DECEMBER 2, 2013 TIPS & ADVICE
Now that you’re in the mood to shop (but unwilling to spend unless the price is right, as surveys indicate), take note of some of the best deals during the month of December.
Did you know that home prices, historically, are lower in December than they are in any other month? Sure you’re probably not looking this time of year, but with mortgage rates still low,home appreciation slowing and overheated markets moving away from the bubble brink and becoming more affordable, perhaps you should be. After all, there’s very little competition this time of year, so you could get the house you want at the price you want (think, no bidding wars or multiple offers to contend with), particularly if the seller is anxious to sell before the end of the year. Start the research on Zillow to make sure you know what is going on in your market — what’s been sold recently and for how much. Being equipped with this information and working with an agent who specializes in your area ensures you make the best possible initial offer.
In December — as it gets colder and the days get shorter — we tend to stay put, making it more difficult for landlords to fill their vacancies. What this means to you: a better deal on rental units. Are you in the market for a new home or apartment? Start researching prices now, using Zillow’s Rent Zestimates®, so that you’re as prepared as possible to get those negotiations started successfully.
In December, as car dealers scramble to get the 2013 models off their lots to reach specific year-end sales objectives, they’re offering some of the best prices of the year. Granted, selection is limited, and the car you want may not have all the bells and whistles you’d like, but a deal is a deal. Car buying experts say the best bargains of the month can be found, specifically, on Dec. 31. Next best days: Dec. 27-30.
Sure, Black Friday is an excellent time to buy a new TV, but typically the rock-bottom prices apply only to third-tier manufacturers. For the best prices of the year on top-line models, buy in late December (or even in January and into early February, leading up to the Super Bowl). That’s when manufacturers look to clear stock before revealing 2014 models.
Retailers release their hot toys lists long in advance of the holidays with hopes of driving traffic and boosting sales. But while you may have been tempted to make a purchase or two on Black Friday or Cyber Monday, it pays to wait. According to Dealnews, the best prices on “hot” toys are typically during the first two weeks of December. What about toys that are not on the “hot” list? According to Dealnews data, prices on run-of-the-mill toys (such as playsets, dollhouses and more) can drop by as much as 37 percent in December.