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Spring Real Estate Market: Tips And Tricks To Buying A House In The Spring

Holly Shuffett4-Minute Read
February 05, 2021

For many, springtime means sun, flowers and excitedly making plans for the summer. But if you’re in the market for a new home, springtime for you could look like open houses and competitive offers.

Here’s a guide to help you understand the spring real estate season and determine whether or not you should be buying in the coming months.

What Is The Spring Real Estate Season?

The spring real estate season is well known for an influx of new listings and open houses. For many, the winter is not an ideal buying season (despite lower prices), due to difficulties with transportation or simply the gray skies and slush which can put a damper on the home buying process.

The supply and demand for housing can be frenzied in the wake of warm weather, lawns that are once again lush and green, and the ability to attend open houses. But depending on your situation, the springtime could be the perfect time to buy for you and your family.

Why Is Spring A Good Time To Buy?

The National Association of REALTORS® finds that home prices are highest in the summer and lowest in the winter, leaving fall and spring somewhere in between.

But despite the low prices you may find in the winter, for many, difficulties lie in traveling to open houses across icy roads or through snowy weather. Since the days are also shorter, it can be difficult for the home buyer to visualize everything that a property has to offer against dark skies. Not to mention, the winter months are usually hectic enough with the holiday season in full swing.

On the other hand, with the spring real estate season things like road conditions, holidays, or weather most likely won’t pose an issue. Moving either by yourself or with a moving company shouldn’t raise any safety concerns – although you may have to pay a moving company more than you would in their off-season.

In the springtime, prices aren’t at their peak yet, and you may even be able to get a great deal on a stagnant listing that didn’t sell throughout the winter.

When Does The Spring Housing Market Start?

The same way that warm weather varies throughout the country, so does the beginning of the spring housing market.

For most regions, the spring market begins in April and lasts until June, with July marking the start of the summer housing market. But if you’re from a warmer area, the spring season may begin as soon as January and last until May; if you’re from a colder region, your spring market may be much shorter depending on the season, as it will coincide with the melting of snow.

Tips And Tricks

When it comes to buying a house at any point in the year, you want to do everything you can to get the best deal and have a seamless transition into your new home. Here are some best practices to help guide you when buying a home in the spring:

Research

With the potential for an overly competitive market in the springtime, it’s of the utmost importance that you have done your research and know exactly what you want. Being decisive and prepared can be the best way to edge out other offers or snag your dream home before the price goes up.

In addition to knowing what features you want in your dream home, here are some other things to research well before your spring real estate season:

  • The value of other homes in the area
  • What the neighborhood and/or community has to offer
  • Crime rates and reports according to the local police department
  • The school district and its ratings
  • Downtown area and local attractions

It can also be beneficial to have your loan options sorted well before entering the spring real estate market. In some cases, working with a local lender rather than a national or remote lender can give you the upper hand you need to close a sale. 

Work With The Experts

Real Estate Agent

Before entering the buyer’s market, you should consider working with a real estate agent. Real estate professionals can offer you in-depth knowledge about an area and even get you your dream house based on non-price-related negotiations, like an extra moving day or a more flexible schedule.

Real estate agents are also valuable if you get caught in a bidding war or are worried about paying more than the home is worth. They can conduct a comparative market analysis (CMA) for you and offer estimates and connections for any renovations that might need to be done.

Home Inspector

You might want to consider also enlisting the help of a home inspector for the spring housing market frenzy. Unlike in the summer or winter months, which oftentimes offer natural stress tests for different home features due to weather, spring’s mild climate won’t highlight any potential issues. A home inspection can bring to light any issues with the AC, insulation, drafty windows or leaks.

Locals

The very people who live in an area are the perfect candidates to ask about any concerns – check with other moms about the quality of the school district or ask local business owners how busy downtown may get.

Locals can offer you expert insight on a community – flaws and all.

Stand Out With A VAL

Due to the influx of buyers during the spring real estate season, you’ll want to do everything in your power to give yourself a competitive edge and make your offer stand out. One sure-fire way to do so is by being prepared with a Verified Approval Letter (VAL).

A VAL is an effective way to boost your credibility as a buyer and inform the seller that your finances are reliable and ready to go. Much like a desirable cash offer, having a VAL on hand will show the seller that you’ve made plans for financing and are serious about the purchase.

Since financing is a common culprit for many failed home sales, presenting a VAL will give your seller peace of mind – and just might land you the sale.

The Bottom Line

Buying a house at any point in the year can be stressful and each season presents different pros and cons for home buyers.

But so long as you know what to expect in the spring real estate season, you should be able to make a deal on a home you love. 

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    Holly Shuffett

    Holly Shuffett is a freelance writer for Rock Companies where she usually covers lifestyle and personal finance topics. Holly is also an Oakland University senior pursuing public relations and journalism, and she is interested in learning more about the entertainment and travel industries. In her free time, Holly serves as the secretary for Dance Marathon at OU, is a member of PRSSA, and tutors part time for Dictionary.com.