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Advice for owners who want to sell this winter.

Winter can be cold, dark and wet, which often means properties are unable to promote some of their best features. By incorporating a few simple tips, sellers can enhance their property’s look and feel and increase their chance of attracting an offer.

Sales Director Warren Price, said: “The winter months are traditionally a difficult time for sellers trying to impress buyers with their home.

An inviting atmosphere in these gloomier months is vital and it’s often the smallest changes to a property that can make it stand out above others. Simple things such as ensuring the home is warm and well lit can improve saleability during these cold, dull months and additions such as garden lights to enhance the entrance to your home can stimulate buyers’ imaginations.

“Practical issues are of importance at this time of year too, with the dark days highlighting awareness of light and heating costs. With buyers now concerned more than ever on the running costs of a home; sellers should seek to highlight any energy saving features which will entice an offer out of buyers.”

The NAEA’s top tips for those marketing their property during winter are as follows:

First impressions really do count – winter can often make front gardens and paths look dull and uninviting. Ensuring these are clean and clear of leaves and dirt can often improve the attractiveness of the property. Making sure the doorway, entrance stairs or porch are well lit can help create an inviting home. Giving the front door and front aspect windows a fresh coat of paint will also help give a great first impression to buyers.

Warm and friendly – It’s important to make your house feel warm and homely. If a buyer enters a property that is cold, they’re unlikely to stay long. Ensure the property is adequately heated before buyers arrive to view the property, even if it means using the timer to pre-heat your house if you’re at work during a viewing.

It is also worthwhile highlighting any energy saving features you have in your home such as double glazed windows, insulation or if you have a particularly energy efficient boiler. With the cost of running a home ever increasing, knowing a property is equipped with features that will help save money will increase the attractiveness to the buyer.

Bright and beautiful – Ensure your home is well lit. This means making sure all of your lights work including the security lights, before a viewing takes place. If a viewing takes place during the day, open all of the curtains and blinds to ensure as much natural light as possible enters the home. This will often add to the atmosphere and make the home look bright and airy.

Having clean windows will also help light enter the property and allow buyers to look out into the garden if the weather is bad, portraying a clean well looked after home.

Clear the garden – Make sure your garden is presentable. This means packing any garden furniture away if it is inclement weather and clearing leaves and debris from the patio and garden paths. A messy garden can signal the need for too much work and effort and thus detract buyers from making an offer.

Can you smell the sale? – It is also worth noting that our sense of smell is 10,000 times more sensitive than any other senses ( it is equally important that the property smells nice. Remove any damp footwear from the entrance-way and even consider opening a few windows in the days before a viewing to freshen up the property.

What’s the weather? – Always try and arrange a viewing on a day that will show your property in the best possible light. If there’s a storm on its way it may be best to re-arrange a viewing once the storm has passed. Allow adequate time to fix any damage such as falling fences.