The Benefits of Home Hunting in the Winter

Although it might be cold outside, winter can be a great time to find a hot deal on a home.

Most people begin their house hunt in spring or summer for a variety of reasons: school is out, there is more time to look for a new house, and the warmer weather better accommodates for looking and moving. However...

Are you aware that winter can bring lower prices, a better chance of negotiating, fewer bidding wars, and even a faster home-buying process?

While there usually are fewer homes for sale in cold-climate states, from late fall through winter, there are good homes to be found and lots of reasons you might be able to negotiate the right deal.

Sellers might be more motivated. There could be a reason a house hits the market in winter. The seller might be moving out of state, or have other reasons they need to sell quickly. This means more flexibility on the final selling price, or other terms such as negotiating appliances, repairs, or closing costs.

You might get more attention. With fewer people looking at homes in cold weather, you can expect the undivided attention of your real estate agent.

Cutting the clutter … and the competition. It’s likely you’ll find fewer homes to look at, but that can work to your advantage by helping you focus your search. And with fewer buyers in the winter you can take a bit more time to think things through, and maybe even avoid a bidding war on the home you finally choose.

See things in a different light. One drawback of house-hunting in winter is that you’ll probably see the yard at its worst – dead grass, no flowers, and bare trees. Look at it this way: If you love it then, just imagine how great it will look come spring! Looking at homes when it’s cold outside gives you a chance to see how well the furnace heats the house and how things like windows, and insulation keep the cold out.

Closing could be faster. With fewer homes being sold in the winter, you might find that the process of making the offer, to moving into your new home could go quickly. Approvals could move faster and moving companies probably have more open schedules.

Keep in mind that you can help speed any home-buying process by knowing what you can afford, being ready with a good down payment, and getting pre-approved for a loan.

Falling temperatures could be the perfect reason to heat up your hunt for the right home!