(Buying a) Home for the Holidays

While everyone else is hanging up the mistletoe, or lighting the menorah, why shouldn't you be scooping up all the great deals in real estate during the Holiday "break"?

Realtors don't really ever take breaks, and all the great conditions for buying a home remain the same despite the date on the calendar: Low interest rates, rising inventory of homes on the market, and relatively low house prices. In fact, house deals could be even more plentiful during the holiday season.

All you will be missing is competition - from other people looking to buy (or sell). No bidding wars for you; just nice, quiet walk-throughs of homes trimmed for the holidays, which, granted, may be a tad messier than home showings at other times of the year. (Speaking of which, this realtor blog offers some good tips for showing your home during the hectic holiday season; try to stay on top of the pine needles and wrapping paper.)

Working some house viewings into your holiday schedule just might be your best chance to get your dream home for an affordable price, and certainly you'll get it bought with less pressure/stress. Not only are other home buyers preoccupied with the holidays, the cold weather also can act as a deterrent for trudging out to see homes.

Other reasons to buy property during the holiday season:

  • A seller who's showing their home at this time of year is likely to be more motivated to sell than the average person, hence more flexible with the selling price.
  • As realtors are less busy, you will likely get more personal attention, faster service than during peak buying/selling times. Realtors may also be more likely to take lower offers seriously.
  • Who knows what the interest rates will be in the new year?
  • Who knows how tight banks and other institutions will be with loans next year?
  • Other service providers in the real estate industry - appraisers, home inspectors, title searchers, etc. - are less busy during the holiday season so you could get faster responses there, too.

So, why not put aside the baking and decorating for a few hours; go look at some homes and consider making an offer between now and the end of 2009 ... you won't get this chance again for another whole year.

Have you ever bought, or sold, a home during the holiday season? How did it go for you? Leave your comments below.


1 Comment

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