Winter Home Buying

3 Reasons to buy a home in the winter

3 Reasons to buy a home in the winter

When the temperature drops, that is when the Real Estate market typically cools off as well.  Less people are looking to sell in the winter months for multiple reasons. In fact, between 2013 and 2015 in the Columbus, Ohio area, there were 56% less properties listed in the month of December than the month of August. This is not unusual by any means.

Why the dry supply?
Overall, the Columbus area has a very low housing inventory. Even during the peak of the summer in 2016, supply was low. Folks were gobbling up homes for greater than list price and getting into bidding wars. This is typical in an environment when you have more people wanting to buy a home than homes available for sale. In the winter, however, the inventory dries up even more.  Why? People have office parties, presents to buy, dinners to cook and more. This is in addition to cold weather being a deterrent.

Cedar Falls in the Hocking Hills

Here are the 3 reasons you may want to consider buying in the winter

1.) Less Competition from other buyers
In the winter time, frustration over the competitive buyers market coupled with busy holiday schedules cause some house hunters to take a break. Many began their search in the spring or summer and simply couldn’t find what they were looking for. They didn’t stop browsing, they just stopped actively going to view homes regularly with their Realtor.

2.) Better Prices
Winter house hunting also means many of the homes on the market have been listed for 30 days or more. Many homes have reduced in price or perhaps have some very motivated sellers. In an article from Forbes in December of 2015 they reported that housing prices drop over .5% during the winter.

Tip: Do a search for homes that have been on the market for 60 days or more. If you see a home you like, see if you can get your Realtor to get some intel.

Aside from homes that didn’t sell, some of the homes listed in the winter are listed because of a life event. Someone may lose their job or be transferred to another market. This also could be a indicator they are motivated and need to sell their home to mitigate their relocation costs.

3.) You Move in the Spring
We all know that when you go into contract on a house you close on it and have the keys your hands within 14 days, right? Ok, no, that was a horrible, awful joke that is simply not a reality in Real Estate. Real Estate closings are scheduled out typically three to six weeks. This doesn’t count any time during the offering process. That alone could take a week or more. So the argument “Who wants to move in the winter” is nullified.  You will be moving the middle of March to the end of April if you were to go into contract in January or February.

So put on your layers and get out there, you just might make your spring one where you are settling into a new home that you purchased for a great price!

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