Secrets to Selling or Buying a Home in Winter

“Don’t list your house in winter, you’ll never sell it!”

“Trying to buy a house and move during winter is crazy, wait until spring.”

If you’ve ever heard these comments—or others like them—you’re not alone. And while it’s true that spring and summer are peak real estate seasons, that doesn’t mean you can’t find buyers in the winter months if you’re trying to sell your home, and it doesn’t mean you won’t be able to find some good deals as a home buyer.

Selling a house in winter

For those selling their home in winter, the obstacles to overcome include bad weather keeping prospective buyers away and making the property dreary. Barren trees, dead grass, and slush puddles can rob even the prettiest home of its curb appeal! Your goal should be to focus on enticing buyers through the door and creating a cozy atmosphere that makes them want to stay.

Here are some ideas for highlighting what makes your home cozy, hinting at what makes it great in summer weather, and creating a compelling emotional experience for prospective buyers.

Because buyers, especially in winter, do most of their home searches online, the quality of your listing photos and any video tours needs to be top notch. Use high-quality photos with good lighting, including exterior photos during warmer seasons.

Buying a house in winter

Homebuyers in winter will have fewer options to choose from as listings taper off from November to February; however, they will have a strong bargaining position with those properties on the market.

One of the factors contributing to that strong bargaining position is that properties for sale in winter usually can’t wait long on the market to be sold. Their owners must move soon. And, because most people don’t want to move in the middle of winter with the weather and holidays to work around, buyers are in shorter supply than homes for sale.

When supply (homes for sale) is greater than demand (buyers looking for homes), the deals are better for buyers! If you do make a home purchase before year-end, you can take advantage of tax benefits, like writing off some of the expenses of the home purchase.

No matter if you’re a buyer or seller this winter, you can take advantage of your unique position to find the best deal for you.

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