the fall include;
- Brewing a fresh pot of pumpkin coffee
- Boiling cinnamon sticks
- Burn fall scented candles
Another important tip to prepare your home for showings during the fall seasons is to make sure you turn on all the lights in your home. Since the number of daylight hours in the fall decreases, it’s more likely your home will be shown when it is dark outside. Having all the lights on in your home for showings will help make your home appear larger. If you don’t turn all of the lights on, your home may appear dark, small and uninviting!
Selling a home in the fall can be a great time to sell a home, if the proper steps are taken. The reality is that selling a home in the fall is not for everyone however. The above tips for selling a home in the fall can help expedite the sale of your home and also maximize the sale price! If you’re thinking of selling your home in the fall, make sure when interviewing prospective real estate agents to sell your home, you ask the proper questions. Make sure the real estate agent has experience in selling homes during the fall (and winter) seasons. Ask prospective real estate agents if they are able to assist you with staging ideas or if they have any special marketing tactics they will use.