Our fall weather here in Silicon Valley is acting like spring weather – bouncing back and forth between warm, dry days and cold, wet ones. Should this impact the way you present your home to the real estate market if it’s for sale? Absolutely.
If you want to make the best impression on potential home buyers, your house, townhouse or condo needs to be inviting no matter what the weather may be doing. In the heat of summer, sellers are tempted to close up all the curtains to keep out the sun and heat – it’s a mistake because buyers typically don’t respond well to dark, cave like homes. The wet weather brings different challenges that also must be handled appropriately if you are to snag that best buyer! Here are a few tips to make your listing the one that appeals to Silicon Valley home buyers who come out to see it:
- Make sure that your downspouts are directing rain water away from your house or any structures (often 6′ or more is suggested); it is imperative that there be no “pooling” of water, especially near the home – this will cause buyers to worry about water in the crawl space and what it may be doing (foundation cracks, mold, etc.)
- Trim bushes and vegetation back from walkways and sidewalks. When it’s wet outside, these lovely bunches of greenery collect water and as visitors go past them, they can spill water onto the passers by. Not pleasant. Look at your sidewalks, driveway, and walkway and make sure that wet bushes and branches won’t be hitting anyone coming up to your front door.
- If your gutters leak, they’ll be noticed and will indicate that your property hasn’t been properly maintained, so repair or replace them.
- Indoors, keep the heat on if the temperature would be below the comfortable range – cold buyers don’t linger, and buyers who don’t linger don’t buy! I suggest at least 66-67 degrees.
- Open up the curtains and turn the lights on. Cloudy, rainy weather can make any house look dark and you want to chase the darkness away with good lighting and access to natural light.
- Many home buyers will want to remove their shoes if it’s wet out. If you can provide a bench on the front porch or entryway, that would be very welcoming.
- Keep the air fresh. In the damp days, we sometimes keep homes a little too closed up and that can be unappealing. Baking cookies or bread can help, but there are other things that work too, such as fresh flowers. I don’t recommend scented candles or sprays since these often make buyers wonder what you’re hiding. It’s a matter of degree – you want to make the air pleasant without overwhelming visitors.
When home buyers and their real estate agents venture out on a rainy, wet day to see properties in San Jose, Los Gatos, or anywhere in the Bay Area, you know that they are serious and highly motivated. It may seem like a hassle to take these extra steps for showings of your house or condominium, but it’s well worth it because these are exactly the home buyers you’d like to impress.
For further reading on home selling in Silicon Valley:
Selling your home in Silicon Valley on popehandy.com
Home seller resources on ValleyOfHeartsDelight.com (sister site to this one)