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Ready. Set. Rain. Winter Real Estate.

Weather reports this time of year are pretty straight forward in Portland; rain with the chance of more rain and the possibility of more rain, maybe even snow after that. We set our clocks back (we might have remembered to change the smoke detector batteries at the same time and settle in for dark cold nights. Dark, wet, rain and cold make selling a house even tougher if you don’t do something to address it. So what do we have to consider when selling a home in winter?

Fall leaves are beautiful when still attached to the tree but are less so on the ground. They also become slip hazards on some surfaces. Curb appeal still counts.

If your potential buyers and their agents have to find the front door by Braille before fumbling with the key-box and door, they’re going to be put off.  Consider leaving the front porch light on or putting something outside on a timer that will help light the entrance to the house.

It is entirely possible for the inside of a house to be in the forties when it is in the fifties outside. Cold inside for some reason feels colder than cold outside. If you can see your breath inside, the odds of a buyer lingering to fall in love with the property is diminished. Especially with vacant houses, there needs to be some consideration to bursting pipes. Thank God it is warmer here than other places. Even with the heat (with and adjustable thermostat, if possible) set to 60 the comfort level is noticeable.

If we get to the freezing rain point of the year, that has to be addressed. The homeowner is responsible to the curb, including the pubic sidewalks, outside their property.

Real estate doesn’t stop in the winter.  Typically there are fewer listings and fewer buyer all other things being equal but those sellers and buyers are usually more serious as a whole in winter months.    In our current market, that statement may need adjusting as some summer sellers that expected their properties to sell before now are still on the market.

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