Expert advice says to leave your home neat, tidy and devoid of personality when selling it so buyers can see themselves in the space. But what if you love Halloween and go all out with the decor? Will that hinder the ability to sell your home? Should you even be showing your home during Halloween?
You don’t have to tuck away your pumpkins and hide your ghosts. Decorating and showing during Halloween could help, says Ashley McInnis, a sales representative with Royal LePage Estate Realty. Why not! If you live in a family friendly area and all of the kids are out, it creates a fun atmosphere and I believe showcases the neighbourhood feeling of the area.”
Nasma Ali, founder, One Group says there are a couple things to consider when showing on Halloween night. “Think about whether you have children who would want to be out trick-or-treating, and not looking at homes,” she says. “Another consideration you would want to keep in mind is that the neighbourhood would be busier on Halloween night, especially areas with many young families, and you may not get a fair take on what the neighbourhood is typically like on a "normal" day.”
If you do decide to show on Halloween, there are several things to keep in mind. Both Ali and McInnis say to keep it festive and not too gory. McInnes likes more of a fall versus an overt Halloween theme. “Hay bails, corn stalks, uncarved pumpkins, fall mums, and fun scarecrows, rather than ghosts and skeletons, essentially keeping any "gore" out of your holiday decor,” she says. “The last thing you want is to turn a potential buyer off or scare their little ones with the gory display you are so proud of.”
Ali says it’s fine to go all out for Halloween on the outside but keep it toned down on the inside. “I think it is always a safer bet to keep home decor more neutral so buyers are able to visualize themselves in the space at all times of the year.” She also says that once the holiday is over, take down all your decorations because they can be a turnoff for some buyers.
Keep in mind that Halloween can be a fun time to go house-hunting and can be a way to meet and connect with your new neighbours.
Ali says that a few years ago she had a buyer who closed on their new home on Halloween.
“They did not move into the property until November and their two children did not realize this, but for years the previous owners went all out and decked out the property every year with a full haunted house theme. It was known in the neighbourhood as the ‘Haunted Mansion’. The new owners’ children were initially upset when they found out, as all their new friends in the neighbourhood crowded around them and asked if they had moved into the haunted house!’” she says.
It worked out well though.
“They realized that their home had neighbourhood celebrity status and the new owners decided to continue the tradition starting their own scary collection of ghostly décor to showcase every Halloween!”