Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Oh the Weather Outside is Frightful--Ten Reasons Why NOW is a GREAT Time to Buy a Minnesota Home!

A fresh blanket of snow covers the landscape across the Twin Cities from Oakdale to Blaine and Ham Lake to White Bear Lake. There is a chill in the air...who am I kidding, the weather is biting cold this year. But 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 like they often have to when the weather is warm. They will be have to spend more time scouring the MLS to find the perfect home for their buyers!

Reason 6—Amazingly Low Mortgage Rates. Though rates have ticked up a bit from the extremely low 4% rate that were available last month, at 4.5 % rates are still at all time record lows. These rates cannot continue forever. A low interest rate translates to being able to afford a higher priced home and/or a lower payment!

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—Check that Fireplace. It's hard to determine if that fireplace will be perfect for toasting chestnuts when the temperatures are in the upper 90's on a July summer day. But now is the perfect time to see if that fireplace is operational. A cracked flue can costs thousands if overlooked in the warm weather so buying during the winter is a plus when considering a home with a wood burning fireplace!

Reason 2—Amazing Inventory. Whether you are looking for a starter townhome, a single family home, a private country acreage, 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 100's 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!

Copyright 2010 Teri Eckholm