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5 Exterior Home Improvements for Your Winter Sale

December 24, 2020

If you’re preparing to sell your home this winter, the freezing temperatures and piling snow might drive the majority of your efforts inside. However, your home’s curb appeal is equally as important in the winter as it is during the warmer months, if harder won.

Where warm weather offers endless possibilities for exterior home improvements, winter is a time for paying attention to the details. Amidst a blanket of white, there’s less to distract your eye from the small, practical improvements that are needed outdoors, and you have more time to get creative in your approach.

But you don’t have to be a Pinterest master to accomplish big results – here are five snow-savvy home improvements you can make outside to draw buyers in this winter.

Front door with holiday wreath, flanked by silver candle lanterns, white poinsettias, and pine cones
Image courtesy of A Happy Blog

Make your front door the focus

The whole point of curb appeal is to get potential buyers in your door, which is exactly why you should pay some extra attention to your threshold this winter. Accent your front door with décor that embraces the beauty of the season: hang a brightly coloured wreath, add small evergreens in decorative planters, fill a galvanized pail with willow wood for the fire, or keep it classy with a smattering of pinecones and white poinsettias. Just be sure to work with the space you have – an understated arrangement is better than an overcrowded entry.

White sided house in the winter at night, illuminated by ground floodlights
Image courtesy of cast-lighting.com

Give outdoor lighting a glow up

Make your home a bastion of warmth during the coldest, darkest days of the year by finessing your exterior lighting. Start by ensuring that all your exterior lights work and are the same colour temperature, as mismatched light colours can look a little thrown together. Then kick it up a notch with wall-washing or wall-grazing floodlights (the former illuminates the entire exterior wall, while the other accentuates the textures of brick- or stonework in your home’s façade), which literally highlight your home and give it a magical quality. Though you may not be able to do a permanent install of wired lights if you’ve already been hit with snow, solar lights sunk into planters make a great alternative that you can take with you when you move.

House number plaque with attached planter box filled with pine boughs and cones
Image courtesy of KindDesignsLLC on Etsy

Modernize your house number

We seldom pay attention to house numbers, except when we’re squinting through the car window trying to find a particular address (and hoping the drivers behind us don’t mind that we’re doing 15 in a 50 zone!). Give potential buyers a hand and show them your pride of ownership by updating your house number to something fresh and modern. Brushed-metal floating numbers, oversized numerals, or a number plaque with a mounted planter make excellent options – just be wary of selecting a personalized plaque with your family name on it, since it won’t be much use to you when you move to a new address.

Freshly pruned tree branch covered in snow

Prune back trees and shrubs

Though many of us are excited to reach for the garden shears in the cheery sunlight of spring, many plants popular in Canadian landscaping are actually best pruned in late winter. Deciduous trees and shrubs, such as weeping mulberries, Japanese maples, and hydrangeas, benefit from being cut back while they’re dormant. Not only will a late-winter pruning make your yard look extra tidy and well cared for, it will also promote less “bleeding” at the cut sites so trees and shrubs will be healthy and abundant when the new owners move in.

Two rocking chairs with cushions on a winter-time porch, with a table between them decorated for the holidays
Image courtesy of Finding Home Farms

Add outdoor conversation spaces

While it’s unlikely that you or potential buyers will want to sit outside for some teeth-chattering tête-à-tête, setting up some cozy areas for conversation outside can make your home inviting and help buyers envision how outdoor spaces can be utilized. If you have a covered porch, a pair of rustic wicker or Adirondack chairs with some festive cushions and plush throw blankets will do the trick, while in the yard, a simple garden bench will still look charming when covered in snow. In either case, finish your tableau with some festive pine boughs and a lantern or some holiday décor, and you may have to convince people not to sit outside.

Without the lush greenery and long sunny days of spring and summer on your side, it can be trickier to create the “wow factor” that buyers are looking for. But, with a bit of effort and some creativity, your home can dazzle both inside and out.

Thinking of selling during the holiday season? Here are 5 reasons you should!
Wondering if now is the right time to buy a home? Here’s what you need to know.

If you’re planning to sell this winter, a local Purplebricks REALTOR® can help you navigate the market with professional insight and a commitment to the health and safety of your family. Plus, you can save thousands: with our low fixed fee, we saved Canadian sellers an average of $13,500† last year, and buyers receive $2,000 cash back* when they purchase a home with one of our agents! It’s how we’re making real estate better. Call 1-855-999-9740 to learn more. 

†Average savings based on a commission of 5% in Ontario and Manitoba and 7%/3% in Alberta, less a buyer agent commission estimated at 2.5% in Ontario and Manitoba and 3.5%/1.5% in Alberta for clients who were represented by Purplebricks during offers and negotiations, taking into account fees paid to Purplebricks and applicable taxes, from January 1, 2019 to December 31, 2019.