Cool weather and brighter colors aren’t the only things that change with the seasons. According to several detailed data studies, fall is also one of the best times to buy a home. Several factors converge to make fall one of the best times to buy a home in almost any market at a discount.
Higher Inventories and Fewer Buyers
The law of supply and demand is still the key factor in home prices. During the fall months inventories of homes for sale are up while the number of buyers looking to buy are down. This means that there is less competition for a home and sellers are more likely to accept an initial offer, rather than hope for a price war.
Length of Time on the Market
Related to supply and demand is the length of time a home has been on the market. Most homes are put on the market in the spring and summer. This also corresponds to when many buyers are out shopping. As summer comes to a close, fewer homes are put on the market and fewer buyers are showing up at open houses.
This means that homes still for sale in the fall have been there for several months and the owners may be getting nervous. The longer a home is on the market, the more flexible sellers tend to become on price. One reason you are more likely to buy a home at a discount in the fall than most of the rest of the year is because the sellers are more likely to be anxious.
Time to See More Homes
Because the warm weather months tend to see a bump in the listing of houses on the market and a surge of interest from buyers, real estate agents and brokers are often stretched thin during these months. In competitive markets it can be tough for buyers to schedule enough time to see more than one or two homes. Sometimes, a house sells before a prospective buyer even has the chance to walk through it.
Because many buyers have either already bought a house or have given up until after the first of the year, fall is a great chance for buyers still in the market to see more homes. With less competition, homebuyers in the fall have the advantage of seeing several homes before making an offer.
Taxes and Timing
When it comes to taxes, everything is about timing. Purchasing a home in the fall months allows most people enough time to take advantage of some tax rebates, credits, and deductions before the calendar rolls over to the next tax year.
Another consideration is that in most places fall is a great time to move into a new home. The weather is still mild and there is still time to get major projects finished before the arrival of winter and the holidays.
If you are on the fence about buying a house before the end of the year, now is the time to start looking. The market may not look this good for buyers again until next fall.
Decker Bullock Sotheby’s International Realty