I often get asked, "is it a good time to buy a house in the Winter?" So I wanted to shed some light on some reasons why I think it is a GREAT time to buy in the winter season, or what we call "winter" here in Austin. Real estate wisdom tells us that spring and summer are the prime seasons for house hunting and moving and that people are more likely to get out and shop when the weather is nice. Yet there are some very logical and compelling reasons for going shopping for a house and moving in the winter as well.
As we know, moving and real estate often go hand in hand and though we'd like to dictate when we move and when we buy a house, very often other circumstances can emerge and force us to sell, buy and move anytime of year.
But having to buy a house in the winter is not the worst thing that can happen. In fact, I have put together some advantages that show how you could benefit from house hunting in the winter.
Fewer Buyers to Compete With
The most obvious advantage 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. So for the investor looking to find a good deal in the housing market, the winter can be prime time.
Lower Inventory But Less Competition
In the Austin market, winter usually means a lower inventory with less homes on the market. While this is often the case, it's possible to find the right home and with fewer people looking, you'll have less competition.
Prices Are Lower
When you have fewer buyers in the market, supply exceeds demand. This usually results in prices being lower than during the hot or peak season where you can find many more buyers shopping for homes.
Sellers are Motivated
All the low activity in the winter will result in sellers being far more motivated to sell. I know that the slow winter months are when sellers are more willing to negotiate, whether it is on selling price, closing costs, closing date or any terms of the sale including what household appliances and items are included in the sale.
What Are the Seller's Circumstances?
There are the circumstances hinted at above when sellers are forced to sell during the winter. Perhaps a job offer has dictated a winter move, or the seller may have personal issues that are dictating his/her actions - financial issues, divorce, etc. Again, this may work to the buyer's advantage as the seller will be very motivated and need to sell quick.
Fewer Chances That There Will Be Multiple Offers on the House You Want
Another reason that winter can be a buyer's market for real estate is that the fewer number of buyers competing for homes means that the chances of there being multiple offers on a single property are greatly reduced. This again translates to buyers having the upper hand over sellers in the negotiations.
So put aside all those misconceptions, CALL ME and let's get out there and house hunt. Remember that in Austin it's always a great time to invest in real estate.
If you or anyone you know is looking to buy, sell or invest in real estate in Austin please send them my way!
"WHEN YOU THINK OF REAL ESTATE, THINK OR ME!"