There are many factors to consider before listing your home for sale. It can be an overwhelming process that even with the best of agents in your corner, a lot of questions may still keep you up at night. One of the biggest debates center around the best time to list your home for sale. There is no simple answer and what might work for you may not for someone with a totally different set of variables, regardless of whether they are across the country or your next door neighbor. Below are some pros and cons that I have picked up through experience and research over my years in the business.
The overwhelming majority of responders say that Spring is the best time to list your home. Warming temperatures, increased buyer activity, and historical housing data all say a Saturday in the spring will yield the highest return for sellers. This is the season when you can capture the most buyers on the market – you’re settled in nicely before the new school year begins, have a tax refund in the bank account, and there are plenty of homes on the market from which to choose.
However, there’s one glaring downside to listing in the Spring to consider. You are likely to end up facing off against an overabundance of competition in your area. If you are selling and also looking to buy, looking for a market with less competition with many sellers in need to sell would may render the Spring less ideal for you.
In terms of weather, summer is hotter, but it may not be for listing your home. The warmer weather, summer break, and the drive to be outdoors can all lead a seller to think they may see increased traffic. But, many buyers take their vacations over the summer, so it may be slower than expected.
The buyers you are likely to see are serious and may be largely motivated by finding a home before schooling for their children start in the fall. If you happen to be in a township with highly coveted schools, this may still prove to be a competitive time for your home. For those in towns that are not well known for their schools, stay open minded to pricing competitively to drive more demand.
Fall is often considered to be the worst time to list your home, as many buyers have already purchased in line with school schedules and summer trips. This in turn makes it a great time for a buyer to do some bargain hunting. From the listing side, it’s crucial to consider if this is the right market to enter. Too many buyers, this signals a seller that is desperate to sell, particularly in areas of the country where Winter is most harsh.
Listing in the fall calls for a strong marketing push and the expectation traffic may be limited compared to other seasons. If you are in Southern markets, you may actually benefit from this time of year and see some opposite fortune compared to other regions of the country.
Winter is a hidden gem! The market has been so hot, resulting in a lack of inventory, that Winter is becoming a popular time to list. It’s a season where you’ll receive more serious buyers, particularly in areas with harsh weather conditions and you’ll also face less competition as most sellers wait until Spring. As a seller looking to buy, you may be able to take advantage of less competition and sellers who are in need to sell.
Don’t let the new Spring pass you by! If you can, get on the market in the winter.. Fear not, if you don’t get the terms you want in the Winter the Spring market is right around the corner.
Discussing your own unique variables with your agent before listing your home can make a world of difference. The season, whether your market is favoring buyers or sellers, is as important as any factor you consider while moving through your selling journey. Understanding the best time to list is a pivotal factor to help you get the most return on your investment!
If you’re ready to talk with one of our licensed Realtors® to discuss selling your home, contact us today!