Planning a Fall Open House

Planning a Fall Open HouseYour home is newly on the market this and you want to have an open house, but you don’t know how to show it best in the shorter autumn days. As the weather turns toward fall and winter, consider these ideas for making your open house bright, warm and welcoming.

Curb appeal

In the spring and summer, it’s easy to make the exterior of your home appealing by keeping the lawn green and trim, adding showy blooms to your flower beds and trimming the hedge. If your lawn is the type that goes dormant in the winter, you know it won’t look its best, but you can make sure it receives a final trim and has clean edges. Keep the leaves raked and bagged, and add fresh mulch to your flowerbeds and the bases of your trees.

To bring some color to your exterior, add some potted chrysanthemums—they come in a multitude of beautiful colors that can display your architecturally interesting porch, fill in blank spaces in your planters or hide pruned bushes. You can even add a little lawn decoration with hay bales, pumpkins, squash or gourds, mums and marigolds, and brightly colored foliage such as crotons. Avoid gaudy or garish decorations, however, as they can be a distraction.

Prepare for inclement weather

All the meteorologists in the world cannot predict with complete accuracy what the weather above your home will be on the day of your open house, so you need to plan for multiple contingencies. That means protecting your entryway from the mud and leaves that an unobservant guest may track in, having places for coats or umbrellas and other weatherproof gear. Here are some options to help:

  • Place a welcome mat outside both the front and back doors especially designed to remove dirt from shoes and boots like this one from LLBean.
  • Designate a place for wet outerwear. When potential buyers arrive during a downpour, it is important to let them know you have planned for them. Have empty hooks, or an empty coat closet available for their wet coats, scarves and hats.
  • Place an umbrella stand just inside the door. If you have room, you can use a combination coat rack and umbrella stand. This decorative rack from the Home Depot has room for both in a stylish but heavy-duty construction.
  • Once winter weather sets in, make sure your sidewalks are swept or shoveled, and that you have removed any ice from pathways and steps.

Create a warm and cheery environment

When it is cooler outside, buyers want to know that the furnace or radiators function. Avoid overheating your home, which can make it uncomfortable for buyers that keep their coats on. Aim for about 70°F. Be sure that windows are caulked and that there are no obvious drafts. If you have a gas fireplace, consider turning it on to add a cheery glow, but if your fireplace is wood-burning, consider using candles inside the fireplace instead since some buyers may be allergic to wood-smoke.

Finally, make sure your windows are clean and sparkling. Open drapes so buyers can see the view, and turn on lights in every room to chase away any dark shadows. You can add seasonal interest with a pretty wreath on the door and pumpkin or spice scents throughout the home.

We can help

When preparing your home for a fall open house, we can help you determine the best way to display your home’s special features.

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