In the Disney smash hit Frozen 2, Elsa has the magical ability to manipulate ice and snow. You might not have that same magical ability, but that doesn’t mean you can’t control your own destiny when it comes purchasing the home of your dreams during winter. Winter actually offers multiple advantages that make the frozen time of the year the best time to buy a new house.
These tips from Mortgage 1 will help.
Get started on your winter home buying opportunities today. Apply with the Mortgage 1 online application. Get started now!
The most obvious plus of buying and moving in winter is exactly because real estate wisdom says to shop spring and summer. As a result of this popular piece of real estate advice, there will be fewer buyers in competition during the winter months. It’s simple economics—the low demand will work in your favor. Statistics from the National Association of Realtors shows a 46% reduction in sales from November through February, as compared to the summer months. This means, as a buyer, you have the upper hand.
Data from the Federal Reserve, Census Bureau and Zillow (table below) shows that January and February provide the best bang for your buck home purchasing wise. January has the lowest median sales price at closing, with February not far behind. Homes in January and February have also been on the market the longest. This makes sellers anxious to take whatever deals come their way, even if they are below asking price.
Because there is a slowdown in all phases of the home buying process during the winter, home sales close faster. Realtors have fewer clients in the winter, meaning they can devote more attention to you. Sellers, since their homes have been languishing on the market longer, are eager to move quickly. Lenders and title companies, too, have lighter workloads and can process loans and closings faster.
There are fewer buyers looking for homes during the winter. This means sellers are less likely to get multiple offers. This results in several advantages. It is less likely the house you make an offer on will be bid up. It is more likely your offer will be accepted. It is more likely your offer will not be counter offered. And it is more likely that the seller will make a quick decision.
The lower number of sellers and buyers during this time means less work for real estate agents. This means you will get a lot more attention from your real estate agent. Not only that, the slow down in business means your realtor will be more motivated to find the exact house.
Shopping for houses in the winter means you get to see them up close during the coldest months of the year. You get to experience first-hand how well insulated a home is, whether it gets ice build-up on the roof, whether the windows and doors are drafty, and how well the heating system works.
This isn’t necessarily a winter time factor, but mortgage rates remain near record lows in this winter of 2020. Freddie Mac said last week that the average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage remained at a historically low 3.74%, compared to 4.55% a year ago. Most economists expect rates to remain low through 2020. Combined with the other factors that make winter home buying a smart decision, lower rates help seal the deal.
Turn winter into your home buying advantage. Start with a pre-approval from Mortgage 1. Our online application makes it easy. Get started today!