Though packing up and moving in December (right in the middle of the holiday season) or January (right in the middle of the coldest time of the year) might not seem like the most appealing thing to put on your to-do list right now, it can actually save you both time and money if you’re planning to move in New York City within the next year of so.
Why? Like all industries, real estate in New York City typically follows a pretty predictable cycle. Spring and summer are the peak seasons for moving, with activity tapering off after the first weeks of September, and staying that way until mid-March. Searching during “the off-season” can have its benefits in a number of ways.
For one, there will be less competition. If you’ve ever fallen in love with an apartment and had someone else put a deposit on it before you could even finish your tour, you know that the housing market, both for renters and buyers, is extremely competitive. By conducting your search in a time when there are fewer other people out there looking for a new place to live, you have a better shot at getting what you want.
Prices during the winter months can also be cheaper. Landlords, especially, may be looking to fill vacancies during the off-season, and might be more willing to negotiate rental prices. For buyers, less competition may mean avoiding a bidding war and getting a listing for near–or even below–the asking price.
Lastly, you’ll also have an easier time booking moving help during the winter months. During high season, the best moving companies typically book up months in advance, so if you’re not proactive, you could be forced to settle for a less-than-reputable moving service, or to pay a premium to hire a good one on a busy weekend.
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