Iowa is known for its farm fields, corn, and pork… and its universities, medical school, and writer’s workshop as well. This state is often thought of as “flyover country,” but living in the heartland has more perks than you may think.
Iowa is one of the safest places to live in the country and attracts businesses thanks to low taxes and affordable living. Interestingly, many Iowans who leave the state for school or work seem to find their way back before too long.
Interested in buying a home in Iowa? With seasonal fluctuations and cold winters, there are definitely better times to hit the market and not-so-good times. To find the right time to buy a house in a specific city or area, it’s best to work with an experienced local agent. They can help you find your dream home at an excellent price.
Best Time to Buy in Iowa
Like much of the Midwest, the strongest real estate market exists in the spring and summer. That’s when you’ll see the largest number of homes for sale, but you’ll also face the most competition.
Sellers will focus on listing during the busy season in the hopes of getting the best prices. If you want a large variety or the best chance at a dream home, you‘ll want to focus your house hunting on April–May.
As you move into late summer and fall, there are fewer homes on the market but you’ll get much better deals. If you’re patient enough to wait and willing to choose from fewer selections, it’s a great way to get a deal.
If you’re truly a bargain hunter, consider looking for homes in the winter. It’s not a fun time to visit properties, but the sellers will be highly motivated and you may be able to get a great house for a steal.
The Best Places to Buy a Home in Iowa
If you are moving for work, you’ll need to buy near your new job. However, if you have flexibility and plan to look for work when you arrive, you’ll do well if you buy a home in one of these cities.
Iowa City. A university town well-known for its medical school and creative writer’s workshop, Iowa City is also considered a must-see literary destination. From festivals for music and art to award-winning public schools and a thriving downtown, you’ll love living in Iowa City.
Coralville. Iowa City’s more-affordable sibling has accolades all its own. Rated highly for excellent public schools and family-friendliness, Coralville boasts a large shopping center and a variety of coffee shops and parks. This growing city offers easy access to job opportunities as well.
Waukee. This suburb of the state capital gives you the opportunity to enjoy high-quality living, schools, and amenities within easy reach of the job opportunities available in Des Moines. It’s ranked as the #1 best suburb to buy a house in for Iowa and has excellent ratings for schools, housing, nightlife, and family-friendliness.
Bettendorf. In southeastern Iowa, you’ll find an area called “the Quad Cities,” comprised of Bettendorf, Davenport, Moline, IL, and Rock Island, IL. This area has great economic opportunity, and Bettendorf is rated as the best place to live in the area. With incredible schools and housing, along with a variety of activities, this river city is a great place to buy a home.
Decorah. If you’re looking for affordable living in Iowa’s beautiful northeast corner, Decorah is the perfect spot. The median home price is only $165,700, while the median income is $55,282. This safe city of only 7,850 will give you small town living with excellent schools and breathtaking natural scenery in America’s Heartland.
4 Ways to Get a Great Deal On a Home in Iowa
Ready to buy your home in Iowa? Now you know the best time to buy and several cities that you might enjoy living in. But how do you get the best deal on a home? Here are four tips to help you.
Find a Great Iowa Real Estate Agent
Iowa’s real estate market is surprisingly diverse and varies significantly based on the time of year. You’ll want to make sure you connect with a full-service real estate agent that has experience in the area you’re interested in. They can help you negotiate with sellers and find the hidden gems before they’re snapped up by others.
Learn More: What Does a Real Estate Agent Do for a Buyer?
Assess Your Needs and Lay Out Your Goals
How many bedrooms, bathrooms, and square feet are you looking for? What features are non-negotiable, and what would simply be nice to have? Work with your real estate agent to set goals that work within the area and budget you’re working with. They can help you find exactly what you need as you hunt for homes.
Learn More: What to Look for When Buying a Home
Find a Lender and Secure Financing
There are a lot of homebuyer programs that can help you get a lower interest rate or help with a down payment, especially if you’re a first-time homebuyer. Your real estate agent can help you find the right type of mortgage and connect you with a lender that can help.
Learn More: A Step-By-Step Guide to the Home Loan Process
Negotiate For the Best Possible Price
When you find the home you want, it’s time to put in an offer. Your agent can help you negotiate any counter-offers you receive. Once the inspection is complete, you may want to negotiate further if any repairs are required. Your agent will help you drive the right bargain!
Learn More: How to Find a Buyer’s Agent That’s a Good Negotiator
Next Steps to Buy Your Iowa Home
If you’re ready to buy a home in Iowa, consider working with a Clever Partner Agent. These experienced professionals work with major brands and are well-versed in the market you’re interested in. Even better, you may be able to get a cash rebate of up to 1% of the home’s price.
Use it toward your down payment, moving expenses, or simply slip it into savings. It’s your money! If you’re ready for a high-quality full-service buying experience, fill out the form on our site today. One of our representatives will contact you to answer your questions and set up a no-obligation consultation with an agent. Your home is waiting — let’s get started!