While many people think of spring as the prime season for house hunting, the winter months can offer a good selection with less competition from other buyers, plus the opportunity to settle in before the warm weather arrives. Here are a few reasons why searching for a home in the winter season makes sense.
Less competition. During the spring and summer, more homes are on the market and more buyers are competing for those homes. The opposite is true during the winter months: Fewer buyers are house hunting, reducing the chances that you’ll have to battle multiple offers. The slower winter season also allows you to take the time to check out more properties, comparing prices and features to make an informed decision.
Sellers are more motivated to negotiate. With fewer would-be buyers, sellers receive less attention and fewer offers, making them more willing to make a deal. If the seller has been trying to sell their home for months or has a new job and needs the money for another transaction, they may be even more motivated to negotiate on the price, closing costs and terms of the sale.
Lenders are less busy. Mortgage lenders aren’t as busy during the slower months, so they have more time to give you individualized attention, possibly resulting in expedited approvals and quicker closings.
Gain insights into how energy-efficient a house is. Viewing homes in cold weather enables you to determine the heating system’s efficiency as well as how well-insulated the home is. You’ll be able to find out if some parts of the house are drafty and whether the owner uses space heaters in some rooms. Looking at homes in the winter gives you the chance to easily discover these deficiencies, which might not be apparent during the warmer seasons.
Finally, one important point to keep in mind. While owners may be more willing to negotiate during the winter and you might view a discount as a given, avoid making a low-ball offer that might insult the seller and doom your chances of buying the home of your dreams. An experienced Coldwell Banker® independent agent has the resources and tools to effectively guide you through the entire process.
If you are considering looking for your dream home this winter, get started by contacting an agent affiliated with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage or visiting ColdwellBankerHomes.com to view all properties for sale in your area.