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What do Winter Buyers Want?

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The Winter Market Buyers

Attracting Good Buyers

There is a fine art to knowing when to sell your home. Generally, we all hear about the spring selling season and all the joy that this brings for those moving about the market. But given current conditions, selling throughout winter can be just as, if not more profitable depending on your location.

For example, the Commonwealth Bank and CoreLogic RP Data Home Buyer Index for January this year showed that while most states were balanced markets or favoured buyers, on a capital city level this was markedly different. Sydney was pegged as an extreme sellers market, with Melbourne also sitting in favour of vendors. Meanwhile, Perth and Adelaide sat as balanced markets, meaning there were opportunities for people on both sides of the purchase.

Clearly, there are many areas where selling now can be a very good idea. But if you are listing your home for sale in the coming months, what exactly will buyers be looking for?



Intact Comforts

When you buy a property during or on the cusp of winter, especially as an owner occupier, it shouldn't be a fixer-upper. Having to spend time and money doing up a home so it is warm in the winter on a limited time frame is a real hassle, so when you list your home make sure it will keep the heat in.

This is something we have discussed in our April home checklist, but it bears repeating. Check your windows, ceiling, doors and any vents for cracking or wear and tear. Seal these, and make sure your curtains are the right material to efficiently retain the heat of the day. The Federal government YourHome website is a treasure trove for tips and tricks for making this work, as is that checklist.


A Quick Deal

While there are pockets of great selling activity during winter, the old adage remains true that there is generally less on the market during these colder months. House hunters looking during this period typically are in the mood for a quick deal, or think they can get a markdown on what they will have to pay in spring.

However, less stock on the market means less competition, and the buyers who are searching are going to mean business - it's too cold for tyre kickers! This could enable you to exact a quick deal at the price you set, provided your home is adequately set up to be something they can move into immediately! The right agent can really bring it home at the negotiating table in this regard.




The Right Light

If you have a fireplace in your home, it can be a real selling point in the winter. In fact, heaters, candles and clear lighting can all create a warm, comfortable atmosphere in the home. As sunshine hours decline (to as little as 4 or 5 per day in parts of Tasmania, according to the Bureau of Meteorology), it is important to prevent your home from becoming too dark.

Change your bulbs, perhaps go with some brighter colours in living areas and strategically place lamps and other lighting effects to maximise the brightness and warmth of your property.

Overall, the main principles of selling a home in winter are not too far removed from those in the warmer months. However, if this is the path you want to take, there should be a clearer focus on the indoor comforts. Buyers looking to move in immediately don't want to waste time having to clear gutters, or fix up walls and doors - they want to be able to get straight to living.

Present a wholesome home, and you'll be set for those winter buyers!


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