As the weather heats up, would-be home buyers head out to see if they can find hot deals. Buying a new home in summer can be tempting. The weather is warmer, and it’s more pleasant to move during the summer than it is during the winter.
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Before you move forward with your house-hunting plans, though, it’s important to weigh the options. Does it really make sense for you to buy a home during the summer? Here are some of the pros and cons:
Advantages to Buying a Home During the Summer
In general, mortgage rates are often a little lower during the summer. There are a number of market factors that go into interest rates, but in general you are likely to find cheaper loans for homes. This can save you money in the long run if you can lock in a rate before rates move higher.
Another advantage is that you can often find good deals when buying a new home in summer. If a home has been on the market for more than 60 days because it didn’t sell in the spring, you might be able to negotiate a lower rate. Many sellers are willing to offer some incentives during the summer because they feel like they need to cut a deal before pulling the listing before fall and winter.
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There are lifestyle advantages to buying a new home in summer as well. The weather is better for moving since you don’t have to worry about all the inconveniences that come with moving in winter. If you have children, the transition might also be a little easier. You can move during the school break, and start fresh with a new year in the fall. It always requires an adjustment when you move with your kids, but the difficulty can be reduced by a summer move that doesn’t result in trying to fit in part way through the school year.
Disadvantages to Buying a New Home in Summer
Buying in summer isn’t always the best plan, however. Even though summer isn’t as busy as the spring for real estate, it is still fairly brisk when it comes to sales. As a result, you might still have to fight for the good deals, and it might be difficult to find exactly what you’re looking for at a price you want. While there are some good deals out there, you have to look a little harder for them during the summer.
Another difficulty is that many moving companies charge prices seasonally. If you buy during the summer, it might be more expensive to move. Additionally, you need to be aware of availability issues with movers. You might need to schedule out weeks in advance to find a company that is able to handle your request during the summer. If you need to move quickly, you might be out of luck — or it will cost you more to make it happen.
Finally, if you want to work with a real estate professional, you might have a hard time finding someone who’s available. During a time of relatively high demand, the best agents are likely already busy. You might have to settle for whatever help you can get. This can mean delays in finding a home, as well as in arranging financing and closing documents, since lending professionals are also busy during the summer.
Tradeoffs Whenever You Buy a New Home
There are always tradeoffs when you are house hunting. If you look for a home in spring and summer, you might have more options, but you might not be able to find the really good deals. You can also find a bargain if you look hard enough, even during the summer, but prices are generally higher during the summer than they are during the winter. The downside to waiting until winter when pricing is more favorable is that there are usually fewer homes on the market so you don’t have as many options.
Carefully consider what’s most important to you and the tradeoffs you are willing to make before you begin house hunting during the summer.