Just because the weather outside is frightful doesn’t mean your home buying experience has to be. Purchasing a home throughout the holidays may seem overwhelming, but there are a few benefits to buying a home in winter that you might not be aware of.
If you’re thinking about purchasing a home this winter, here are some tips to ensure your real estate sale is as stress-free as possible.
The Advantages of Buying a Home in Winter
Home sales fall during the winter period. This is because there are fewer buyers in the market for a new home — which is excellent news if you’re planning to buy! Typically, you have less competing buyers to worry about during the colder months, giving you first dibs on new listings that come to market. There’s also less chance of being caught up in a bidding war and losing your dream home because you didn’t get your offer in quickly enough.
Greater Chance of Bagging a Deal
Supply and demand are both down during the winter months. This means that it’s typically easier to bag real estate at a reduced price. According to the National Association of Realtors, the median sales price of homes last winter around $17,000 less than it was in the spring. People who bought their homes during winter saved a nearly 7% discount compared to those who bought in spring. If that doesn’t make home viewing in the cold worth it, what does?
You Can See How the Home Fares in Winter
Viewing homes in winter enables you to see how they fare in the harsher weather. Although moving into a new home during the warmer months is likely easier than doing it in the colder months, it may hide defects. By viewing a house when the weather is at its worst, you can be more confident that it’s able to withstand the bad weather.
Top Tips for Buying a home in Winter
Decide On Your Budget
Although real estate prices tend to drop a little with the temperatures, you should still budget accordingly. You should also get pre-approved with a lender before you start house hunting. Having a clear idea of what you can afford makes finding the perfect house much easier. Having a pre-approval letter ready also shows the seller that you’re serious and ready to buy.
Negotiate With the Seller
Winter means fewer buyers, so it’s the perfect time to negotiate with sellers. Don’t be afraid to ask the seller to reduce the sales price — especially if issues arise during the inspection period. This is the perfect opportunity to ask for a credit towards your closing costs or a lower sales price.
Imagine the Home During Spring
Buying a home during the winter can be discouraging. Between the harsh weather and gloomy curb appeal, many homes don’t look their best during the dark winter months. It’s essential to look past this when house hunting. If a home has a yard, try to imagine it during the spring and summer when it’s lush and green. Similarly, features such as the AC unit may be challenging to test during the winter, so be sure to have a professional come out and inspect the home fully.
If you’re thinking about buying a home during winter, don’t be discouraged by the weather. As stated above, there are plenty of perks to purchasing a home over the holidays. If you follow the tips above and start your search now, you’re sure to find the house that you want at a great price.