As we slide closer to the holidays you might be thinking that you should either a) take your home off the market until after the new year or b) skip the decorating. Honestly, there’s no reason to do either. Why?
Well, first of all, leaving your home on the market during the holidays is a good thing. After all, your house can’t actually sell if it’s not available, can it? Secondly, your holiday decorations can have a positive influence on a potential buyer (a house that appeals to the senses and sparks feelings of nostalgia can go a long way). With that said, there’s a right and a wrong way to decorate for the holidays when your home is on the market. You can still celebrate the season--no matter what the holiday--but it’s important that you keep your home appealing to potential buyers. Here's how to do it.
1. Nix the excess clutter.
If your house is already full of stuff, then excess decorations are only going to make the buyer's head spin. In general, a cluttered house can easily distract potential buyers from what could possibly the home of their dreams. So, a good rule of thumb (no matter what time of year you are selling) is to give the house a good cleaning and decluttering. The goal is to stage your home in a way that makes it look cozy, rather than chaotic.
2. Pay attention to proportions.
From Christmas trees to American flags and everything in between--proportions are important. The last thing you want is a piece of decor so big it distracts buyers from focusing on what's really important: the home's best features. For example, if your living room is on the small size, make sure the base of your Christmas tree doesn’t occupy too much floor space, which will only make the room look even smaller. It's okay to be festive but do so in a tasteful way that still honors the value of your home.
3. Appeal to their sense of smell.
It seems like each season or holiday has a signature scent. Candles can be nice but overpowering, so be selective in your choices. Diffusing essential oils may be a better option and several companies offer blends ideal for holidays no matter what time of year. Fresh cut flowers are another fragrant choice that can work perfectly. When selling around Thanksgiving or Christmas, cookies in the oven, a basket of spice-scented pinecones, a fresh wreath, and cinnamon sticks simmering on the stove, are a handful of ways to keep the smell subtle and natural.
4. Showcase the best features.
Showcase the best selling points of your home by accentuating them with your decorations. If you have an impressive staircase in the entryway, a beautiful archway, a decorative front door, or a gorgeous fireplace and mantle, be sure to decorate in a way that will draw the eye. For example, a sprig of mistletoe is a great way to draw the eye to an archway without being a distraction. Garland on the mantle is always nice, but it can appear cumbersome if there are other decorations displayed with it. Remember--you don't want to over-decorate the feature to where it takes away from its beauty. Keep it simple and tasteful, with a less-is-more mentality.
5. Coordinate with the rest of the decor.
When decorating, be sure to maintain a color-coordinated design scheme. The goal is to appeal to a variety of buyers. Instead of clashing with the other colors in your room, find holiday decorations that will help you achieve a harmonious look. With the abundance of decorations available at our fingertips, it shouldn't be too difficult to find something that blends in with what you currently have.
6. Depersonalize the decorations.
If you’ve lived a long time in your home, it’s likely that you’ve acquired some very personal decorations. And while they probably bring you a lot of happiness, now is not the time to display them. When selling, you want to keep it neutral so that your home appeals to all sorts of buyers. Not every buyer will enjoy those cute “best mom” tree ornaments your kids made or that oversized nativity scene. The same goes for a wall full of holiday cards or stockings with names on them. For now, just tuck those special items away so they’re ready to be displayed in your new home.
7. Keep it tasteful.
The holidays can be a fun time to decorate, but not all people decorate in the same way. For instance, consider a pretty decorative wreath instead of that overly festive Santa sign on the front door. Inflatable turkey on the front lawn makes you laugh? For some, not so much. When it comes to lights, go easy. Basic white can be festive without blinding.
Remember, a buyer in need won’t let the holidays hold them back from striking a deal. Keeping your home on the market will keep you visible. Just keep those decorations simple, yet festive so they keep attracting potential buyers.
As you decorate for the holidays, be sure to stop by one of our showrooms. Our wide selection of gorgeous designer fabrics, custom furniture, and decorative accessories can make your home look both festive and stylish!