House Selling 101

The Pros and Cons of Selling a House in the Winter

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Often people think spring is the best season for selling a house or even summer, but actually, you can sell a house any time of year. Selling your home during the winter may have its drawbacks, but it also has its advantages.

Pros of Selling

Pro #1: Serious Buyers

The large flow of buyer traffic in the spring and summer consists of many window shoppers – people who are getting a feel for the home market, browsing home types, and decorating ideas. In winter, buyers tend to be more serious. If they make appointments to view the home during what is perhaps the busiest time of year, when daylight hours are short, that shows promise.

Pro #2: Less Competition

With so many sellers thinking spring and summer are the best seasons to list a home, you have less competition during the winter holidays. Less competition means you get more showings and interest from serious buyers.

Pro #3: Enjoy a Quick Closing

Buyers who shop in November and December are highly motivated to make a deal and close before the New Year so they can enjoy tax benefits, including deductions from their mortgage interest and property taxes. Other times, if a buyer is relocating, they want to buy fast to get the most out of their corporate relocation package.

Cons of Selling

Con #1: Less Than Ideal Weather

Cold, wet, maybe even icy or lots of snow, winter has the weather that bribes folks to stay indoors. Buyers are less eager to drive out to look at homes in winter. Road conditions can be hazardous, and after Daylight Savings Time, you lose two to three hours for showing your home. Also, your winter-stricken yard loses its curb appeal with bare trees, less greenery, and a blanket of white.

Con #2: Buyers Have Other Financial Obligations

Winter holidays are a busy and expensive time of year. First comes Thanksgiving, and then it is Christmas or Hanukkah, or Kwanzaa. Buyers may have their money tied up in other things, like holiday gifts, food, and travel.

Con #3: Showings Take Effort

You have to keep your home neat and tidy during showings, and this can become more taxing during the winter holidays. You have to be light on holiday decorations so as not to overwhelm or clutter the living spaces. If family is visiting, you have to constantly clean up after them and try to get them out of the house for showings. You might be skittish about leaving out presents and constantly hide them in closets during showings and pull them back out after buyers leave.

If you want to sell your home fast for a cash offer and enjoy the winter holidays, consider selling to an investor. Investors do not mind cold weather, holiday decorations, or crowded homes. You can enjoy a quick closing and get back to what really matters during the holidays.

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