Real Estate and the Holidays

by: Mari Takeshita

A buyer wanted to know, “Is it true that the holidays are a good time to buy a home?”

Yes, this could be a very good time to buy for several reasons. Like many businesses, the real estate business slows down during holiday time.

When real estate slows down, mortgages slow down, making it a better time to get a mortgage. That doesn’t mean you will have lax guidelines, rather it means that if there are fewer loans to process, yours can move along faster.

Many sellers tend to avoid the end of the year because of the short days, wintry weather and the belief that buyers are otherwise occupied with the holidays. But those who sell at year-end are often under pressure and highly motivated to cut a deal. There may be tax reasons motivating a seller to sell before the end of the year and that creates a greater opportunity for negotiation.

If you’re a serious buyer, you needn’t be shy about intruding into sellers’ homes at a time normally reserved for family and friends. If a home is for sale, you can assume that the owners want sincerely interested buyers to see it.

Often home prices are lower in December than in other months. Industry reporting services often show home appreciation slows in the fourth quarter, making homes more affordable.

Since it is a busy time of year, you may find that there aren’t many buyers shopping for homes, which is exactly why this may be a good time to house-hunt. Fewer buyers could mean a great opportunity for you to make an offer and negotiate a favorable price.

I’d be more than happy to discuss this further or answer any questions you may have about real estate.