If you need to sell your mobile home in the winter, should you prepare yourself for a painful financial hit? Or perhaps an extended stay on the market? Not at all!
Here are five reasons why selling a home in winter doesn’t deserve the chilly reception it gets.
Homes Sell … Even During the Worst Month to Sell a House
Amidst the negativity we hear about selling homes in the winter, it’s easy to overlook one important detail:
Homes DO sell in winter. A lot of homes.
Recent data tells us that approximately 1.76 million homes sold in January, and another 1.69 million in February. That’s nearly 3.5 million homes over two months — including the shortest month of the year!
October and December compete for the honor of being the worst month to sell a house. Even in each of those months, however, buyers recently picked up more than 2.2 million homes. That’s nothing to sneeze at and a clear sign that people buy homes year-round.
Affordability and Mobile Homes Go Hand-in-Hand
Homes sold in winter months can net a lower premium than those sold in warm-weather months. (The premium is the amount paid over the home’s estimated market value.)
But a crucial portion of the mobile home market is buyers looking for an affordable alternative to the expenses associated with buying traditionally built homes. They don’t enter the market ready to jump on high premiums in competitive markets. An attractive mobile home priced right will sell whatever the calendar reads.
Being in the right market also can help. Average wage earners have the best shot at finding an affordable home in:
For mobile homes close to these areas, the combination of money-smart mobile home, quiet winter selling season, and affordable location may make for a scenario too good for buyers to pass up, AND a swift sale for sellers.
Buyers Are Motivated
The summer months merit their vaunted position in real estate circles for a few reasons:
- Kids are between school years, making a summertime move the best time to change school districts without too much disruption.
- Longer days and warmer weather encourage prospective home buyers to head out for tours and open houses.
- Moving possessions such as large pieces of furniture is easier without issues of cold, snow (or cold rain), and ice to consider.
It’s the collective small inconveniences of a wintertime move that tell you home buyers are motivated.
They’re not dawdling, enjoying some sun as they drive from one listing to the next. They’re bundling up and clearing snow from their cars, if they live in many parts of the country. They are looking to buy and may be predisposed to closing a deal faster in the winter than they would be in the summer.
A winter move also can suggest a change in employment — either a new employer or a promotion that prompts a relocation — which underscores the desire of the prospective homebuyer to close a deal. They have a lot going on, resources, and no time to lose.
It’s Never Winter Online
… and a lot of people shop online!
The National Association of Realtors notes that in 1981, 22% of home buyers sought homes in newspaper ads, while 8% relied on friends as an information source.
By 2018, 44% of home buyers look for homes online first. And why not? In the comfort of your own home, you can find:
- Detailed property information, including annual taxes
- Photos and videos
- Hundreds, if not thousands, of properties in your general search area
… and much more.
Because it never snows on the internet, shoppers can take their time and look at whatever property catches their eye. Ensure that your mobile home’s online presence stands out by:
- Repairing broken or weathered elements
- Shooting well-lit photos
- Cleaning/depersonalizing and organized rooms
- Including images of park amenities, if applicable
Don’t overlook these online-focused tips for selling your home in the winter. They can help get people to see your place in person — and our final point offers additional tips for making that tour a success!
Setting a Scene Couldn’t Be Easier
Imagine coming across an online listing for an affordable mobile home resplendent in holiday decorations, with thick blankets draped on a couch and steam rising from mugs of hot chocolate on the coffee table.
Who WOULDN’T want to visit that home?
Winter can be a beautiful time of year to dress your mobile home to impress. And not just in photos, but during showings, too.
- Ensure cleanliness by laying out clean doormats and removing any mud or snow tracked in by family members (especially the furry, four-legged kind!).
- Organize cleaning supplies just out of sight to make quick clean-ups easy.
- Clear snow entirely from all walkways and parking areas, as well as from any outdoors features of note.
- Ensure the home is bright. Don’t just blast every room with light; take advantage of any holiday decorations to lend the space some artful lighting.
- Create an aroma that guests will remember. There’s never a better time to make a fresh batch of cookies!
While many people rely on the internet, some still go about house hunting the old-fashioned way: driving by homes or through neighborhoods. Make sure you set a scene that’ll make an impression!
The Most Important Winter Selling Number
Taking the right steps can help you make sure that there’s no single worst month to sell a house. After all, the only number that matters when you sell a home in the winter is “1.” Why that number? Because you only need one buyer!
Follow the suggestions presented here, and you may be well on your way to scoring that sale! MHVillage can help.