How Seasonality Affects The Mortgage Industry

By Subodh / February 1, 2014

Seasonality can affect just about any type of industry, including the mortgage industry. Inclement weather often makes people want to stay indoors instead of venturing out to spend money. In some regions of Canada, it becomes even more difficult for people to leave their homes to find new properties to purchase. That can put a damper on the mortgage industry.

With the right planning, mortgage brokers and their customers can make the most of any season, even when snow and ice prevent people from leaving their homes during the winter.

Why Seasonality Affects the Mortgage Industry

seasonalityIt’s rather easy to see why seasonality would affect the mortgage industry. People don’t want to hunt for properties during winter because the cold weather, ice, and snow make it inconvenient. They are more likely to wait until spring, summer, or fall. This gives them the opportunity to explore houses and commercial properties casually.When it comes to looking at properties, the majority of people prefer wearing T-shirts instead of heavy coats.

This affects the mortgage industry by reducing the number of people who need help buying property. If no one wants to buy homes during the winter, then mortgage companies don’t have any customers.This isn’t always the case, though.

Some winters have extremely mild weather. Most people don’t mind hunting for properties in the cold. They just don’t want to tolerate snow, ice, and freezing rain. If it’s a mild winter, then mortgage brokers in Canada can expect a slight downturn in business. Realistically, though, they don’t lose so much business that they start to worry about making ends meet.

winter-snow

Harsh winters can have a more dramatic impact on the mortgage industry. The more snow and ice that accumulates on the ground, the less business the industry can expect. After all, who wants to move into a new house when there’s an inch of ice on the ground? Even people who grow up in icy climates would rather move on a sunny spring day.

Seasonality Affects Some Areas More Than Others

Many mortgage brokers say that seasonality affects some areas more than others. Those who work in Toronto and other big cities rarely see significant declines in business. There are probably a couple reasons for this:

  1. Large cities have better municipal services that keep roadways clear, so people can go out to visit real estate without worrying about car accidents.
  2. Large cities have larger populations, so they have higher numbers of people who either don’t mind moving during the winter or feel that they have little choice.

Mortgage brokers in rural areas often face the most difficult winters. The snow-covered roads keep people inside their homes. Plus, rural areas have smaller populations, so the brokers already have fewer customers to work with.

Beating the Winter Season

Knowing how seasonality affects the mortgage industry should help mortgage brokers and property buyers make the most of winter.

Mortgage brokers who suspect that they will have fewer clients during the winter, either because they work in rural areas or because meteorologists have forecasted a particularly harsh winter, should set time aside to review their business practices and prepare for the busy spring season.winter season

While brokers might not enjoy winter’s slow business, they can make the most of their time by cleaning the office, upgrading equipment, and making new contacts that will lead to more work after the thaw.

Of course, the winter season also gives mortgage brokers a good time to take vacations. If you don’t have many clients coming through the door, why not take off for a week or two? It makes more sense to do so during winter than during the busier spring, summer, and fall seasons.

Property buyers can also use seasonality to get better deals.Ā Mortgage specialists working in this industry usually have some wiggle room that lets them lower interest rates and other fees. Obviously they would rather not do this. When faced with a slow winter, though, they might lower or eliminate certain fees to attract more business.That’s great news for real estate buyers who want to spend as little money as possible on mortgages.

Seasonality certainly plays a role in the mortgage industry, but that doesn’t mean everything comes grinding to a halt when the temperatures drop below 4.5 degrees C. Smart mortgage brokers know how to make the most of winter’s downtime. Real estate investors can also use the season to get better deals.That makes seasonality a factor that can slow business, but also present great opportunities for people willing to tolerate the inconvenience of buying property during winter.