For many sellers, conventional wisdom says selling a home in the winter season is a bad idea, however, while it might not be as ideal as warmer months for the sake of convenience and comfort, for some, winter may actually the best time to sell.
Less Competition There aren’t as many listings on the market with which to compete during winter. Nationwide, there is about 20% less inventory during the colder season. Winter Sellers may be at an advantage while most others are prepping and waiting for spring because there are fewer homes with which to compete.
Serious Buyers Cold weather filters out those buyers who aren’t really serious, don’t know what they want or really aren’t sure. They’re just “looking”.
Stronger Pricing A serious Buyer will boost pricing. With less inventory, and fewer choices for buyers during the winter months, if a home is competitively priced and shows well, winter buyers will be less likely to try and negotiate the price down. Since they have fewer options, they are less likely to risk losing out on a good home at a fair price.
Tax Planning Some buyers may be eager to establish residency and need to move quickly to take advantage of tax incentives. Nevada tax perks for example, can justify paying more for a home when a buyer is up against the clock to make their move.
January is the Biggest Transfer Month More corporate moves happen during the month of January than at any other month of the year. Corporate transferees, who need to buy a house now, may not wait until spring.
Reinvestment Opportunities By selling a home during the winter, a Seller may have the opportunity of selecting from a larger inventory on the buy side, if they intend to acquire another property in the spring or summer. While Winter may be the best time to garner a higher price in the sale of a home, a Seller can turn around and take advantage of the more selection and pricing pressure to get a great deal a few months down the road.
Nuisance Showings Warmer months bring more “short notice” showings which are inconvenient to the seller. Sellers will endure many more showings in the Spring and Summer that don’t bring in any offers, which can become a burden if the home is occupied.
Home Shows Better Some homes just have that warm cozy feel, maybe it’s the style of decorating, the holiday lights, or perhaps the architecture but these houses inspire buyers more during the winter months. Big fireplaces invite buyers to imagine sitting in front of them on a cold winter night. This sort of inspiration doesn’t happen during the Summer months.
Low Mortgage Rates Seasonal fluctuations and long term anticipation of rising rates offer good buying opportunities now. There’s a high proportion of cash sales in the Tahoe area, but high net worth Buyers may prefer to use home equity for other investments and low borrowing rates make second home purchases very attractive.
Positive Press Driving Sales With prices exceeding pre-recession highs and fast moving inventory, buyers are acting on a scarcity mentality and quickly jumping on new opportunities.
Marketing Advantage As there are fewer listings on the market in Winter, there are also fewer properties being advertised. Your listing will garner more exposure in media and print outlets, as fewer properties are taking up ad space.
National Data Supports Strong Winter Sales A nationwide survey done by industry professionals, analyzed homes listed over the span of two years and found that those listed in winter have a 9 percentage point greater likelihood of selling, sell a week faster, and sell for 1.2 percentage points more relative to list price than homes listed in any other season.
Although a Seller may have specific reasons to wait until Spring to list, there can be many advantages not to put off the listing until the warmer months. Many buyers will understand that landscaping and lawns won’t be visible in winter, but snow covered grounds and an abundance of evergreens brighten up homes and offer some great photography opportunities for marketing. Many Sellers may see the advantage of targeting the winter Buyers, who bring a new opportunity in Tahoe’s prime season.
Nine Lake Tahoe Real Estate Office Locations:
Incline Village | South Lake Tahoe | Olympic Valley | Tahoe City Lakeside | Tahoe City Gallery | The Rock, Truckee | Downtown Truckee | Zephyr Cove | The Summit Mall, Reno