The Holidays can be stressful with hosting guests and buying gifts and everything else the season entails. Add trying to sell your home on top of that, and it can get a little overwhelming. So we put together some tips, tricks, and advice to help you deck the halls without hurting your sale.


While your life-size Nativity scene may be a time-honoured tradition, it can put off potential buyers and creates business and clutter. Try to keep decorations neutral and impersonal. You want your buyers to be able to imagine themselves in this space. It is important at any time of the year to remove family photos and other personal objects to allow potential buyers to inhabit the space in their imaginations. Keep the décor wintery without being obnoxious.


Keep it elegant and minimal. Go for simple string lights instead of inflatable snowmen, a classic wreath as opposed to full-size reindeer on the roof, etc. If no one else on your street really decorates for the holidays, downsize even more. If your neighbourhood goes all out, you can go a little crazier, but you don’t want to drive away potential buyers with the flash and glitz of too much décor.

Skip the Tree

This may be hard, but once you’ve staged your home, a Christmas tree can really throw off the flow and feel of a room. If you have a huge tree, it can make space feel cramped; a small or poorly made fake tree can look depressing or cheap. Unless you’re showing off your three-story vaulted ceiling with a towering conifer, pass on the tree in favour of selling.

Make it Cozy

This is the most wonderful time of the year, or so I’ve heard. Play up the cold outside and the holiday spirit. Stir up a roaring fire, play soft classical music, make the house smell like apples and cinnamon, bake your viewers some holiday treats. What you should tone down in visible decoration, feel free to exaggerate with hospitality and holiday cheer.

Compliment your Color Palette

Try to decorate to your home’s strengths. If the palette is cool, avoid clashing reds and golds and go for a more wintery scene with whites and silvers. If the palette is warm, go as cozy as you like with evergreen and candlelight.

Focus on Curb Appeal

Winter strips the grass of colour and the trees of leaves, so do what you can to make the exterior of your home as appealing as possible. Rake any winter debris, shovel the sidewalk and driveway, touch up the paint, and clean out the gutters. Try to make the best of the season!

Stay Safe

Don’t put presents under the tree or stacked around, even if it looks nice. Lock them in the trunk of a car where nosy house hunters won’t stumble across them, and opportunistic thieves can’t get them.

Enjoy the season!

This is a lovely time of year to spend with family and friends, so don’t get too wrapped up in selling your home and forget to enjoy it. Talk to your realtor about whether keeping your home on the market during the holidays is right for you, and if not, unlist it until the new year comes around and get a fresh start. Do what’s best for you!