Seasonality of Buying a Mobile Home
Homebuying has seasonal consequences much like most other purchases, and shopping for a mobile home or manufactured home is the same in that respect.
So, when is the best time to actually buy a mobile home?
Midsummer, the week of Thanksgiving, and pretty much any time in December are the opportunities for people shopping for a mobile home to see the least amount of competition. Home prices will be a bit lower, and some of the service providers for transport, set up, and move-in maintenance probably will offer a price break in December.
Supply and demand works for mobile home purchases in that increased competition likely will mean a higher purchase price. If you have a great amount of competition you may enter a bidding war, which is great for the seller but not so great for the buyers. So, avoiding competition means taking a look at the busy times and the slower times in the industry. Fortunately, MHVillage traffic and listing volumes can help tell a story about the best time to buy a mobile home.
Why is MHVillage a Good Gauge for Buying Habits?
MHVillage is the premier website for buying, selling or renting a mobile home or manufactured home. The site sells homes from most states and has a great mix of makes, models and vintage, not to mention floorplan variety. So, when there are shifts in the buying habits of the more than 25 million annual users on the site, they’re pretty plain to see.
As we mentioned, December is a great time to buy a mobile home. It’s a bit counterintuitive because most people prefer to go home shopping and move during the warm season. But that’s a matter of convenience rather than consideration toward the best purchase price.
If December is the time when sales volume is lowest, the buyer is much less likely to enter that bidding war. And if the seller really is seeing few interested buyers, a great deal on your new place could be close at hand. Fewer calls on a home, fewer home tours, and that bit of a winter reticence will play in your favor if you have your home buying game face on regardless of the cold or wet weather.
What Other Times Are Best to Buy a Mobile Home?
The other windows of opportunity for reduced competition in mobile home shopping will be measured in days to weeks. The industry lull during the week of Thanksgiving is real. However, getting all of your paperwork, banking or lending needs, and associated homebuying services corraled into just a few days can be harrowing.
You likely don’t want to sacrifice Thanksgiving Day for the sake of a better than usual home purchase price. So, if you’re looking to pull the trigger in the third week of November, ensure you have all of the logistical details set so the actual home purchase is the only thing you’ll have to do that week. If you’re confronting mobile home transport, set up, installation or any other big mobile home services, perhaps those can be negotiated for the end of the month or early December. But, of course, this all depends on the rapport and flexibility between the seller and buyer.
What About Summer for Buying a Mobile Home?
This can be a bit counterintuitive because spring and summer are the traditional “hot seasons” for home buying. However, there’s a midsummer lull that avoids that early hot season for homebuyers and movers as well as the near-fall/late summer bump associated with the coming and going of students and teachers. This near-fall timeframe also is filled with non-students/teachers who need or want to make a move, and will do so late in the season before classes begin. However, in midsummer, many would-be homebuyers are taking that family vacation or simply laying low, enjoying summer. That’s one of the best times to buy a mobile home or manufactured home.
In the midsummer lull, homebuyers may not get the same break on associated services as they would during the holiday season, but there will be fewer home shoppers. This heightens the likelihood of a price break where it means the most, on the house itself.
Now You Know When to Buy, But How About When to Start?
So we picked the three best times to buy a mobile home according to market supply and demand, but that’s just about the purchase time. The next question to answer is how far ahead a house hunter should begin shopping so that the timing is right for the actual purchase.
This depends on a few factors. Are you paying with cash, do you need financing, will the home move, are there significant needs for repair, maintenance or upgrade? All of these need to be taken into consideration. If you need to move your manufactured home, you’ll want to begin educating yourself on how the process works, and looking for professionals who can help with the move. Our link above will help you get started with both. Likewise, you’ll want an early start on financing your mobile home. Perhaps you want to get pre-approved, or you want to pursue the different types of loans you can get. In either scenario, you’ll want to start researching and getting plans laid out three to four months ahead of your anticipated time of purchase.
Need More Tips on the Best Ways to Buy a Mobile Home?
At MHVillage, our primary goal is to help people buy, sell and rent mobile homes and manufactured homes. If you want more information on the best strategies for buying a mobile home, take a look at our Mobile Home Buyer’s Guide or contact our customer experience team.