Sunday, December 2, 2007

Sleigh Bells Ring are You Listening?—Winter is a Great Time to BUY a Home!

A fresh blanket of snow covers the landscape across the Twin Cities from North St. Paul to East Bethel and Ham Lake to Scandia. Winter is not a time to hide from the elements and wait until spring to make a home buying decision! Although making a move in a Minnesota winter’s snow and ice is not ideal, the timing could not be more perfect to buy a home and get a GREAT DEAL!

Here are the Top Ten Reasons to Buy a Home THIS Winter!
Reason 10—Holiday Décor. Visiting homes this time of year will really put you in the holiday spirit. Many homeowners use this opportunity to deck the halls with hopes that there will be a purchase agreement in their Christmas stocking!

Reason 9—Check Window Efficiency. No that frost on the window is not a holiday decoration! Subzero temperatures really put windows to the test. Some windows will fog between the glass panes, others will ice up on the interior and then there are those that stay crystal clear in the cold. This energy efficiency test can only be done when the temperature is extreme outside.

Reason 8—Low Traffic/Less Competition. While most Minnesotans are shopping at the Mall of America for gifts or attending “A Christmas Carol” at the Guthrie Theater, savvy home buyers are visiting homes with their Realtor!

Reason 7—Realtors have Tons of Time. Most Realtors are not juggling several clients and will be able to spend more time scouring the MLS to find the perfect home for their buyers!

Reason 6—Tightened 2008 Mortgage Guidelines. In the first quarter of 2008, most borrowers who have good credit, but have FICO scores below 680, will be required to pay more points at closing or incur a higher interest rate. The amount that a borrower could be forced to pay, even if they've never been late on a payment, could be as much as 2.00% in points or an interest rate that's 1.00% higher than the going rate.

Reason 5—Check the Heating System. Whether the home is heated with a forced air furnace or a hot water boiler, checking out the heating system in the summer is hard to do. On a cold Minnesota evening, a furnace problem is very obvious!

Reason 4—Builders Discounts. New Construction developments hoping to clear inventory before the end of the year will often slash prices. Buyers ready to buy non-contingent are in the best position for a deal…Especially when they are accompanied by their agent to assist with the negotiations!

Reason 3—Low Interest Rates. Just after Thanksgiving, interest rates dropped to the lowest point in 25 months! If you don’t buy now, you could miss a great opportunity to cash in on the lowest rates since October 2005.

Reason 2—Amazing Inventory. Whether you are looking for a starter town home, a single family home, a private country estate, a McMansion or a lakeshore paradise, there are probably a slew of properties for you to select from. A search of lakeshore in Anoka, Chisago and Washington Counties alone, yields nearly 100 available homes. Now that is a great selection!

And, drumroll please, The Number 1 Reason for Buying in the Winter—Motivated Sellers. Homes that stay on the market in December and January in the Twin Cities are homes that need to be SOLD! If they are motivated enough to suffer through a Christmas Eve showing, they probably are willing to negotiate on the price as well!

If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional Realtor, give me a call or visit my website for a FREE Relocation Packet. I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District! Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.

Copyright 2007