February 5, 2020
Now that Punxsutawney Phil has predicted an early spring, whether or not he proves to be right, the persistence of the Groundhog Day silliness does prove a point about seasonal weather: it matters. People have kept the tradition alive for centuries because the point at which our days turn from more- to less-dreary is keenly anticipated by just about everybody.
It makes a point that future Greenwich home purchasers sometimes overlook: how strongly seasonal changes may affect the properties they are evaluating. A house that shows beautifully on a sunny afternoon in springtime might be considerably less inviting when the weather turns stormy—particularly if there are hard-to-detect drainage issues.
It's one of a number of qualities first-time Greenwich home purchasers may not think about, yet which they’ll be wise to keep in mind. These might best be called “variable” variables—transient qualities that impact a property’s livability. Notable among them:
Traffic. At ten o’clock in the morning, a house in town overlooking a fairly quiet corner can turn considerably less idyllic once the frenetic afternoon commute begins—and it could continue past sunset.
Light. A house with too little window coverage might not reveal that deficiency at high noon in July. But at this time of year, given the shortened duration of the daylight hours—depressing effects could be striking.
Noise. Sound pollution from a busy airport would be self-evident to any home purchaser—but the impact of a smaller nearby airfield might be less obvious. Especially if weekend flight patterns intensify overhead commotion, the result could be as unsettling as it was unexpected.
The way experienced homebuyers head off variable variables is by combing the available photograph (particularly those showing the property in different seasons) as well as by visiting the neighborhood at different days and times. Casual conversations with future neighbors in restaurants and stores can add useful insights about the area, too—and whether it will be a good fit for your family.
Right now, ahead of real estate’s spring season, could be the perfect time to find a well valued property.