Reading a couple articles this morning got me to thinking about the parallels between the marketing of homes and cars, from a seasonal value perspective, at least here in the Northern Michigan resort areas. If you pay attention to the vehicle market at all, specifically the late model used vehicles, you will find a huge difference in value in certain genres of the market. Sporty cars, Mustangs, Corvettes, SL series and the like, and luxury brands, Cadillacs, Mercedes, etc. see a huge spike in the spring months, then fall off considerably after July. Trucks & SUV's start their climb in August, and start their decline in January. When you are talking about cars like the SL series, Porsches, even Corvettes, and certain Mustangs (think Shelby models), these spikes can be thousands of dollars, in a span of only a few months. It has always amazed me why if you were gonna make a purchase, especially of a big ticket item that you were planning to enjoy for at least a few years, why you would you buy it during the high market. Same can be said about the Real Estate market, at least in areas like ours here in Antrim County here Michigan. While summer is the prime time for the market for selling homes & condos here, many owners go as far as just taking them off the market come October/November due to inactivity, knowing they will put them back up for sale in the spring when the prices come back up. One article I read was how it is now possible to get 30 year mortgages under 3%. The other was about how home prices have been steadily increasing for the past year, and analysts are predicting that trend to continue. With Fall & Winter come the soft markets, just as in sporty cars, making this time of year the best time to buy that resort or lake property, and unlike the cars, just because it's winter, doesn't mean you can't enjoy the property right away, or even start offsetting the cost of ownership by putting it in one of the rental programs. Condos & homes in The Shanty Creek Resorts, with the excellent skiing, both downhill & cross country trails, and access to the snowmobile trail system, still experience the softer prices, but not quite as much as homes on lakes such as Torch, Bellaire & Michigan that don't have those amenities right outside your door.
If I had the desire to Buy a Shelby GT500, SRT, Corvette etc., I would try real hard to buy it now, in the "soft market". Save a whole lot of money and instead of spending half the spring and early summer shopping for a decent deal, I could start using it as soon as weather permits. Why should a resort home be any different? The fact that I wouldn't have to wait for warm weather to enjoy it with family and friends, and with cheap interest rates it might make more sense than that Shelby, and in many cases more affordable. Now is the time to buy in Northern Michigan.
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