Is a new home on your New Year’s resolution list? You don’t need to wait until the spring thaw to begin your search. Here are five reasons why beginning your home search now may give you some distinct advantages.
- Sellers with properties for sale in the winter are often more motivated. Homes go on the market at any time for many reasons, but some reasons have more compelling deadlines. There could be a job transfer or a change in family situation. Or the seller may have even moved already and be more willing to negotiate.
- You’ll likely have less competition from other buyers. Less competition also means less likelihood of finding yourself in a multiple offer situation if you find a home you really love. And while there may be fewer homes on the market in early winter, you only need one that’s right for you.
- Interest rates are slowly beginning to rise. Thirty-year fixed rates are now above four percent after holding below that for most of the past year. However, rates are still historically low. So it makes sense to lock in the lowest rate possible and get preapproved for a mortgage as you start your new home search.
- You’ll have a jump start on your home search process. If you start looking now, you’ll know the market in the neighborhoods you’re considering and have had time to determine which community is really the best for you. You’ll learn what your “must haves” are in a home and on which features you can be more flexible. If your search continues into the spring market, you’ll be better prepared to know quickly and confidently which home fits your needs and make an offer.
- Agents, lenders and inspectors may be more available. With less competition from other buyers, real estate service providers may be more available to give you the most attention.
Now is really a great time to start your home search!
by Carolyn Staven, for Coldwell Banker’s DreamBlue Blog