Four reasons why you should house hunt in the winter!
The snow is falling, the breeze is cold, and all you want to do is stay cozy inside. But if you’re thinking about buy a new or your first house, winter is a perfect time to start the hunt! Here are four reasons why you should bundle up, and head out and look for your new home:
Reason #1: There’s less competition.
The cold makes everyone want to stay inside, and for this reason there is less competition when you are looking for a home. Because there are less buyers in the market it means you’ll have a smaller chance of falling into a bidding war. This also means it’s a perfect time to look if you’re a first-time home buyer.
Reason #2: Sellers are motivated.
For the same reason there are less buyers, there are likely to be less sellers. But this means that those who are selling, are motivated.
Reason #3: Nature’s true test.
Looking for a house in the winter means that you get to see how the house performs at the coldest time of the year. Is the basement dry? Does the furnace manage to keep the house warm? Are the windows and doors drafty? Now you’ll be able to see these firsthand.
Reason #4: Spring is just around the corner.
With spring close by it means a wave of buyers isn’t that far behind. Beat the rush. It also means that even if you buy a house now, your closing date is likely to be in the spring, or close to it, so you won’t be moving in the thick of winter.
If you’re ready to start your winter house hunt, here is what you should look out for:
Ask for off season photos.
As the winter can cover the backyard and other items with snow, ask for off-season photos so you can see what things look like in the spring, summer and fall. It will help fill in the whole picture of the property and bring out elements that may not be as noticeable or polished in the winter.
Document the conditions of things you can’t see or inspect & ask questions.
Create a list of things that you are unable to see under the snow, or because of the weather and ask questions about these items. You can also ask your realtor to put conditions in your offer to verify the state of these items.
Keep a flexible schedule.
The winter months can be a little tricky when it comes to scheduling appointments due to weather, vacations and more. Keeping a flexible schedule will definitely help you squeeze in appointments when they are possible.
Don’t be afraid to submit a below asking offer.
If the house has been on the market for a while, there is a possibility that the seller may take an offer below asking. Ensure your do your research and consult your realtor for advice on how much you should offer. Your realtor will look at competing homes in the area, what’s sold recently and how many days the house has been on the market to determine the appropriate amount to offer.
Don’t lose hope.
If you don’t find what you are looking for, don’t lose hope. As spring approaches, more houses will go on the market, so continue your search until you find the right house for you.
So bundle up and get out there! My scarf and mitts are ready to help you with your search!
Looking to buy your first home? Check out my First Time Home Buyers’ Guide!
NEW HOME. NEW ADVENTURE.