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Archive for Holiday Homes

Why Fall and Winter are Prime Selling Months in Real Estate

Fall officially began Sept. 23, but that doesn’t mean you should scrap plans for selling your home this year. In fact, October, November and December can actually be good months to sell. Now is the time to plan for it if you’ve even considered putting your home on the market.

For decades, the conventional thinking was that if you missed the spring selling season, you missed the boat. Once summer rolls around and school starts shortly after that, families are more settled, the thinking went, and therefore less inclined to pick up and move (unless a job change or other

Spring is still the busiest time overall. But there’s plenty of action happening after Labor Day through Christmas….

circumstance forced them).

Also, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s and the January cold snaps follow the start of school. In the past, no one wanted to take time to drive around looking at homes when all of this was happening.

Things have changed. Today’s buyers aren’t necessarily timing a home purchase or sale around school schedules because people tend to settle down later in life and live longer. The result is urban expansion; more single, first-time and millennial buyers as well as baby boomers looking to buy (and sell). Also, a lot of home-shopping, at least initially, happens online and via apps. Buyers don’t have to take time out of their busy schedules to drive around — they can just sit down with a tablet on the couch.

As a result of the Internet, our hectic schedules and mobile lifestyles, the fall months are no longer a real estate dead zone. True, spring is still the busiest time overall. But there’s plenty of action happening after Labor Day through Christmas, enough to make it worth your while to put up the ‘For Sale’ sign.

Here’s why.

Buyers are still out there: As mentioned, buyers never stop looking. A serious buyer is looking at new homes online 24/7, even through the holidays. If the right home appears, they’re ready to move. In fact, it could be that buyers in the early winter months are even more motivated than buyers in warmer months because there is less going on. They have fewer distractions and are laser focused on finding a home.

There’s less competition: A lot of people still buy into the old thinking that real estate slows to a crawl by October and virtually stops from Thanksgiving until, say, Valentine’s Day. As a consequence, many potential sellers figure there’s no reason to go on the market during these months. So they wait for spring. And that’s good news for you, because less inventory on the market = less competition for you.

Even January can be a good time to sell: By now you’re probably thinking about all the disruptions to your life that selling a home during the holidays might cause. For instance, you’re in the middle of wrapping Christmas gifts when your agent calls. She wants you to leave the house right away so she can bring a motivated buyer by for another look.

If the potential for disruptions concerns you, put your home on the market in January. Inventory will still be very tight, and there will still be buyers out there looking. In fact, with the holidays over, there may even be more buyers out in January than in December. Also, January buyers may be more motivated. They’ve started doing their taxes and realize they need to buy. Or they’ve set a New Year’s resolution to buy a home within the next 12 months.

Ultimately, as we enter the final quarter of 2014, there will no doubt be plenty of motivated buyers in the market, searching for just the right home at a time when there’s less inventory. Doesn’t that sound like a good time to sell?

Courtesy of AOL

Holiday Home Decorating even the Smallest Space

Christmas is our most favorite time of the year! Even though your space might be outgrowing yourself, thanks to Zillow, there are a few great tips for decorating even the smallest space…

Do you live in a small space and feeling challenged when it comes to holiday decorating options? Just because that 8-foot Noble Fir won’t fit in your living area, doesn’t mean your vision of holiday decorating and celebration should be squelched. Check out these 10 decor ideas for the holidays, and you’ll be set for the cheer of the season.

Dress your door

Your front door sets the tone for what is happening on your interior. Dress your front door with an evergreen swag adorned in elements showcased within your home.

A bit of wired ribbon, branches and feathers can do the trick — and be scaled to an appropriate size for your space.

Leverage your side tables

Let side tables do their part by dressing them with decorative and functional elements. A dining sideboard can work double duty holding cheery napkins, small gifts and silverware overflow for your holiday guests.

Create a table setting

Mix and match holiday dishes with china and chargers. Layer in holiday napkins and table linens for a simple, yet beautiful addition to your decor.

Try setting the table a few hours before the party so guests can enjoy the sophisticated or whimsical look. Don’t forget to incorporate the dining chairs, too, by adding a greenery detail to the back of the chair or a patterned pillow to the seat.

Show off a garland

Your banister or railings can add to your holiday decor, too. Take fresh garland to new heights with a string of lights and wired ribbon. Simply blend in ornaments you may typically use on a tree, layering different colors and textures for depth.

Spruce up your bar cart

If space is limited, you might not be able to hang every ornament you own on a tree, but there’s no reason to keep them all boxed up, either. Look for unexpected places to add in the color of ornaments by trying them on a bar cart, kitchen bowl or over a bathroom doorway for added sparkle.


Begin a countdown

Walls and mantles can be an incredible asset for small space holiday decorating. The December countdown is easy with an advent calendar in the form of garland. Drape your wall or mantle with the numbered fabric piece and add in holiday goodies to be discovered each day of the month.

Create a sweet treat

When hosting guests, whip up desserts and drinks that reflect the holidays and your decor. Cupcakes with sprinkles or even a hot cocoa bar for kids can instantly create a reason for holiday celebration.

The trays, cake stand or plates you place them on can make a difference, too, so be sure to take that into consideration when displaying your treats.

Celebrate stockings

Stockings are a personal element that can add a festive feel to your holiday decor.  Monogram stockings for family, friends or pets so all feel included in the celebration.

Choose fabrics that complement your interior while adding interest to the season. Throughout the month, tuck gifts into each stocking to keep them guessing!