The right time to buy purchase a home can be different for every person and their specific situation. The state of your finances is a crucial determining factor when it comes to the best timing. Your career or any big life changes, such as marriage or a new baby, can also play a major role in the timing of buying a home.
The most important thing to do first is to take time to research how to buy a house, assuming it’s your first time, as there are many steps involved. You’ll want to have a good understanding of how long it might take for the purchase to close and many other parts of the homebuying process.
When there are more homes on the market than buyers searching for homes, also known as a “buyer’s market,” sellers must competitively price their homes. But seasonality can still play a part, even when it’s a “seller’s market,” meaning there are more homes for sale than buyers, spring and summer are high seasons and there may be more inventory available which can mean that prices might be lower during this time. Studies have shown that May has the highest inventory of homes for sale in most markets. Sellers are looking to close the sale and settle into their new homes before September and the beginning of the new school year.
When the economy is doing well, unemployment rates are down and new construction is popping up all over town, you might be a good time to buy a home. During conditions like these, you’re more likely to be doing well financially too, better able to afford a new home. Prices will be competitive because of the new construction and high inventory and you will save money because of the low interest rates.
Wintertime may seem contradictory to buying when the inventory is high and in a busy season, but if you can find a home during the chillier months of the year when inventory tends to be much lower, you may be able to get a better price. If a home is listed in December or January, it is likely because the owner needs to move quickly, perhaps due to a job relocation or a career change. The owner will be more likely to negotiate the sale price and other factors impacting the closing, such as appliances, inspection costs, and a home warranty.
The right time to buy a home might be when you feel it’s right, perhaps you’ve saved enough for a significant down payment, your credit score is high with most or all major debts paid off, etc. Maybe you were recently married and now have two incomes to support a mortgage, or you’re expanding your family and need more square footage. These are good reasons to start researching current market trends. It is important that you go with your gut and seek advice from an experienced realtor when you think you’re ready.