Should I wait to buy or sell in the spring?
Most people think it is best to wait until the Spring. But, why? Is this accurate? Or have you been misguided by others, and possibly real estate agents?
I can tell you one thing: Real estate agents will slow down during the holiday season and tell their clients “nothing happens during the holidays.”
Let me tell you another thing: They’re wrong!
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#️It’s all in the numbers
Interest rates have just come down after the usual spike that occurs around September.
The Fed’s meet every year in December. With that, usually comes a spike in interest rates. While the spike is not always huge, and may not seem detrimental from 3.99% to, let’s say, 4.05%, wouldn’t you want to keep that additional $20 – $50 a month?
📈Let’s take a look at some stats
From year to year, with the exception of January 2015 to 2016, the homes sold have been fairly stable. Even though 800 or 600 homes might seem low compared to the units sold in the warmer months at over 1,000, the point is: HOMES ARE STILL SELLING!
The holiday season is the most challenging for real estate agents. Not because there isn’t any business, but because agents will slack off. Motivated real estate agents will stick with it and work during the holidays to make sure their sellers or buyers realize their real estate needs. Home sell 365 days out of the year. It just depends on how motivated a seller and a buyer (and agent!) is to make the transaction happen.
Reasons NOT to Wait Until Spring
Buyers are motivated. Buyers are people too – they like the warm, cozy temperatures of their home during those frigid winter months. If buyers are leaving the comfort of their home to shop for homes, they are most likely serious buyers. They may know that during the winter and holiday months is not the most popular time to buy, but they are trying regardless.
Stage your home for the cold months.
Buyers, as well as their real estate agents, will be battling the cold while wandering neighborhoods looking for the perfect house to buy. You can stage your home to take advantage of the need to take shelter and keep warm.
Making a fire in the fireplace (if you have one), comforting smells of baking, warm lighting and more. You can create an inviting and warm welcoming that the prospective buyers won’t forget.
Sellers are convinced that winter months are not the best for getting a home sold. Many will pull their home off the market and wait to re-list it in the Spring. Because of this, there is bound to be less inventory. If you wait until the Spring, you will have WAY more competition.
Low inventory is great for sellers. Basic supply and demand teaches us that most things will sell for more money if there are less available.
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🤸 For Buyers
Low activity during the winter months will result in sellers being way more motivated to sell.
You may get a better deal.
In the slow winter months, sellers are more likely to negotiate on price, closing costs, terms of the sale and more. Because there is, naturally, less buyers shopping, sellers will be more reluctant to take the first offer they get – considering the offer is fair, of course.
Because there are less people shopping for homes, the better the chance your offer will be accepted on your dream home. The low demand will work in your favor.
See how the home works in the harsh weather.
For some, this may be an advantage. For others, maybe not. But think about it: the winter months may be potentially the hardest on a home. You can see how well the home is insulated, and so on. The cold and moisture will test the homes ability to keep its residents warm and safe. Serious problems are more likely to appear and can be useful in negotiating the final price of the home.