As we are about to bring in the New Year, families across the country will be deciding if this is the year that they will sell their current house and move into their dream home. Many will decide that it is smarter to wait until the spring “buyer’s market” to list their house. In the past, that might have made sense. However, this winter is not like recent years.
The recent jump in mortgage rates has forced buyers off the fence and into the market, resulting in incredibly strong demand RIGHT NOW!! At the same time, inventory levels of homes for sale have dropped dramatically as compared to this time last year.
Here is a chart showing the decrease in inventory levels by category:
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Buying a home may be the American dream, but it’s also a monumental task: You have to clean up your credit, apply for a mortgage, scrape together a down payment, and then move all your worldly possessions in after you close on the deal.
A landlord can raise your rent whenever a lease expires—and often by as much as he pleases. But as a homeowner, you can lock in a predictable mortgage payment for as long as 30 years.
The many expenses of owning a home—like property taxes and accounting costs—are tax-deductible. The largest deduction is generally the interest you pay on your mortgage.
It’s cheaper. The monthly outlay of owning a home is much less than paying rent in the majority of markets in the U.S., buying is the more affordable choice in 58% of U.S. markets. Plus, mortgage rates are currently low, making it an economically wise choice to purchase a home sooner than later.
Owning a house you plan to stay in for a while also allows you to have an impact on your community with your taxes benefiting local infrastructure, schools, and organizations.
With a rental, you run the risk of getting kicked out at the end of your lease. With a home, you can live there indefinitely. And isn’t there something comforting in knowing there’s a place where you’ll always have a roof over your head?
A recent study of more than 7 million home sales over the past four years revealed that the season in which a home is listed may be able to shed some light on the likelihood that the home will sell for more than asking price, as well as how quickly the sale will close.
It’s no surprise that listing a home for sale during the spring saw the largest return, as the spring is traditionally the busiest month for real estate. What is surprising, though, is that listing during the winter came in second!
“Among spring listings, 18.7 percent of homes fetched above asking, with winter listings not far behind at 17.5 percent. While 48.0 percent of homes listed in spring sold within 30 days, 46.2 percent of homes in winter did the same.”
The study goes on to say that:
“Buyers [in the winter] often need to move, so they’re much less likely to make a lowball offer and they’ll often want to close quickly — two things that can make the sale much smoother.”
If you are debating listing your home for sale within the next 6 months, keep in mind that the spring is when most other homeowners will decide to list their homes as well. Listing your home this winter will ensure that you have the best exposure to the serious buyers who are out looking now!
The study used the astronomical seasons to determine which season the listing date fell into (Winter: Dec. 21 – Mar. 20; Spring: Mar. 21 – June 20; Summer: June 21 – Sept 21; Autumn: Sept 21 – Dec. 20).