If the weather outside is frightful, that doesn’t mean the real estate market is! If you’ve been scared away from selling your home in the winter by people claiming it’s a bad idea, it’s time to reconsider. In the past three winters, home sales have increased an average of 4.5% during November-January. Although there were less homes on the market, buyers were still buying at an increased rate. There is no doubt that this will continue this winter as well. Selling in the winter actually has it’s own advantages. Experienced real estate agents are aware of the advantages and downfalls of selling in different seasons. Let’s dive into some benefits of selling your home in the winter.
There’s no doubt that the real estate game has changed drastically since the development of instant internet access to property listings. While it is known that spring is the most popular buying season, that doesn’t mean it’s the only buying season. Serious buyers are always looking, no matter the weather. Modern home buyers do most of their home searches online. This is especially true during the winter, when buyers are less likely to brave the winter roads just to drive to the local real estate office. This means that your photos and online listing must be attention-catching and professional, as buyers are probably going through many pages of them.
When spring comes, there’s always a massive spike in the amount of sellers on the market. But in the winter, you practically have the market to yourself, and less competition means more attention for your property. Since 2014, available homes have fallen an average of 15% from November to December – that means 15% LESS competition if you list your home during the winter. Shoppers have fewer properties to choose from, and this means you will sell your house faster and for a better price.
Most people don’t want to move in freezing weather, and that’s a fact. Winter is time to cozy up next to a fire and drink hot cocoa, not hire a moving company. However, if a buyer is trudging through our North Idaho snow to look at your home, they must be serious. Winter buyers are usually working against a deadline, and this makes them more motivated to find a new home and fast. Whether it’s an expiring lease or relocation, a winter buyer is a motivated buyer. You’ll likely have less showings, but the applicants will be more qualified and more serious about buying. This is truly ideal for a seller, as no time is wasted.
Many buyers plan to list their home in the spring because that’s what they are told to do. However, an experienced real estate agent will be able to advise you in any season. Contrary to popular belief, winter is an excellent time to sell. You can get top dollar for your home due to there being less competition, and your buyers will be motivated to complete the process fast. After all, the new homeowners will want to settle in next to their new fireplace as quickly as possible.