3 Things to Look for When Buying a Home in the Winter

As if buying a home wasn’t complicated enough, winter’s harsh weather and low temperatures make for a challenge you won’t find during any other season. If you’re in the market for a new home this holiday season, you can make it easy on yourself if you know what to look for. For the best all-around wintertime home-buying experience, add the following items to your checklist. You’re looking for:


1)    A functional heating system. If you’re buying a home in the winter, the first thing you should check is the house’s heating system. A functional, efficient furnace and clean ducts are important if you want to stay comfortable and warm throughout the season. If you find any problems with your heating system, let your seller know that they need to repair it before you sign for the title.

2)    A discount on the sticker price. Winter is the slowest time of year for selling a home. The houses remaining on the market tend to be the leftovers from fall sales. As a result, you should be able to haggle your seller into knocking a few thousand dollars off of their asking price. Don’t be afraid to walk away if they aren’t willing to give you a good discount, either. After all, there will always be more houses on the market in the spring.

3)    A quick mortgage approval. Since lenders have fewer clients to deal with in the winter, you should expect a fast and easy mortgage approval process after you commit to buying a home. Don’t humor any banks that try to give you the runaround – you can always take your business elsewhere.

There are definitely fewer houses for sale in the winter, but the slow market gives anyone buying a home a major advantage in terms of negotiating. If you make sure to seek out functional heating, a good discount and a quick approval, you’ll have a peaceful, cozy holiday season.