Keep Your Home on the Market this Winter
Like the falling of Aspen leaves in October, listings are dropping off the market in Lake Tahoe. It seems like an annual Lake Tahoe cycle that coincides with falling temperatures and the onset of winter. The local golf courses close, the beaches are suddenly empty, holiday decorations appear in stores and “Honey, let’s take the home off the market.” Whoa! Who made up that last rule?
As a Realtor®, I’m always surprised by this fall market phenomena. Did the need to sell diminish dramatically with falling temperatures? Do people really believe that homes don’t sell in the winter at Lake Tahoe? Or perhaps mortgages are harder to obtain during the winter?
So let’s talk about some real concerns sellers may have, how to address them and how to deal with some sales myths.
First off, people really do buy during the winter months. Incline Village Multiple Listing Service data indicates the following number of closed transactions on a per month basis. Here are the actual closed sale averages for the past eight years for homes, condominiums and town homes in the Incline Village/Crystal Bay market. The average number of sales per month is 27.22.
As a seller, did you know that you have less competition during the winter months? There might be only two homes similar to yours and priced like yours compared to 10 during the summer.
We often find that the winter buyer is a completely different buyer than summer buyers. The winter buyer enjoys the active lifestyle of skiing, boarding, snow shoeing and snowmobiling. So selling in winter exposes your property to a new population of buyers—a buyer that thrives on all of Tahoe’s winter activities. Summer at Tahoe can be so delightful, that serious buyers will return during the winter months just to confirm that they really can deal with snow on the ground and 32 degree highs.
Tahoe’s winter elegance helps to sell your home because of how the snow blankets your home and the lights from your home sparkle brighter. The post card feeling that winters in Tahoe provide tend to help sell your home to the winter traveler. Having a fire going or warming hot chocolate and spiced wine tends to help the winter buyer to enjoy the cozy Tahoe experience.
Also, there are always buyers who wait until the last quarter to make a decision due to tax purposes in order to close an escrow at the end of the year. So this group may only see your home if it is listed during the winter.
Though there are those real concerns for the winter buyer, I am fully equipped to provide the buyer with details in order to ease their concerns. I believe that being proactive and anticipating a buyer’s concerns tends to ease their worries.
As a seller, there are common winter selling concerns. Here are the five most typical concerns:
1) I’ll have to deal with snow removal costs.
2) Instead of winterizing, I’ll have to maintain adequate heat to show the home.
3) Buyer prospects might track snow into the home.
4) I’m a snow bird and spend the winter in Arizona. I don’t want to deal with a move when I’m not in the area.
5) I don’t want to deal with showings during the holidays.
Those are legitimate concerns, but they can be dealt with fairly easily. I am here to help you make the selling of your home in winter concern free. I don’t want you to miss out on the opportunity to expose your home to a unique population of buyers. Please don’t hesitate to contact me to find out more details that I can provide you about selling your home during the winter season. Please don’t fall into the winter myth and let’s sell that house!