We get this question all the time! Given that the current market STRONGLY favours sellers (if you haven’t already noticed), we believe buyers should use anything (ethical and legal of course 😉 ) to get a better deal. From the get-go we’ll tell you that springtime is not the best time to buy a home and will not be advocated as such in this article. Why? BECAUSE EVERYONE WANTS TO BUY IN THE SPRING! This creates the following issue: Housing is a product. There is only so much of it available at any given time. High demand for a product with low supply will never result in lower prices (take when a new iPhone is announced as an example). So buying at a time when demand is through the roof (pun intended) may not be the best strategy if you’re looking the get the best house for the best price. Now, can you think of a time when buyer demand would be at its lowest? You guessed it – December. In fact, we’ve seen some great buys during December that we don’t normally see in other months due to a HUGE drop in buyer activity. We ourselves have bought several times on boxing day for much less than we would have in the spring market.
Take a look at the image below. Our office is able to track buyer activity through the number of property showings booked. It well depicts exactly what were talking about. The more showings booked means there are more buyers shopping and the opposite is also true. What catches your eye? Is it the nearly 12,000 showings booked in April and May or is it the 3,800 booked for December? Even without going to University for Mathematics those numbers are fairly easy to figure out. December experienced an 80% drop in buyer activity when compared to the spring market!
Does the above information sound good to you? Statistically that means for every 10 buyers only 2 are actively shopping. In a super hot market with price wars happening everywhere this is great news for buyers. So why don’t more people take advantage of this lull? The Holidays! Everyone is so distracted and consumed with other festivities that house hunting often gets thrown on the back burner. This brings me to a second reason why December is the best time of the year to buy. If a home owner is selling over the holidays they are motivated! Most sellers know that springtime is historically the best time to sell their home, so if they’re selling in December when everything is chaotic and super busy with Holiday stuff you can be pretty sure they have some good motivation.
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