Although winter in Northern Arizona is usually the slowest time of the year for real estate sales, some buyers feel that now is a good time to buy because sellers are more inclined to be motivated and willing to negotiate. This mindset may well be true, as some sellers who have been unsuccessful this past summer and fall may be ready to move on with their lives.

During the summer of 2017 sellers were in the driver’s seat, but as autumn rolled around sales slowed to some degree, prices have stabilized and sellers have become more inclined to negotiate. In December 2016 there were approximately 650 total properties on the market in the Northern Arizona Multiple Listing Service (MLS); at the end of November 2017 there are more than 750. With this increase and competition between sellers, it may well be a good time for buyers to make their move.

One advantage that buyers could have is that there may be less competition with other buyers who are waiting until spring to begin their search. An advantage to sellers is that if someone is out looking at homes in winter weather, they are probably serious buyers. These advantages, along with an increase in inventory over last year, just might work to a buyer’s advantage.

On the down side, searching for a home in a snowstorm can be a less than pleasant experience and sellers may not be keen on having prospective buyers coming into their homes during the holidays. Sometimes when a house and yard are covered with snow, it is hard to visualize how it may look when the weather warms.

However, finding a suitable home on the internet is commonplace among most buyers and they can narrow their search by viewing homes online. Viewing the home in person can be a verification of the buyer’s interest in a home they found online and this reduces the amount of time that someone may physically spend looking at homes.

You may want to consider the advantages and disadvantages of winter buying as you evaluate your own situation. If you start looking, you may just find the home of your dreams at a price you can afford.

Mary Monday is an Associate Broker at RE/MAX Peak Properties. She can be contacted at (928) 214-7325 or Mary@MaryMonday.com.

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