The days may be getting shorter, but the list of home-shopping benefits is getting longer.
Real estate markets ebb and flow, just like the seasons. The spring market blooms right along with the flowers, but the fall market often dwindles with the leaves — and this slower pace could be good for buyers.
If you’re in the market for a home, here are five reasons why fall can be a great time to buy.
1. Old inventory may mean deals
Sellers tend to put their homes on the market in the spring, often listing their homes too high right out of the gate. This could result in price reductions throughout the spring and summer months.
These sellers have fewer chances to capture buyers after Labor Day. By October, you are likely to find desperate sellers and prices below a home’s market value.
2. Fewer buyers are competing
Families who want to be in a new home by the beginning of the school season are no longer shopping at this point. That translates into less competition and more opportunities for buyers.
You’ll likely notice fewer buyers at open houses, which could signal a great opportunity to make an offer.
3. Sellers want to close by the end of the year
While a home is where an owner lives and makes memories, it is also an investment — one with tax consequences.
A home seller may want to take advantage of a gain or loss during this tax year, so you might find homeowners looking to make deals so they can close before December 31.
Ask why the seller is selling, and look for listings that offer incentives to close before the end of the year.
4. The holidays motivate sellers
As the holidays approach, sellers are eager to close so they can move on to planning their parties and events.
If a home has not sold by November, the seller is likely motivated to be done with the disruptions caused by listing a home for sale.
5. Harsher weather shows more flaws
The dreary fall and winter months tend to reveal flaws, making them a great time to see a home’s true colors.
It’s better to see the home’s flaws before making the offer, instead of being surprised months after you close. In fact, the best time to do a property inspection is in the rain and snow, because any major issues are more likely to be exposed.
Top photo from Shutterstock.
Originally published October 2015.