Holding a house inspection during winter has its challenges, but with a little planning and imagination, there’s no reason a cool weather open can’t be a success.
Just like at any other time of year, the key to making an open house in winter great is to present the property in the best possible light, meeting the market’s expectations of the location and price point. Being cold doesn’t change that basic principle.
In winter, vendors and agents should however pay extra attention to the weather predicted for the day of the open – so they can be ready for wet shoes and flustered buyers in the case of rain. Prepping the property with plenty of time is also important, to ensure any heating has time to kick in before buyers arrive.
Talia Levy, a sales associate and real estate agent with Ray White Double Bay, says a winter open is different to one in the warmer months on several fronts.
On a rainy winter’s day, wet shoes, dripping umbrellas and buyers hurrying through the front door are all to be expected and should be planned for. There is obviously less natural light in winter months too, so the timing of opens in key.
There are positives to selling in winter, though. Levy says that what matters is how you deal with the season’s variables.
Levy says it’s up to the agent and owners to work closely together to create a welcoming and warm environment for buyers, even if it’s a miserable day outside.
She shares her top tips for handling an open in winter, which fall under the three following areas.
Levy says vendors and agents can use a number of strategies if it’s wet on the day of an open, including the following.
Presentation and styling are always important, but especially so in winter, Levy says.
“No matter the time of year, you want to make sure the property is presented as best it can be, but there are a few things you can do differently in winter.”
While it may be tempting if the heavens open, never cancel an advertised open for inspection, Levy advises.
“We simply never cancel an open for inspection. In fact, some of my busiest opens have been in pouring, pouring rain. And on a wet day, the people who turn up are the serious buyers; the ones who really want to look and potentially buy, not just people having a sticky beak, which can sometimes happen on a fine day.”
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