If you are considering buying a home in the near future, but balking at the idea of moving in the dead of winter, here are a few things for you to consider. The price of homes tends to drop in the winter months, and the competition among bidders nearly disappears. If you are willing to put up with a little chilly weather while you move, you may be able to save a significant amount of money and get a faster turnaround on your closing.
A quick look at housing market indexes reveals that housing prices drop drastically in the winter months, regardless of location. There are a number of factors that affect this trend, but the biggest fact is that people simply do not like moving in the winter. Most people wait until the end of the school year, with warmer weather and far less stress when thinking about listing their house. As a result, the lower demand for housing means that sellers are forced to lower their prices and accept bids that would be out of question during the busy summer months.
One of the biggest differences between buying a home in the summer and the winter is that you are competing with two different groups of people. In the summer, buyers are generally families who are looking for a new permanent residence. By contrast, a lot of the home sales that happen in the winter are by investors who are looking to cash in on the lowered prices. As a result, you will be less likely to get involved in a lengthy bidding war because investors will not directly benefit from running up the price on any house if there are other options available to them. Sellers are more likely to consider any reasonable offer as long as it gets the house sold.
Negotiating PowerAgain, with less competition and fewer homes on the market, your power as a buyer increases. Seeing a home in the winter will give you a better idea of how it handles the cold and dreary months. You will quickly notice roof leaks, window and insulation issues, and anything else that will be cause for concern when you move in. This could be the best chance you have to negotiate with the seller for any special repairs or contingencies that need to meet before you close the deal.
The last piece of the puzzle when you're buying a home is securing your financing. As prices drop and buying slows down, lenders are more likely to have special financing rates available. In addition, you will have a better chance of the house you choose appraising closer to the value of your loan, which keeps banks happy. Keep an eye on rates as deep winter is approaching and try to snag a loan before the banks gear up for the spring time rush.
While buying a home in the winter may sound stressful, the reality is that it can be a great way to save thousands and get into a home quickly. There may be a limited number of houses on the market throughout the winter months, but there is less competition among buyers so you have more time to shop around and find something you like. In addition, if you do find a house to buy in the winter, you can plan on moving in the early spring and avoid the nasty weather. For more information on buying a house in the winter, or to get matched with a real estate agent to begin looking for a home, contact us at Mary Roy and Team today!