The holiday real estate industry is a source of uncertainty for buyers and sellers alike. There are plenty of fun, festive events filling up calendars during this time of year. The season may even have you wondering if holiday commitments and gloomy weather make for a dull real estate market. However, statistics show that this simply isn’t true!
The holiday real estate market provides advantages for both buyers and sellers. Keep reading to discover the little-known reasons why it is a great idea to buy or sell your home during the holidays.
Selling Your Home During the Holidays
Embrace the holiday spirit – selling at this time of year can be really fun! A positive attitude will go a long way to combat any myths you hear about holiday real estate. Stay focused and motivated with these three reasons to sell your home during the holiday season.
1. Serious Buyers
In a way, the holiday season acts as a filter that removes casual home browsers from the market. People that invest their limited time into house hunting between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve have a true intent to purchase a home ASAP. Chances are high that holiday buyers are eager and serious about securing a new home. End-of-year job transfers are also common, putting some buyers on a pressing deadline to find a place to live. Treat all inquiries with a sense of urgency at this time of year!
2. Maximum Availability
The holidays can be filled with countless obligations, but time is a major perk of holiday real estate. Buyers may have the option to use remaining annual leave or holidays to take time off of work without issue. This frees them up to view houses, make a selection, and schedule closing appointments in an efficient manner.
Not everyone knows that this can be a lucrative time of year for real estate, so agents and others professionals involved in the home selling process may have increased availability too. Perhaps you can work with a real estate agent who would be too busy at another time of year or snag a more afforadbale rate. Regardless, your agent is likely to have more flexibility and capacity to quickly help clients and prospective buyers. It is a huge win to know you have the full attention of your agent!
3. Holiday Spirit
Let the holiday spirit motivate you to list your home during the holidays! Holiday marketing is a must when it comes to maximizing the benefits of the season.
To capitalize, you want to invest some time and effort into the curb appeal of your property. Put up classic holiday decorations indoors and outdoors. Create a warm, cozy environment by turning up the heat and lighting the fireplace. Ensure that prospective buyers notice the special seasonal charm of your entire neighborhood. These steps make it easy for buyers to envision themselves in your property and build an emotional connection with it.
Unruly winter weather could put a damper on the holiday magic if you aren’t prepared. Don’t miss these tips to avoid adverse impacts associated with winter weather:
- Keep snow and/or ice clear from sidewalks and driveways
- Upload photos of your home from each season in your online listing
- Install a smart thermostat so no one walks into a cold home
Buying A House During The Holiday Season
Buyers, you are also in luck during the holiday season! Financially, it makes sense to buy a house at this time. You’ve got a real chance at a deal and may find the process to be less stressful once you see the reasons why you should buy.
1. Lower Competition
There are fewer homes for sale during the winter because most people focus on selling in the spring. Fewer homes means low competition and better prices for buyers.
Complete plenty of research on the neighborhood you are eyeing first so you can spot a good price and act quickly once you see something you like. For houses that have been on the market for awhile, you may be able to negotiate an even better deal if the seller wants to complete the sale by the end of the year.
2. Quick Closing Process
Once you’ve got a home picked out, be prepared to move fast – most sellers don’t want the closing to linger past the end of the year. Lenders and real estate agents that are still working during the holiday will also want to wrap up and complete the process as soon as they can. Because of the low inventory of homes, there will be more scheduling availability to get your home inspections done. You’ll be reviewing the final walk through checklist in no time!
3. End of Year Financial Incentives
There is no guarantee, but buyers may be able to score some financial incentives from holiday real estate that is completed before December 31st. Tax benefits are a possibility, as the purchase could qualify buyers to subtract points based on closing, mortgage interest rates, and property taxes. Additional benefits are available if the home is an investment asset.
Traditionally, interest rates are lower around the holidays due to less demand. These days, interest rates are rather unpredictable and you should absolutely be aware of fluctuating rates. Pay close attention so you can obtain a better interest rate on your mortgage. This can drastically change your monthly mortage payment and help you start the new year with some extra money in the bank.