Seasonal Advantages for Military Home Buyers

by Dan Lesniak

Arlington County and the Orange Line is home to a large number of active and retired service men and women. With the mobile lifestyle that comes with being in the military, owning a home is one way you can establish roots wherever you are stationed. When it comes to buying a home, timing can make a big difference. There are seasonal swings in real estate markets across the country every year, bringing advantages to buyers and sellers alike, often at different times of the year. But what if, like many a military family, you need to buy a home as soon as possible once you arrive at a new post? Each season has its own pros and cons when it comes to buying a home. If you know what they are, you can take advantage of them, and get the most out of your buying experience.

The two best seasons for home buyers are autumn and winter. Weather plays a big part in this, along with the holiday season. Snow not only makes daily living more of a challenge, it can keep the vast majority of buyers at home, waiting for the thaw. The hectic holidays make for a harder time to set appointments for viewings, inspections, and contract work. Why does all this work to the buyer’s advantage? It comes down to less competition. This means less likelihood of facing a bidding war on a home you want to buy. In the winter and fall, you can also have a better chance at negotiating a deal in your favor with a seller.

In autumn and winter, there will also be fewer homes to choose from. Lighter inventory could make it more difficult to find a home that will meet all your needs. Keep a list of the most important features you need, and narrow it down to the top five, giving you a better chance to find something in the inventory available. If the ground is covered in snow, it will also be harder to identify problems from an inspection, or aspects you may not want. If you can’t see that the yard is more of a mud pit when not covered in snow, you may be in for a surprise come spring. Knowing these are things to consider, you can be better prepared to ask questions which will clarify or alleviate concerns and issues.

Spring and summer are the busiest seasons for real estate. If you are going to buy a home during either of these seasons, you will have more competition. You may get priced out of a home in a bidding war with another buyer. Sellers will also be less likely to negotiate. So how do you take advantage should you be ready to buy in the spring or summer? The best advantage for spring sales is to look early if you can. The start of the season tends to be slower; it takes a few weeks for momentum to build up, so you have a better chance at being first to make an offer. As the selling season goes into summer, there may be more competition, but there will also be greater inventory. If you are looking for specific features within a home, you will have a better chance at matching your needs. Keep your list of features in mind as you search for homes to view, and stick to those properties that seem the best possibilities. This will make best use of your time.

Buying a home is a wonderful way to set down roots and have your own space, especially if you live a mobile life such as our services men and women do. By understanding the pros and cons of seasonal swings in the real estate market, no matter the time of year you buy property, you can be in position to best take advantage of it. This is made easier with the services of a Realtor, someone who is here to help you achieve your dream. When you are ready to buy or sell your home, myself and the Orange Line Living team, are here to provide you with our unique and specialized services, so you can turn your dreams into reality. To learn more about how we can help you, contact us directly at 571-969-7653 or at [email protected]


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