Suggestions for rehabbing in slow winter months?

Hi everyone, I’m new to the rehab business and would like some input from people who rehab in cold climates like Milwaukee where I live. Here’s a couple questions that I have:

  1. Can you use the slow winter months to your advantage? For example… buying a home cheaper in the slow winter market and rehabbing it to sell in the spring when the market picks up?

  2. Is it wise to pick up a property towards the fall with hopes of selling it in the winter??

Here in Milwaukee winters are long and cold… not too many people moving during the months of Nov - Feb.

Basically I’m just interested in hearing about people’s own experiences in dealing with the slow winter months and how that affects your strategy.

I look forward to hearing from my fellow Northerners :slight_smile:


Hey KoolKat,

I’m in Cleveland, and we just had a bad winter too. The answer to your questions are yes and yes.

You can get better deals going into winter, especially on junkers. Your subcontractors will cut you great deals when work is slow. And in cold winter climates, the market goes crazy when the weather finally breaks.

If you time it right, you’ll have rehabs ready to sell first thing in the spring, and you’re all set!


I’m originally from New England and Rich is right on the money…when the ice and snow thaw so usually does the sluggish RE market.


Same here in CA. We bought our primary residence in December and closed on Dec. 23rd. Nobody was out buying homes, they were all out Christmas shopping. The Sellers wanted to get on with their holiday plans so we saved ourselves probably $20K on the deal.

Earlier we had sold our house that year, but during June when everybody’s kids were between school semesters. We listed our house at 10a.m. at a high price and by 4p.m. that SAME DAY began escrow at our asking price.

While California’s winter consisted of four days of rain… even here there is a glut of handymen in the winter because the major housing developments don’t like to do projects that get rained on torn into by the winds. So getting drywallers, plumbers, handymen are on the cheap during winter. But in the Spring… they’re all out doing the big jobs on the new communities and good luck getting one to show up.

You’re on the right track, stick with your plan.

Thanks for chiming in everyone :slight_smile: After the birth of our second child (any day now) I plan on getting to work rehabbing!


i bought my fixer upper in October, had it on the market in November, took it off the market in April after i didnt have any offers, and rented it out. Im in Nebraska and i have noticed that asking prices in the winter are down in the $40’s and low $50’s. Now you cant find any under $60,000 so homes are definitly cheaper in the winter