Christmas trees are a centuries-old tradition, but sellers may wonder whether to even have one while their home is on the market through the holidays. And if so, which is better, real or artificial?

First, know that tasteful Christmas decorations are fine in the right amounts, and a little festivity can go a long way in selling the livability of a home. Of course, a Christmas tree is part of that equation. In fact, a tall tree can accentuate the height of a soaring great room or a trendy skinny tree can nicely showcase the “less is more” factor of a smaller space.

Though there are millions who have one opinion over the other about which type of Christmas tree they prefer in general, reason suggests that an artificial tree is best suited for home selling. And if you’re in the camp which says, “It doesn’t feel like Christmas without a real tree,” then remember, it’s (hopefully), just temporary. You can brighten your new home with your wonderful traditions next year.

If you need a little convincing, here are a few issues with real trees while showing your home.

1. Needle drop. Even if it is a fresh, well-watered tree, needles are going to drop, a little and eventually, a lot. When showing a home, the last thing you want to worry about is whether you remembered to vacuum under and around the tree again.

2. Bugs. Real trees are often the vacation rental, so to speak, of dozens of insects who seem to make their debut in the warmth of your home. Strike two.

3. Safety. Real evergreen trees are known to be fire hazards especially as December wears on. You’ll have more peace of mind with an artificial tree if the agent forgot to turn off the tree lights, and you’re not home.

If concern for the environment influences your choice, fake Christmas trees are right there when it comes to a big carbon footprint, score one for real. However, you can purchase or borrow a used artificial tree to use for just a few weeks. Find them at yard sales, thrift stores, or borrow an extra unused tree from a friend.

Decorating that Artificial Tree

Once you have that Christmas tree up, it’s time to assess the special decorating situation when a home is on the market. Here are a few tips.

1. Coordinated colors. Our friends over at HGTV, suggest swapping out the homemade and heirloom ornaments for a coordinated color scheme. Think department store model instead of DIY ornaments and accents.

2. Gifts or no gifts under the tree? Probably best to keep them hidden. No gifts means no crowding up floor space in your living area and no worries about anything “walking away.” Those adorable homemade gifts wrapped in hand-stamped wrapping paper should debut closer to Christmas when the home is not on public display.

3. Working lights. Make sure your tree lights are all lit and in good shape. You might think about using a timer or even invest in LED lights which take less energy and are much cooler, which means they are safer, too.

If you’re looking for help preparing your home for sale, it doesn’t matter the season, Creative Home Stagers will be happy to get your home ready any time of year. Contact us for a quote today.