Despite all of the other things we're pressured into buying during the holidays, there are some good reasons to consider a home purchase at this time, if you're planning on it soon anyway.
- Interest rates - Despite already historically low interest rates this year, looking at interest rates in previous years shows a drop every December and January. If the spring time was your target, you may want to push the purchase forward for a chance of 30 years of lower payments.
- Motivated Sellers - Let's face it, buyers haven't been flooding the real estate market lately. Many homes have been on the market longer than people are accustomed to in most markets. Sellers during this time of year can be more motivated to sell, and there may be tax reasons as well.
- Slower Market - Though sellers may be more motivated during the holidays, most buyers are not, so there is less buyer competition. Your chances are better of negotiating a great price when buying slows down.
- Faster Closings - The end of the year brings a slowdown in mortgage business, title company closings, and most services related to real estate closings. So, things can speed up. Also, some lenders are looking to squeeze a bit more business into the current year, so they'll move the process along faster.
- Tax Reasons - Many settlement costs and mortgage points are deductible in the year in which they're paid. So, if you are thinking of buying anyway, doing so before the end of the year can help with this year's tax bite.
Of course, those who like to give you all of these great reasons to buy during the holidays aren't going to offer to help you move during Christmas or New Year's week.