February 14, 2022

Is selling your property in winter a bad idea?

If you think the real estate market is only active in the spring, think again! Each season has its own pros and cons. So, if you make the most of the season, you will be able to sell during any month of the year. 

Advantages of selling in winter

Rather than keeping buyers away, the cold season attracts those who are serious about their search and who are ready to pay more for the property they want. This is the perfect time to convince motivated buyers!

One major advantage is that with fewer properties for sale. As a result, your property will appear more attractive to buyers since the market is less saturated.[1]

And since the number of real estate advertisements is less during this time of the year, it’s a safe bet that your real estate broker will not be as busy and can focus more on the sale of your house or condo. It also means that the buying process could go faster.[2]

Despite the slowdown in sales from December to March[3] , there is data that shows that January and February are both among the top five months of the year for properties selling above their listing price[4] : a strong financial argument!

Disadvantages of the cold season

In general, fewer properties are offered for sale during the winter, fewer people are looking for a new home and fewer sales are made.[5] Supply and demand being one of the basic principles in the real estate industry, your home could remain on the market longer than you expect.[6]

Since there are fewer buyers out looking for a property, bidding wars as less likely to occur.[7] While this is a plus for the buyer, it is not necessarily so for the seller. This could result in more difficult negotiations, such as over the selling price or possession date.

Furthermore, if you need to quickly sell your house in winter, perhaps due to a separation or if you are relocating for a new job, the final selling price may be lower than the asking price.

Tips for selling in winter

When snow covers the ground, it becomes difficult for a buyer to assess the exterior aspects of the property. What can you do? Present a warm and inviting property in perfect condition. It would be advisable to have your heating system checked, as well as the roof insulation, doors and windows, etc. Then, before putting your property up for sale, do all the necessary maintenance or repair work.[8]

Clear the snow from entrances, stairs, and balconies to create a good first impression and facilitate access for visitors. Having some photos of your home’s exterior in summer can make it easier for prospective buyers to visualize themselves living there.

Home staging draws attention to your home’s best features. In fact, by highlighting its strengths, your property can sell for as much as 20% more.[9]

Remember, a real estate broker is your greatest ally for getting the best value for your home… in all seasons!

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