Starter homebuyers should take advantage of fall, winter months

by Kelly McCabe

While agents around the country look forward to spring homebuying season every year, there’s one major annoyance for buyers: Other buyers. To circumvent that competition, Trulia suggests that first-time homebuyers on the market for a starter home start their searches now to buy in the fall and winter, when sales typically slow.

For its recent Trulia Inventory and Price Watch report, the real estate outlet examined the supply of starter, trade-up and premium homes nationally and in 100 metros around the country.

The results found that the national starter-home inventory peaks in October and rises 7 percent in the fall months compared to spring. However, whether those increases will occur this year remains to be seen after a summer when the inventory of starter homes around the country plummeted 20 percent from summer 2016.

“Starter homebuyers should begin looking now,” said Trulia senior economist Cheryl Young. “The fall season provides a great opportunity for finding the right home and neighborhood thanks to a bump in homes for sale on the market, followed by lower winter prices.”

Average prices in the winter months also reveal a favorable market for starter homebuyers, with price tags that are 4.8 percent lower, according to Trulia. However, in the third quarter of 2017, starter homebuyers had to shell out 39.7 percent of their monthly income to purchase a home, which was up a staggering 31 percent from 2013.

Source: Trulia