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Selling a property in December can be an incredibly busy and challenging time. There are numerous events, parties, and holiday gatherings that people will be attending, which means more traffic to your home and more potential buyers looking to purchase your property. However, with enough preparation and strategy, you can make the process as smooth as possible.
It’s incredibly important that sellers measure their expectations no matter what type of property they are selling. Getting a good price for your home has to do with many factors, and the time of year is only one of them. The worst time to sell a house is when it doesn’t fit into the other demands of your life.
What to know about selling a house in the winter
Selling a house in the winter can be tricky, but there are a few things you need to keep in mind. First of all, make sure you have your home staged and ready to go. This will help potential buyers see how much work needs to be done, and it will also set the tone for the negotiation process.
Second, remember that many people don’t want to buy homes during the coldest months of the year. Make sure you show your property in as good condition as possible – any broken windows or moldy walls could spoil an otherwise promising sale.
Third, expect slower sales rates during the winter season – this is due partially to limited availability and partly because people are more likely to stay put when it’s cold outside (and they may not think twice about spending extra money on heating bills). But don’t give up hope! A little persistence and market knowledge can go a long way toward landing that perfect homebuyer at your door…
How the time of year affects different kinds of property sales
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There are a number of factors that can affect the amount of property sales during different times of the year. Some of these include economic conditions, holidays, and weather patterns.
Here is a closer look at how each one affects property sales:
- Economic conditions play an important role in determining whether or not people are willing to buy or sell property. When the economy is strong, more people may be able to afford to purchase homes or invest in stocks, which can lead to increased demand for properties on the market. Conversely, when the economy is weak, fewer people may be able to afford property and there may be less interest in buying or selling Properties.
- Holidays also have an impact on real estate prices. The majority of homebuying takes place between January and March (the peak season), so housing markets tend to become more active around major holidays like Christmas and New Year’s Eve. However, this activity tends to decrease as we head into summertime because many families are already established by then and aren’t looking for new homes as much.
- Weather patterns can also significantly affect real estate prices. This is particularly true in places like Florida and California, where seasonal patters can have a huge impact.
How to know if December is the right time for you to sell
You’ll have to look at more than just big market trends in order to decide if December is the right time for you to sell your home either in the traditional way or in a cash sale. This process is all about what you need and how you can get it in the real estate market.
Winter housing inventory is lower
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People who are out to buy a house in the winter tend to have more urgency about their house searching than others. Winter buyers tend to be serious buyers
Because inventory is so low, winter buyers have to make choices faster and get on with things. There isn’t time for them to go back and forth about whether this home has as much curb appeal as they’d like or whether that home needs too many renovations – they just need to get in somewhere.
End-of-year tax breaks for home sellers
Getting a tax break can be a compelling reason to sell your home in December. Sliding in before the end of the fiscal year can make a big difference, depending on all of the factors involved in your particular home and the area where you live.
Note that things vary state by state and locality by locality. Federal taxes are a serious factor, and the best time to sell to avoid them is before the year rolls around in January. Capital gain taxes can also be affected by the time of year, and there are some creative ways to legally avoid capital gains tax. Property taxes can also be affected by the time of year you sell your home.
Tax differences in selling in December vs. selling in January
There are several end-of-year tax breaks available to home sellers, depending on their situation. Here are some of the most common:
1. The Home Mortgage Interest Deduction
This is a special deduction that lets homeowners deduct interest paid on mortgages from their taxable income.
2. The Property Tax Deduction
This allows homeowners to reduce the amount of taxes they pay by subtracting the value of property taxes from their assessed value.
3. The State and Local Sales Taxes Holiday
During certain holidays in December (usually during Thanksgiving and Christmas), many states allow taxpayers to exclude up to $10,000 worth of purchases from their taxable income.
Job transfers that start in winter
The winter months tend to be slower in terms of home sales than the summer, as families aren’t trying to get settled in before the new school year. Conventional wisdom says that the best time of year to sell a house is not Christmas, but job transfers are a factor here.
It’s not uncommon for job transfers to start on January 1, which means that December is the best month to move for many families. There’s less competition for homes in the winter months, which means that those people who have had job transfers that do start in January have an advantage.
Targeting your home for sale before the end of the year specifically to buyers who have had job transfers to your area can help you to level up your home selling prospects, whether you’re in Florida or New York.
Understanding the house-selling cycle
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It’s important to understand the yearly house-selling cycle to make the most informed decisions about when and how to sell your home.
The typical sales process takes around six months, but there are always exceptions. Knowing when you’re likely to list your home for sale and determining a price point that will maximize its chances of being sold is crucial if you want top results.
Here are two factors that will help you determine when it’s time to sell:
- The amount of time that has passed since the last housing market correction (in other words, since prices have decreased). This tends not to be determinable with accuracy more than one or two years into future cycles. Corrections generally occur within four year intervals on average.
- Recent trends in property values and rental rates; this information can be found through online databases such as Zillow or Trulia, or by speaking with a real estate agent who specializes in local markets.
Real estate is always hotter in the summer – June, July, August, and September. Ths reason for this has to do with the school cycle. People tend to want to move when the kids are out of school. Moving during the school year is not the ideal time for most families. This way, everyone can be settled when things start going again. It’s also unpleasant to move in the harsher weather of October, November, and then on into February and March.
Spring and summer are the hottest times for the housing market, but they are by no means the only time to sell a house.
Selling a house in December is all about knowing your property
If you want to sell your house in December, then you’ll want to work hard to get the best price by being a smart negotiator and understanding the value of your property. Listing a home any time of year is possible, and real estate listing isn’t the only factor here.
Think about your asking price and how that might change before closing. It’s a good idea to look at the local market and how financing options are impacted by cycles in the job market. the holiday season can be a significant factor as well, which is one reason many people assert that this is not the best time for things like open houses.
Getting a fair market value doesn’t have to wait until the winter months are past! If you need to sell your house before the end of the year for any reason, it’s worth exploring all of your options. December is not a bad time to sell a house.