I often hear the question “When is the best time to buy a home?”. The real answer to that is “When you need one!”. But seriously, there are benefits to buying a home at different times of the year. Whether it’s spring, summer, winter, or fall, there is an advantage to all.
Let’s start with Winter because that’s where are at now. Usually if someone lists their home for sale in the winter, there is a good reason for it. It’s usually someone that has to relocate for a job or personal reason, meaning they are highly motivated to sell. In addition, you will have less competition in the Buyer’s market, as there are fewer buyers in the winter. As a Seller, it’s a good time to list since the available buyers have a smaller inventory to choose from and they are generally very motivated.
In the spring, the market changes. There are more readily available buyers. Many buyers come into the market because they have an additional year of taxes that may qualify them for more purchasing power. Also, many sellers choose to list their homes for sale in the spring so they can make their transition during the Summer when kids are out of school. With more listings and more buyers, both sides have more competition in the market, but they also have more choices and options.
When summer hits, you still have buyers that are motivated. Often, they have made several bids on homes and lost out to other buyers that were more aggressive in their offers. After going through that disappointment several times, these buyers become more realistic and have a better understanding of the market that they are in. If they are families with children, getting settled before the kids start school is first priority, therefore, they are motivated to make something work.
When Fall rolls around, the buyers that are left are serious. The market with families has softened, and there is less competition again. Also, since it is a slower time of year, when you need an inspector, appraiser, title company, etc. there are more options as you most likely will not have to wait long for an appointment. Sellers can also take advantage of the market slowing down. Even though there are less buyers that are actively searching, the ones that remain are motivated, and since there is usually less inventory, it is a good position to be in as a seller.