While there is a case to be made for homeselling in each of the four seasons, Winter is one of the most powerful times sellers can place their home on the market and for ten very good reasons.
- Price & Market Time. Statistics show homes sell faster and for more money in Winter. One way to understand this phenomenon is by considering a motorist in bad weather with a flat tire. That motorist has an urgent need and is less likely to haggle, or even seriously consider less expensive options, provided his immediate need is met. Winter homebuyers can experience this same urgency and this helps to explain the premium that homes can command during what some consider the real estate ‘off season.’ Another way to look at the Winter market dynamic is if you want to buy snowshoes in July, expect to pay more, since availability is typically lower.
- High Quality Buyers. Because home touring can be less convenient, there tend to be fewer ‘Looky-Loos’ during the Winter. This means you’ll have fewer buyers tracking dirt into your home and more time for yourself, given less energy spent preparing your home for ‘Tire-Kickers.’
- Less Seller Competition. Let’s face facts: It’s convenient to sell in the Spring and Summer, especially in Oregon. The weather is usually better, flowers are blooming and with plenty of homebuyers looking, it’s a ‘target-rich environment.’ Yet while it’s easier and more convenient to sell in sunny weather, this convenience can come with the cost of increased competition from other sellers. Conversely, Winter homesellers can expect fewer like-minded sellers competing for buyers. Just like the successful contrarian investor who sells when everyone else is not, avoiding a ‘herd mentality’ can pay off.
- Higher Buyer Motivation. Is your idea of a fun time getting into a car on drizzly nights to go look at houses? Probably not…unless you just got a job transfer. Or a nice raise. Or you received an inheritance and want to get out of your tiny apartment. It’s helpful to know that corporate relocations are especially common in the first quarter. Plus family changes can occur anytime and estates are settled year around.
- The Hunt for Red December-Get a ‘Jump’ on the New Year’ s Competition. The best time to get your property on the market might be when everyone else isn’t. Placing your home for sale in Winter gives you access to hyper-motivated buyers who have made homebuying a New Year’s resolution. Then when these hungry homebuyers begin their ‘hunt,’ your house will have be a prime ‘target.’ So if your home is market ready and available to tour prior to the New Year, expect to tap into this highly focused ‘pent up demand.’
- Your Home Looks Inviting During the Holidays. Who doesn’t enjoy the happy glow of a Christmas tree or other holiday decorations, along with the pleasant smell of fresh-baked pumpkin pie, cinnamon buns, or a vanilla candle? Homes often look their most inviting during the holidays. And given the pleasant, even emotional attachment so many have to this time of year, expect some homebuyers to fully embrace the holiday theme of ‘peace on earth and good will toward men.’ As a result, such positive feelings can spill over into the home selling process and make it easier.
- Your Lawn & Landscaping is Virtually a Non-Issue. Forget to mow your lawn? No worries. Buyers won’t even notice if they tour your property and it’s covered in snow, raining hard, or after sundown. Buyer landscaping expectations can be quite reasonable during the Winter months in Oregon.
- When Your Home Sells, You May Buy With Less Competition. Few homesellers stop to consider that given good timing with their sale, their own future home purchase may also benefit from such unique seasonality. So depending on a variety of factors in the market where and when you buy, homesellers can sometimes take advantage of lower Winter activity levels to successfully negotiate with a motivated seller. This is because some sellers place their home on the market during Winter not for convenience or desire to maximize their selling price, but from genuine need. Such highly-motivated homesellers could therefore provide Winter homesellers with a good buying opportunity with their next purchase.
- Fewer people relocate in Winter, so this means you’re likely to have an easier time booking a mover.
Competition for moving companies can be challenging during the real estate ‘high season.’ As a result, expect less difficulty scheduling your moving company when you sell in Winter.
- You Can Dictate Which Days & Times Are Available for Showings. As a homeseller, you have control over tour times and dates for your home and that includes during Winter months. Given holiday-related gatherings and events, buyers are more likely to understand their need to schedule their tour of your property. Your Realtor can help by specifying days and times your home is most available for showings. For example, you could have your house available for tours on Saturdays from 2 to 5pm, weekday mornings after 9:00am, or between 5 and 8pm weekday evenings.
Thinking about selling your Oregon property this Winter? Call Certified Realty at (800) 637-1950 for a FREE consultation!