The Benefits of Selling Your Home in the Winter

It’s cold.  It’s windy.  It’s wet.  We all know that winter weather can slow the real estate market down a little bit and that can feel very scary if you need to sell your house.  But never fear!  There are some great benefits to selling your home during the winter months.  In this video, Sumer and Beth discuss five reasons why you need not fear putting your house on the market during the winter.

If you are a reader, here’s a recap of the five reasons why you can list your home with confidence in the winter months.

  1. Home ownership comes with tax deductions.
    Buyers who close by December 31, can deduct mortgage interest, property taxes, points on their loan and interest costs. These deductions are significant, and you can count on there being some motivated buyers out there looking to take advantage of the tax benefits before year’s end.
  2. Only serious buyers house hunt in winter
    During the spring and summer months you might waste a lot of time showing your house to people who are really only out to window shop.  Cold weather tends to keep all those “looky loo’s” home, so that you only spend your time and effort on serious buyers.
  3. Relocation is Year-Round
    Because we live in an area with several large corporations like Walmart, J.B. Hunt, Tyson, as well as all the international vendors that service these companies, NW Arkansas has a constant flow of corporate relocations.  They don’t stop for cold weather, so neither should you!  Again, we are talking about motivated buyers who may only have one or two days to shop for a house, and most will make an offer on one of the houses they saw while on their relocation trip.
  4. More control over timing of your move
    Winter tends to give you a bit more flexibility and time to make your move when you are ready.  The high pressure of the summer and fall influx is off and buyers are usually more than happy to make room for the holidays.
  5. More focused attention from your real estate team
    Because sales do slow down a bit in the winter, you can expect a more relaxed and focused real estate team.  Real estate agents, lenders, title companies, inspectors will be on point, responsive, and ready and anxious to help sell your home.

So never fear!  We’ve got your back!  Give us a call and we will get that house sold for you, no matter the weather!

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Top Two Mistakes Homebuyers Make

Sumer and Beth are back discussing this time the top two mistakes that homebuyers frequently make when shopping for a home.  You can watch the video or read the post below to find out what you can do to make your homebuying experience the best experience possible.

Mistake #1 – Shopping Prematurely

The first mistake many (if not most) buyers make has to do with timing.  When you make the decision to buy a new home, whether for the first time or whether you are going to sell your current home to upgrade to a new home, it’s easy to get over-eager and start doing serious shopping before you have a contract on your current home or before you have even applied for a new loan.  Doing this can waste your time, your agent’s time, and the time of your sellers and often ends in frustration or disappointment.  Giving yourself the time to sell your home first or to secure financing will give you the confidence and security to know that when you do find your dream home, you will be ready to make an offer that will be accepted without contingencies and without drama or frustration.

Mistake #2 – Settling for the First Agent you Meet

The second mistake homebuyers frequently make is settling for the first agent who shows them a house.  Do your homework!  Shop around.  As your friends for referrals and find an agent who has a track record and experience to help you have the smoothest transaction possible.  This is a big decision, and you should put every bit as much care into shopping for a realtor as you would shopping for a lawyer or a doctor or a car.  Ask questions and don’t be afraid to move on if you aren’t feeling comfortable and confident with your realtor.

As always, an ounce of preparation is worth a pound of cure.  Put yourself  in the best position possible before shopping for homes.  Your reward will be a smooth and pleasant experience.

Home Sales Trending Up in Benton County, But Be Ready for the Winter Slowdown

The numbers for September are in!  According to the Northwest Arkansas Board of Realtors, September real estate sales were booming in Benton County.  476 homes were sold, with an average sales price of $202,540, spending an average of 115 days on the market.  That’s an increase over the same month last year.  In September 2014 there were 375 homes sold in Benton County, spending an average of 124 days on the market, with an average sales price of $203,645.  While sales are declining this year in many parts of the country, the housing market is growing in NW Arkansas.

So what can we expect over the next few months?  As always, home sales may take a slight upturn in October now that school is well underway and the weather is at it’s most beautiful in NW Arkansas.  But as November and December bear down with colder weather, we will see a downturn in home sales as well as a slight dip in the average price of homes.  January and February are usually the slowest months in home sales.  If your home closes in those frigid winter months, you are likely to find that your home spent up to a month longer on the market and sold for a bit less than if you sold in the summer months.  Check out the following charts to see how home sales have trended over the last year in Benton County.

Home Sales in Benton County 2014-2015

Average Days on Market in Benton County

Average Home Sales Price in Benton County 2014-2015

If you are thinking of selling your home, think about moving fast before the cold sets in.  But if you can wait until spring, you might be able to pull a bit more cash out of your investment.  If you are buying a home, look forward to lower prices and more time to make your move.  As activity slows, you will have less competition and might be able to avoid some of those nail-biter bidding wars.