select
|

Winter can be a great season for homebuyers

House hunting during winter can be advantageous for buyers willing to brave the cold weather, as there will most probably be fewer other buyers searching, and much less competition when making an offer on a great home.

“Sellers know that spring and summer are the most popular times to look for a new home and often wait to list their properties then, so it is true that you may have fewer homes to choose from in winter. But you could potentially get a much better deal too, because homeowners who are selling in this season are often more willing to negotiate,” says Christine Appel, owner of the RealNet Durbanville franchise.

“First, their home many not have sold during the previous peak season, and there may be some pressure for them to conclude a sale soon. You should always enquire how long a property has been listed and why the owner is selling before making an offer.

“Second, most sellers will appreciate the fact that anyone who is willing to brave the adverse weather to view their home in winter is probably a pretty serious buyer, and that their offer will be worth considering.

“And finally, time is always money for a seller, and the rainy winter weather we experience in the Western Cape also tends to make it much more difficult to get a home ready for viewings or show days. Thus someone who has decided to sell in winter, for whatever reason, probably doesn’t want to prolong the process, or continue paying holding costs any longer than they have to – especially if their intention is to move somewhere warmer.”

Other winter-buying advantages, she says, include the fact that when viewing a home in “extreme” conditions, you will immediately get to see if there are any leaks in the roof and if the plumbing, insulation and electrical systems all work properly.

“And even if it is somewhat less attractive, a house that turns out to need a few repairs can present you with further opportunities to negotiate a reduced offer. Besides, you’ll avoid the potential problem of buying in summer only to discover that the roof leaks when the rains start the following winter – months after the sale has been concluded.”

Moving is also cheaper in winter, Christine says, because it is a quiet period for removal companies and they tend to discount their prices. You will probably also have more flexibility when it comes to choosing a moving date.

“Meanwhile, it is also worth considering the fact that home loan interest rates in SA are currently on a rising course, and could well be quite a lot higher by next summer. The banks are also steadily tightening up on their qualifying criteria, so buying this winter instead of waiting for summer could actually make all the difference, for many people, between being able to qualify for a home loan this year or not, and losing out on their dreams of home ownership.”


  Comment on this Article

  Please login to post comments

Post to my facebook wall
  
2000
Characters remaining


    Latest Property News
    • 20 Apr 2018
      Whenever changes in the political ecosystem of a traditional property market create uncertainty, smart investors begin to look elsewhere for new opportunities. Property experts at IP Global have analysed the trends and crunched the numbers to find new markets to explore in Europe and the United States.
    • 20 Apr 2018
      Energy and water self-sufficiency are increasingly important factors in home buyers’ choice of property – especially in Cape Town where the extreme drought of the past few years has made municipal supply costly as well as uncertain.
    • 19 Apr 2018
      During the last decade, rampant development has progressively transformed Cape Town’s property landscape with densification being the order of the day, but there are still one or two hidden gems like Scarborough which have retained their original character, offering an inimitable lifestyle and an attractive investment opportunity.
    • 19 Apr 2018
      The rental market is a cut-throat sector of the real estate market that waits for nobody. According to Adrian Goslett, Regional Director and CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa, first-time renters need to be fully prepared before they even start the process of looking for a place to rent in order to avoid the disappointment of losing out on their ideal property.
    • 19 Apr 2018
      Choosing to buy your first home instead of continuing to rent is a big decision that will usually take some time to put into action, but the sooner you can save up a sizeable deposit, the closer you will be to reaching your goal.
    • 18 Apr 2018
      Selling your home is no small task and as you will quickly find out, there are a lot of misconceptions about the process. Gerhard van der Linde, Seeff's MD in Pretoria East lists the top 5 misconceptions when you are selling your home.
    • 18 Apr 2018
      The Cape Town municipality is now installing water-management devices at properties that have been non-compliant with the new level 5 water restrictions and there are talks of fines between R5,000 and R10,000 for households that use too much water.
    • 17 Apr 2018
      The recent interest rate cut has stoked the coals in the first-time buyer’s market. At least for the next two months until the next interest rate announcement, homeowners are guaranteed lower monthly instalments than in the previous quarter. But, is it wise to take out a 100% bond just to enter the property market while interest rates are low?
        
    X
    Subscribe to the MyProperty Newsletter

    Name  
    Last Name  
    Email Address  
    Email Frequency
    select
    X
    Share this Page

       
    For Sale Property
    Rental Property
    More Options
    About
    Connect with us
    FEEDBACK