It’s raining. And not just any rain. It’s that cold rain that bites into you and you don’t want to go outside. But if you’re in the market for a new home, this may be the ideal time to bundle up and hit the pavement.
Do Housing Prices Drop in Winter?
This “old wives tale” of the housing market actually has statistical support. According to a local 2013 study, houses in St. Louis County sold for 91.8% of the asking price in December and January, and for 95.1% of the asking price in July. Nationally, a 21-year study by London School of Economics professors found that there is a seasonal decline in housing prices between 5% and 7% from summer months to winter. Statistically, homes cost less and are sold for less in the winter.
Is Winter the Best Time to Buy?
Most people buy houses in the summer for a number of reasons. Often, there is a greater volume of homes listed in the warmer months.
But the winter months may have some hidden gems. Some homes are over-priced in summer and don’t sell. A savvy buyer can get more bang for their buck with a great house that the summer buyers passed over.
Some sellers can’t wait for spring. Perhaps an owner has to move for a job or they can no longer afford their home. These sellers will list in winter looking for a quick sale. A great home can be scooped up at fire sale prices from a desperate seller.
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Now is the time for the intelligent buyer to start looking for that new home. The prices are right, the market is in your favor, and your ideal home is out there waiting for you.