The morning before we were taking photos at a new listing, my client informed me that since I had seen her home the week before, it was now completely decorated for Christmas, including garland on the stairs and three Christmas trees. I told her, “If I can sell your home in two weeks, the decorations will look great in the photos. Otherwise, your home is going to look dated in the photos by January 1st.” Our solution? I showed up early for the photos and we literally moved each tree out of its respective room while the photographer clicked the photos then moved the tree back. We took everything off the mantle. Then, click for photos and moved it back.
Holiday Decorating DON’TS
But what about Christmas decorations during showings? There is a lot of common sense advice on the internet about how to decorate your home for the holidays when it is for sale. In this case, the owner of my listing did a beautiful job with her decorations and I think they will resonate with buyers during showings. In fact, I think she did everything right, according to these DO’s I found on the internet.
Holiday Decorating DO’S
- Clean, declutter and stage before you decorate.
- Stay within the palette of your home’s décor. In my client’s case, her home has a lot of grey and white with red accents. Her Christmas decorations utilized grey, white, red and silver and looked stunning.
- Be “religion neutral”. This means utilizing winter décor such as snowflakes and stars, and other holiday symbols like a Nutcracker or ornaments. You want your home to appeal to a broad array of buyers.
- Go with a smaller tree and decorate in a cohesive theme. Each of my client’s three trees had a different theme and each one fit perfectly into its respective room.
- Avoid large decorations like reindeer, snowmen, or anything that will make a room appear smaller. The same goes for lots of clutter on tables and displays.
- Hang an elegant wreath on the front door.
- Box up the greeting cards. Holiday cards on tables make the room look messy. Stick cards in a drawer or place them in a pretty box to keep them corralled in one place.
- Go easy on holiday scents. For example, my daughter hates the smell of cinnamon. If she walked into a house that smelled like cinnamon, she would turn around and leave. You never want to distract a buyer with too much or the wrong type of scent.
- Light a fire: A roaring fireplace during a weekday showing is a cozy way to celebrate the winter and warm visitors as well.
One more DON’T. DON’T leave your Christmas decorations up after New Year’s Day.
Have you ever had to sell a home during the holidays? What was your strategy?