Should you buy a home during the holidays?
Once Thanksgiving is over, the real estate world typically starts to wind down for the holidays and doesn’t usually reawaken until after New Year’s. But potential home buyers who are prepared to close in today’s competitive market may want to keep house hunting while everyone else is waiting for spring.
- REALTORS® especially recommend that serious home buyers continue shopping if they have repeatedly lost out on deals because of a limited and continually decreasing supply of homes. Buying intensity typically cools down at the start of fall through early January, which could increase the odds for those with more patience.
- Would-be buyers historically have bowed out during the winter season because they are overwhelmed by holiday spending and commitments. There’s also the aversion of moving in the middle of a school year. Consumer interest typically picks back up again in the New Year and peaks in the spring.
- Certain buyers may be well-served to buy during the winter because of sellers who must move for various reasons including a job change or transfer or the possible sun setting of the Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act, which lets certain home sellers get tax relief on mortgage debt forgiven by lenders. The possible expiration has pushed home sellers to list and short sell their homes before year’s end.
There is one big consideration about trying to buy or sale a home before year’s end. Unless it is a cash deal, it is virtually impossible due to the backlog of all the other buyers and sellers who are trying to do so. Here in the Napa Valley, it is taking a minimum of 35 days from entering into contract till closing.