Buying a home in winter seems counterintuitive, especially with our Canadian winters! Who wants to be outside examining a potential purchase when the snow is falling and the wind is blowing?! While it seems like an odd choice, these reasons are exactly why buying a property is a great idea in the winter months.
Many benefits to real estate shopping in winter
When buying property, whether for personal use or as an investment property, no doubt you want to get it for the best price possible. While most buyers will wait for slightly warmer weather to head out and hunt for the perfect place, winter really is a great time to go house hunting. So, slip on those winter boots, don your winter toque and give us a call to see what gems we have available!
Lower Real Estate Purchase Prices
Since more people are going out to look for a house in the spring or summer rates tend to rise then, too. As with most industries, demand will dictate the selling price. So, while you might have more selection in the summer, you’ll no doubt pay more for whatever property you settle on.
Homeowners are more motivated to sell
It’s common knowledge that listing prices increase in the spring, so if you’ve found a homeowner that’s listed their home in the winter, they are likely to be motivated to sell. If they weren’t in a rush to sell, they’d wait to list until spring or summer when they can raise the listing price. This can help when it comes to negotiating a better price since the seller is probably needing the sale to happen quickly.
There’s less offers coming in
During the slow sales season that winter brings there are likely less offers coming in for you to compete with. This gives you a bit more negotiating power, since the sellers aren’t fielding multiple offers and looking to pick the best one.
You can see how it handles bad weather
Winter is not only a cold a stressful time for us, it is also stressful for a house. Being able to see how a house responds to the terrible weather that winter can bring can help you spot issues you might not notice in the spring or summer. If a house needs new windows, a new roof or new insulation, you can use these upgrades to your advantage when negotiating your offer.
Movers can be cheaper to book
With less people buying in the winter, there’s also less people moving. This can mean that moving companies aren’t as busy as they are in the spring or summer. If you can be flexible on your moving day to protect against weather delays, it’s possible that you can negotiate a lower rate from a moving company.
Did you know? Buying pre-construction real estate in winter can also be lucrative. Developers depend on strong launches so any winter launch is likely unintended and so even better pre-build deals can be had. Whether it’s a better price, terms or unit location, Team Patty can help!
Tips for real estate shopping in the winter
Aside from wearing your warm winter gear, there are a few things to keep in mind when house shopping in the winter:
- Make sure you ask for a full inspection. If the home has been empty, the water may be turned off and the icy weather may hide any roofing concerns
- Request a maintenance history so you can see when major improvements have been done
- Ask for photos of the outside of the home in a warmer climate. Winter can make the home look dreary, so seeing how it looks with green grass, trees and flowers can help you envision what it will look like in the future.
- Winter is a great time to give the driveway a good judging… You’ll have to clear it throughout the winter if you buy the home!
Winter real estate shopping can save you thousands!
During the winter months the number of listings on the market can be lower, but the market is a buyer-driven one. Since most homeowners wouldn’t choose to list their home for sale during a season that accounts for such a low percentage of property sales, they are likely very motivated to sell. This can help you, as the buyer, to negotiate a great price and get moved into your new home before the market even starts to rise. Though you might have less opportunity to lock down your dream home since you’re working with limited selection, if you’re sticking to a budget, house shopping in the winter can help you get more bang for your buck!