Blog Post Monday 18 August 2014
If your lease is almost up or you’re just plain sick of looking at the same four walls, you just may be considering moving house; in winter!
It’s okay, we know the images that are sending chills up your spine: your mattress and lounge suite strapped to a trailer, plastic wrap flailing in the wind in a lame attempt to keep the rain out. Frost bitten fingers gripping badly packed boxes. General sogginess. The idea of moving in winter is not exactly appealing.
But hold your horses. Now saddle them up. There are, in fact, some really excellent reasons why moving house in the off peak season is the way to go.
1) Avoid the summer rush
Moving in summer might be breezier but not necessarily easier. Just trying to get a look in at an open house during January and February can be like getting into the hottest club on New Year’s Eve without a supermodel friend.
In peak times lines to just see a property can stretch out the door and down the street. Some real estate agents find the crowds so overbearing they resort to a ticket system, bringing the house hunting experience closer to that of buying ham from the supermarket deli.
If every man and his dog are between you and just checking the place out, imagine the Hunger Games-esque battle you’re going to encounter if you actually want to apply.
Looking in winter lets you avoid the crowd, not only allowing you to properly inspect the property but also have some one-on-one real estate agent time, perfect for asking key questions about your potential home-to-be and making a valuable first impression.
2) The ball’s in your court
The lack of competition won’t only reduce your stress levels when trying to evaluate the cupboard space, looking in off peak seasons means that you are looking in a buyers (or renters) market.
With tables turned on real estate agents, the power is back in your hands as the suddenly much sought after potential new resident. This often translates to a drop in price across the board for buyers and renters alike, bringing properties otherwise out of your price range within reach.
Renters will also find that real estate agents are more likely to offer incentives like reduced rent or even including bills into the rental price in an attempt to simply fill a vacancy.
3) Prioritise your warmth
House hunting when the big chill has set in also means that you are far more likely to thoroughly assess the quality of heating and hot water services. Inspecting a house in the dead of winter will have you on the lookout for single-glazed windows and the quality of insulation. Cheap electricity won’t help if you’re losing all the heat through your windows and walls.
With warmth being at the forefront of your mind, you will be sure to negotiate any faulty appliances are fixed before you move in, or perhaps even decide to move somewhere else altogether to avoid any chilly surprises as the temperature drops.
4) Don’t sweat it
Lugging that fridge up three flights of stairs is never going to be a sweat-free experience. But why add an extra twenty degrees to the mix?
While you may be dodging showers on the big move day, you certainly won’t be sweating up the storm of moving in summer. The difference in temperature means that your moving crew – be it the friends and family you coerced or the removalists you hired – will be able to work harder for longer, finishing the job in record time.
5) Off-season rates
Did you know many moving services (think removalists, cleaners and professional packers) offer cheaper rates for mid-week moves? Booking a mid-week move in the moving 'off-season' could have you scoring major discounts and fantastic service. Buy yourself an expensive house-warming gift with all the money you saved by taking the road less travelled.