When it gets cold out, people have a tendency to shy away from the real estate market. With harsher weather conditions in Utah, winter can be a slow time for real estate buying and selling. That’s just part of the ebb and flow of things. This season can also provide a unique opportunity for some buyers. As recently discussed in the Deseret news by Salt Lake Board of Realtors President, Adam Kirkham, there has been an increase in how many homes are being listed at the end of the year. This increase in homes in Utah’s market has given potential buyers more to choose from, and more potential to negotiate for a better price. Anytime supply goes up and demand goes down, that’s a good thing for buyers.
There’s a reason why the day after Christmas is reported as the day homes buyers save the most during the year. The holidays mark the slowest time of the year for selling, and that gives buyers more wiggle room for negotiating a better price with sellers who want to close as soon as possible. While on average the savings may not be as big as on Boxing Day heading in to the spring, the general slowdown is consistent as being more of a buyer’s market.
Consider a few ways a local real estate agent can help you find the best deals during this winter season. First, he or she can help you determine which listings have been on the market the longest. When a listing is stagnated, this can mean the price is too high for the market. Even if the price is fair but not moving due to the slowdown, it can give buyers an opportunity to test how eager a seller is to sell by putting in a lower offer.
An agent can also assist you in determining the most beneficial timing for putting in an offer. With the slow-moving market, you have more time to make a decision on which home to buy. While the competition of buyers is not as big a factor, it’s good to stay aware of which homes may have the most interest. Your agent can connect with the listing agent and determine the current interest for any property and help you figure out how much time you have to decide on whether or not to put in an offer. Being able to weigh the options between multiple homes that you like without the pressure to put in an offer immediately can help you make better decisions.
When you are ready to buy, an agent can help you connect with loan specialists based on your needs. You may want to know how long different loan options generally take, from a traditional home loan to various government subsidized loans. During the winter, there are less loans and so the speed of how quickly things get processed is generally quicker.
As always, it’s good to stay up on market trends before investing in real estate. Working with local real estate professionals will give you the best edge when buying or selling in any market conditions. If you are ready to buy, winter might just provide the best buying conditions for your situation.