Staging at Christmas can present a dilemma. Do we make the property look festive? Will that attract or repel potential purchasers?
For vacant properties, I prefer to stage as usual, and leave Christmas out of the mix. My exception regards curb appeal. I look for something for the urn or planter by the front door – more wintery and natural in theme than Christmas. I look for a healthy fur tree of an appropriate size and add battery-operated white lights. It’s welcoming in the cold weather and not overwhelmingly festive. Boxwood topiary with lights also works. Space permitting, a pair of urns or planters flanking the door looks good. Effective and doesn’t assume that every potential purchaser celebrates Christmas. For the door, a boxwood or grapevine wreath looks polished.
For occupied properties, the challenge is greater, obviously. Once owners have done the obligatory staging cull, restrained holiday décor can be installed. The real estate photos should be taken without seasonal items. I recommend strictly secular pieces – no nativity scenes, advent calendars and angels. (And no mistletoe!) If there are young children, a Christmas tree is fine. It is what it is, so to speak. Prospective purchasers, whether observers of Christmas or not, generally understand its importance to little ones. I recommend keeping the quantity of holiday décor to a minimum, however, and leaving as many clear surfaces as possible. The sooner the purchase agreement is secured, the sooner a few more Christmas pieces can emerge. Until then, have stairwells and railings clear, good lighting, and keep presents packed away securely until Christmas morning. Best not to have “loot” from Santa presenting temptation!