When most people think about spending big bucks in the winter, their minds usually go immediately to the holidays. Between Christmas gifts and New Year’s parties, it’s easy to go through a lot of cash during the cold months of the year. But have you ever considered a hundred thousand dollars or more?
Of course, we’re not suggesting you buy your friends and family extravagant gifts – we’re talking about buying a home. Usually people go shopping for houses during the spring and summer, but if you follow this traditional pattern you may be missing out an opportunity to get a good deal.
Not sure why buying a home in the winter might be a smart move? Take a look at the three reasons below:
1. Less competition
When you’re buying a home, one of the most stressful things that can happen is to get into competition with another buyer over a house you’re both interested in. While it’s not impossible that this would happen in the winter, it’s definitely much less likely.
Since most people don’t start shopping for homes until the late spring, it’s not as common to get into a bidding war in the winter. Plus, you’ll be able to think over your options more carefully because you won’t feel the pressure from other buyers to make a quick decision.
2. More pliable sellers
This factor is strongly tied to the fact that there are fewer buyers out there in the winter; since there aren’t as many people competing for the same houses, it’s easier to negotiate for a lower price.
When home sellers know that won’t be getting many offers, they’re much more likely to cave to buyers’ terms, especially if they need to move right away. This puts buyers in a good position to get a good deal on a home, or at least get other perks, like closing costs or flexible closing dates. If you’re a particularly budget-conscious buyer, shopping in the winter might be just the ticket.
3. Weather-related issues will be easy to see
I bought my first place last June, so I had a good sense of how the home’s cooling system worked. It wasn’t until just recently that I realized that the heating system had a serious issue with its defroster that cost a pretty penny to fix. Had I purchased my home in the winter, it’s much more likely that the home inspector would have caught the problem.
All in all, buying in the winter can reveal a lot of problems with a home that you probably won’t notice in the warmer months of the year. This is helpful because you can either have the homeowner fix them, or move on to another place that wont’ cause you grief.
If you’re thinking of buying a home soon, why wait for the weather to warm up? Start your search now and you may end up getting with the perfect place, and at the perfect price to boot!