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How to Sell Your Home in the Winter

Winter in Chicago means a lot of things to different people. It means holidays spent with families for some, weekend-long Netflix marathons for others. It means embracing the wind and the cold and the shoveling for some, and relaxing trips to much warmer climes for others. But given the freezing, brutal weather, can winter in Chicago mean it’s time to sell your home?

Believe it or not, the answer is yes! In fact, some experts believe that the winter months are actually the ideal time to list your property. Let’s explore why winter may be the right time to sell – and how to make sure your sale doesn’t go into the deep freeze:

Why Sell in Winter?

Remember what we were saying about that blustery Chicago wintertime? Any buyer going out and looking at homes in three to six inches of snow is definitely serious, motivated, and most likely eager to make a commitment. If you position your home in these searchers’ minds, you may have a better chance of securing the sale than in the spring or summertime, when buyers, in our experience, are more willing to explore the city, take their time, and keep their options open.

And speaking of options, the housing market in the winter months actually favors sellers in some ways, most notably in terms of supply. Because conventional wisdom says to put a home on the market in the spring or summer, there is usually a greater supply of homes available in the warmer months. With less inventory on the market, your home is more likely to stand out.

Less competition and more motivation can be a powerful recipe for a successful sale. But how can you make sure your wintertime sale is particularly enticing? Be sure to…

Stage for the Season

There are plenty of seasonal things you can do to get your home looking good! First and foremost, remember that a home necessarily requires more upkeep in the winter; that goes double for a home you’re trying to market and sell. Be sure to keep the sidewalks, stoops, and pathways shoveled and free of ice, and make sure the home’s HVAC and plumbing systems are tuned up and ready to make it through everything that winter has to offer.

Beyond the basics, use the chilly months to play up the idea of your home as a warm, welcoming “winter wonderland.” Consider decorating with lots of blankets and warm accent colors; light and stage candles around the home or make use of any fireplaces or outdoor warming lamps; and put out wintery baked goods, hot cocoa, or cider, to help your visitors warm up and feel at home.

Price It Right

Whether you’re putting your home on the market for the first time or rolling your sale over into the new year, there are a few things you should always be sure to do at year’s end. Most importantly, you and your real estate team should reassess the market conditions in your area and make sure that the property is priced right. Keep an eye on any changes to tax or estate codes that may land in the new year, and be aware of where mortgage rates are – and where they’re going.

The best way to make sure your home sells at any time of year? Partner with a mortgage lender who’s knowledgeable about the local market and may have some financing strategies to make our home more appealing to prospective buyers in a high rate environment.

Get the answers you need to maximize your equity — reach out to me today!


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