Home Buyers, Home Sellers Benefits of Buying a Home During the Winter Season
Buying During the Winter? Here's What to Expect.
Although home buying hits its peak during the spring and summer months, the winter may actually be a better time to buy and move, especially if you’re a first-time home buyer. Warm weather appeals to open houses, home inspections, and move-ins. If you can tolerate colder weather, check out the following benefits and tips when buying a home during the winter season.
With fewer people buying during the winter, you are less likely to enter a bidding war and more likely to have your offer accepted. Additionally, you may even get a cheaper deal than if you had bought during the summer since sellers will have fewer offers if any at all. Fewer buyers mean lower prices and more room for price negotiation. However, it’s essential to keep in mind that there may be fewer options when buying during the winter. In areas where winter weather is more severe with ice and snow, sellers may wait until warmer temperatures to put their house on the market.
Motivated Sellers and Faster Closing Times
Companies are known to relocate employees during the first and coldest quarter of the year (January – March). Relocation leads to motivated sellers and buyers closing deals quickly. This is a great time to negotiate closing costs and discuss what will be included in the final sale. Sellers who are impatient or those who failed to sell during the fall season may also be eager to sell their home at lower prices. In addition, mortgage brokers tend to have open schedules in the colder months. The quicker the sale, the quicker you can move into your new home.
Real Estate Agents are Available
Real estate agents are busy people, especially during peak seasons, but the colder months significantly decrease sales and showings. This can be beneficial when home searching, as your real estate agent will have more time to accommodate your needs. However, be aware that your real estate agent may be eager to make a sale, so be sure to choose the right home with thorough research.
On move-in day, depending on the severity of the winter season, movers may be more enthusiastic about loading and unloading in cooler temperatures. Some moving companies even offer discounted prices during the winter and more availability.
FHA buyers often have better chances of winning bids during the winter season due to less competition. These loans are backed by the Federal Housing Authority and have fewer requirements than conventional loans. Though conventional loans and cash payments are more appealing sellers may be more amenable to FHA buyers during off-seasons to secure a deal.
A downside to house hunting during the winter is the ability to perform all necessary inspections. For example, a full air conditioning test may not be possible. Colder temperatures could delay or halt outside inspections. Additionally, frozen grounds could make it harder to inspect septic tanks thoroughly.
Always be sure to contact a trustworthy maintenance company to complete necessary inspections.
There are pros and cons to buying a home in the winter, but it’s important to know that cold weather doesn’t indicate a home search hiatus. If you’re planning to sell or buy this winter, contact a HomeHunt professional today to get you started on the right track!