The real estate market is open 365 days a year – yes, even on holidays – but there are cyclical trends to the marketplace. Some of those ups and downs are based on mortgage interest rates and housing availability, but some are based on season.
Next to spring, fall is the busiest season for home buying and selling. Autumn offers certain benefits to home buyers, including year-end tax breaks, pleasant weather conditions for moving and a wide selection of homes for sale. Read on to learn the advantages of buying in the fall.
Year-End Tax Breaks
Come September and October, people start to think about what year-end tax breaks they might be eligible for. Fortunately for home buyers, owning a home can yield great dividends in tax returns. For example, both mortgage interest and property taxes are deductible from gross income. Furthermore, if you have prepaid some interest before the due date of your first payment, and if you close your loan before the year’s end, that interest can also be deducted.
Getting Ahead of Mother Nature
Buying a house before the deep freeze of winter sets in is very appealing to most home buyers. No one wants to worry about icy roads, snowstorms or blackout conditions on moving day, nor is it fun to move in sweltering summer heat.
School Year and Holidays
By wintertime, kids have settled into school, established friendships and become involved in extracurricular activities. Moving in summer would be least disruptive to your children’s schooling or social calendar, but autumn is next best. Also, by moving in fall, you’ll be settled snugly into your new home before Thanksgiving and the winter holidays.
More Home Choices
While home demand is not as keen in fall as it is in spring, it’s still high, so competition can be high, too. Fall buyers and sellers tend to be motivated to move, unlike the window-shoppers who sometimes come out in spring.
You may experience pressure to buy, due to the quick turnaround of houses on the market, but you’ll also benefit from the broad selection of homes available. In fact, between September and December, you may be able to visit several open houses in a single day, and listings will be updated frequently. Therefore, to make sure you don’t miss out on your dream house, it’s a good idea to regularly check listings and check in with your Realtor.
Fall Home-Buying Tips
Given the home-buying competition and the short, pre-holiday timetable in autumn, you may be tempted to place a bid that is out of your price range, for fear of losing the home. Before you make an offer, know what kind of house you need and what you can realistically afford, and stick to your budget. You may want to explore prequalifying for a loan so that you’ll be ready to act when you find the home you want. And as always, whatever season you buy in, buy at the best time for you and your family, and hold out for the right house – there are always more homes to see and to choose among.
Deena Weinberg originally wrote this article on realtor.com. To see the original, click here.