The idea may be crazy: Buy homes for sale in South Lake Tahoe on top of all your other holiday expenses like gift shopping, white Santa parties, holiday soirees and countless festive dinners. However, if you have had home buying on the mind, now is a good time to do it. For a few reasons too! Check these out.
Less home buyer competition
Per the mentioned activities above, it is a busy time of year! Our social calendars feel packed, while our wallets do not. A lot of buyers put home shopping on ice until after the holidays. Add in that a lot of buyers don’t feel like trekking through ice, snow and whatever else Mother Nature provides to go view South Lake Tahoe homes for sale. This results in less competition for you. Which means that hot property that just came on the market-the one that had it been listed in the summer would have had multiple offers (and accepted one before you even got a chance to tour)? You get first dibs! Or, one of the first. While there may be less buyers, you won’t be the only one. Also, December seller’s are usually pretty serious too. Which means you likely can get things moving quickly. Just get your financing in order first so you can be ready to make a move.
Speaking of serious seller’s, if these folks are devoted to keeping their homes for sale in South Lake Tahoe in showing condition during the holidays, they probably aren’t interested in playing hardball. Listing South Lake Tahoe homes for sale during this time of year means holding back on decor and keeping your home perfect. Ask any local and they will tell you it is hard to keep a clean home with all that ice and snow getting tracked in. This doesn’t mean a summer seller isn’t serious. It just means that some folks will list during the busiest months just to see what they can get. Which sometimes diverts a serious buyers attention to the wrong house.
Currently, we have tax benefits if you buy by Dec 31st. You can deduct mortgage interest to property taxes. However, the House of Representatives just passed a version of the GOP proposed tax plan. This would cap the property tax deduction at $10,000. The House bill also would only allow homeowners to deduct the mortgage interest up to $500,000, down from the current $1 million. Several closing fees are tax deductible but be sure to chat with your accountant and South Lake Tahoe realtor about this one.
A realistic picture of the house
We know, that summer listing photo of South Lake Tahoe real estate is pretty dreamy. Blue skies surrounded by beautiful mountain ranges with a landscaped yard full of lush bushes and plants? Summers are great in Tahoe, and winter is beautiful, but it isn’t all roses during the snowy months. You can see what your property looks like without the leaves, bushes and flowers. In addition, you learn things like how easy the driveway is to access with ice and snow, what the walk way options are and most of the time, if you need professional snow removal or if you can do it yourself. There are also certain inspection items you may not be aware of during the summer. Does the entire house get efficient heat? Or is there one room that feels like a meat cellar even though the heat is on and the fireplace is going. Does the door get jammed with the moisture? Are there any drafts? Pay close attention as you tour and be sure to have the inspector check it out.
2018 will have some changes
These benefit both buyers and sellers at some point in the year. While the first half is expected to be tricky as far as limited inventory and increasing home prices, this is all expected to slow down once more inventory floods the market in the last half of the year. Unfortunately, we are expecting mortgage rates to hit 5% by the end of 2018 as well. Prices aren’t expected to come down either. So buying now includes plenty of the above perks AND locking in a lower mortgage rate.
If you are looking for a South Lake Tahoe realtor, give me a call. I would be happy to help guide you in both buying and selling in our local market.