Is there really a “best” time to buy or sell a house?
This is a question that I have been
asked many times over the years and to be honest I’m not sure there really is
one true answer. There are so many factors to consider when dealing with real
estate that I don’t even think it’s possible to list them all let alone explain
them. I also want to point out that statistics are a great guideline but can
never reflect the entire story.
Look at it this way; what are the
odds of being hit by lightening? The answer is 1 in 3,000 or 1/30th
of 1%. The reason that we don’t worry about being hit by lightening is because
we know that the odds are so low.
That is of course unless your name happens to be Roy Cleveland Sullivan. He was
hit by lightening 7 times in his life and survived them all. Ask him what he
thinks of statistics. The point I’m trying to make here is that it’s OK to use
the following information as points of interest but don’t take it too much to
heart. At the very least I found it interesting for buyers and sellers alike.
January is said to be the best month to make an offer on a
There is some logic to this fact but
a lot of debate. Some feel that there are less house hunters because it is cold
or that sellers may be willing to accept a lower bid because there are fewer
offers as compared to the spring time. Others blame fewer offers due to the
arrival of Xmas time credit card bills and other holiday related expenses such
as travel and entertaining. My thoughts on the subject? While statistically
true I say that regardless of the month if you find the house of your dreams
you had better make an offer quick or risk losing the chance.
Sring time is for sellers
As the cold weather months wane away
it is true that there are more buyers looking at homes than in the winter. The
reasons for this are attributed to many factors including tax refund checks and
better weather to enjoy house hunting. The facts are that in most areas of the
country home sales do peak in the spring but that doesn’t mean that a seller
should wait to see birds before listing their home! Many, many homes are sold throughout
the year and there is another thought to be considered here. Listing your home
during the “off season” means less competition and that’s a good thing for a
seller. I say it’s best to list your home when the time is right for you and
not based on the temperature.
Make an offer on your dream home on the 1st Tuesday of the
I love this one and if you want me
to explain it, well, I can’t! The best explanation I’ve heard for this
statistic is that the homeowner that’s trying to sell their home just made
another mortgage payment and is more motivated than ever to accept an offer.
Hmmmmmm………. Or maybe he didn’t hear anything from the couple that attended his
open house the weekend before? OK, you got me but the prevailing theory is that
the 1st Tuesday of the month is a home buyer’s best friend.
Listing your home on a Thursday will get better results
The reasoning behind this plan is
that your home will only be on the market 2 days before it is available for
weekend showings. I can live with that because interested parties will have 2
weekend opportunities to see your home in the first 9 days and the truth is
that newer listings tend to receive more offers at full price. Buyers know that
they may be able to make a lower offer if your home’s been on the market for a
long time but are hesitant to risk losing their opportunity to a higher offer
when the listing is fresh.
If you have any interesting real
estate stats that you’d like to share with me please let me know. I’d like to
hear them as well and who knows, maybe I can share them with my clients.