“Rain, rain, go away…” The spring months can be wet here in Chicagoland. You’ve probably heard the old saying that April showers bring May flowers. Well, here in our area, March, April, and May have all been known to bring around gentle sprinkles, torrential downpours — and even off-season snow.
Rainy weather is a fact of life during spring — but that doesn’t make it any more pleasant to deal with, especially when you and your real estate agent are scheduled to go out and look at listings.
But while turning on your wiper blades and splashing through puddles may not be your idea of a good time, rainy days don’t have to derail your spring home search. In fact, house hunting in the rain can actually offer homeseekers some unique opportunities and benefits.
Don’t let spring rain spoil your house hunt! Here are three ways to make the most of rainy weather as you go and look at homes around Chicagoland:
See How the Home Holds Up to the Weather
Seeing a property on a sunny spring morning can help you look at a home in its best possible light. But gray and rainy days can give you another important perspective, allowing you to see how a home will stand up to rough weather — and if there are any pressing concerns or issues that bubble up.
When visiting a home on a rainy day, you and your real estate agent can look for weather-related issues inside and out, such as:
- Gutters, downspouts, and drainage. Looking from the ground, does water seem to be flowing through the gutters, or pouring over the sides? Does water pass through the drainpipes and flow safely away from the house, or are there issues — such as standing water, or a disconnected downspout?
- Roof damage. Rainy weather may help you notice moss, missing shingles, or roof damage. Inside, a quick visit to the attic or upper floors may help you observe wet spots, mold, or other signs of potential water intrusion.
- Basement or crawlspace. Do you notice a damp or musty smell in the home’s lowest levels — or visible signs of dampness, such as water stains, wet spots, or mildew?
- Standing water. Do you notice pools of water or swampy areas in the front yard or driveway?
In addition to these major concerns — many of which are required disclosures from sellers, and can be properly examined during a future home inspection — seeing a home on a rainy day can give you a chance to look for other features that are important to you.
Can you imagine walking to and from the nearest CTA station on a wet day? Do you notice any drafts or cold spots? Is there plenty of garage space to park your car and get it out of the downpour? Does the entryway have plenty of room for kicking off your boots? A dark and wet day can also be a great opportunity to test out a home’s lighting, and check the views from the windows and doors.
Does It Feel Like the Right Fit?
If you love the look and feel of the home on a less-than-ideal day, imagine how much you may enjoy it when the weather brightens up! For many buyers, touring a home is all about seeing if you can picture yourself living there.
Do you want to explore every inch of the space? Do you start mentally laying out your furniture and decor when you walk into a new room? If you find yourself falling in love with the property — especially on a stormy day — this could be a sign that it really is “the one” for you.
You might also be able to use the rainy weather to your advantage. For example, if you’re touring the property as part of an open house, you may get more time and space to explore if the weather turns away those constant crowds of curious neighbors. On a rainy day, the seller’s agent may also be more than happy to stay inside to chat and address all your questions, rather than heading back out into the wet and windy weather.
Find Fun Ways to Stay Warm, Dry, and Safe
As you get ready to look at listings during a spring storm, don’t forget to stay safe and start preparing for whatever the weather may throw your way.
It may help to build yourself a checklist for those rainy day home tours. Here are a few ideas to consider:
- Pack an umbrella.
- Dress in layers, so you can take off your wet clothes as needed when you go indoors. Don’t forget to bring a water-proof jacket!
- Be ready to take off your wet rain boots when entering a listing. Your real estate agent may also encourage you to bring shoe covers if you don’t want to remove your footwear at each stop. Some home sellers may also provide covers you can borrow while touring their home.
- Bring along a mug or thermos of your favorite rainy day pick-me-up — such as warm tea, coffee, or hot chocolate.
- Check the weather regularly, and try to schedule showings for days that are forecast to be clear, if possible — while knowing that Mother Nature may not always cooperate with your plans.
Ready to Start Your Search?
Do you want to find a home that allows you to relax and embrace outdoor living? Looking for a property near the Lake? A home with enough backyard space for the chicken coop you’ve always dreamed about? We get you.
At Baird & Warner, our agents are hyperlocal experts who know Chicagoland inside and out. Your Baird & Warner agent will get to know exactly what you’re looking for, so you can focus your search and navigate the market with confidence. As the largest independent and family owned real estate brokerage in Chicagoland, Baird & Warner has earned the respect of the brokerage community by always making the real estate process easier — winter, spring, summer, or fall. And with mortgage and title services in-house, our one-stop-shopping approach takes the stress out of sealing the deal on your new home, so you can get back to cozying up and watching the rain in no time.