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When is the best time to buy a home?

Buying a home is a momentous time in a person’s life. It can be extremely stressful not only because it’s a large expense but also because the housing market can fluctuate over the course of a single year. Buying at the wrong time may mean you need to pay more over the life of your loan because you bought when interest rates were high. It is tricky to predict the future of the real estate market, and there are factors to consider before seeking out mortgage loans in Santa Fe, Española, Los Alamos or elsewhere in Northern New Mexico.

The Right Time to Start Searching

When you’re searching for available homes, there are seasonal variables to consider. Many real estate professionals have found that the best time of year for people to buy is in December. The selection of houses tends to be smaller, but sellers are often highly motivated. For buyers, this can lead to a condensed closing schedule, more flexible buyer terms and a lower overall price. Moving in December or January when we’re having a true Northern New Mexico winter, however – perhaps not easy!

Most people prefer buying during the more traditional housing season, which falls between late spring and August, when there are more homes on the market. That means you have a much better selection to choose from, but prices can be higher. March and April are typically the worst months to buy a home because there are fewer choices.

Look Up Pricing Trends in Your Area

The housing market in one city could be completely different from the next. Fortunately, it has never been simpler to look up housing trends on a city-by-city basis. You can look up sales by year and compare them to the prices houses are going for today. When houses have significantly increased, then the market is most likely in a bubble, which means it may not be the best time to buy.

You can also look up trends related to how long on average it takes houses in your area to sell. When houses stay on the market for a while, it becomes a buyer’s market. This is the time for you to buy because sellers are more inclined to simply sell the home, even if that means selling at a lower price. When houses sell quickly, it becomes a seller’s market, and houses tend to cost more.

Hot Tip: Submit an Offer on a Holiday

When you find a house you like, you may be ready to submit an offer. Many real estate agents claim that the best days to send in an offer are holidays. The reason is that everyone else is busy, and with little to no competition, you may have it accepted that day. When Thanksgiving, Christmas, Valentine’s Day or anything else is just around the corner, look into houses in your area. To ensure you can quickly move on the house you love, consider filling out a mortgage loan application in advance.

Don’t Forget About Interest Rates

Most people will require a real estate mortgage, which could take up to 30 years to pay off. Therefore, it’s best to purchase houses when interest rates are low. If you buy a house when rates are high, then you will pay substantially more over the next few decades. Although predicting interest rates is difficult, the Federal Reserve and the Congressional Budget Office do provide projections regularly.

Once you are ready to buy a home, it is simply a matter of picking the best moment to get into the market. Getting pre-approved for your mortgage loan will help you be ready when you find a home you love. When you need a mortgage loan in Santa Fe, Del Norte Credit Union can help. Contact us to learn more, and we will guide you step-by-step through the application process.