The Best Time To Sell Your Home Might Depend on You.
One of the questions I’m often asked is, “When is the best time to list my home?”. My short answer is, it depends. The best time to sell might be different for you than for your neighbor, depending on what your motiving factors are.
- You need to sell right away. There are several reasons you might need to list your home asap. Getting transferred to another state, going through a divorce, or just hating where you live are several reasons you might need to sell now rather than later. If this is the case, right now is the best time to list your house.
- You want the highest sales price of the season. Our real estate market is seasonal. This is true regardless of if it is a seller’s market or a buyer’s market. Almost without fail, the same couple of months post the highest sales prices of the season.
- You don’t want your house sitting on the market. If you do not want to accommodate showings for a month or two while waiting for the right buyer, pick a time of year when there is less competition or lower average days on market.
- You don’t want your kids to have to change schools midyear. If this is your situation, you might want to list your home within several weeks before or after school lets out for the summer.
Neighborhood or Area Changes Can Affect the Best Time to Sell Your Home
If you are in an area with new construction that is nearing close out, you might be better off waiting for the builder to sell out before listing your home. If they are not near completion, make sure you point out all of the features you added that don’t come with a new home such as landscaping, fencing, window coverings, etc. Other things in your area can affect pricing as well, such as employment opportunities coming or leaving the area and infrastructure changes like light rail or parks. Make sure you know what is happening in your area while deciding on your timing – it could affect your bottom line.
The Best Time to Sell Your Home According to Historical Data
I’m a little bit of a data geek or stats nerd, and in my industry, that is a good thing. Looking back on historical data helps me determine where the market is and where it is likely to go. Of course, there are times when the market diverts some from the typical trends, but it always comes back. Because 2020 and 2021 had some abnormalities due to COVID, I’m going to use the previous 5 years (2015 – 2019) to help determine the best time to list your home according to historical data.
For each category, the month with the most points is the best month for sellers. Tables are not visible on some cell phones (try turning your phone sideways).
Average Days on Market
The number of days between when a home is listed and when it goes under contract. June is the best month for sellers with the lowest number of days on market followed by a tie with May and July.
The number of homes that went under contract during each month. May wins this one closely followed by June then April.
The number of listings that were available each month. A lower number represents less competition for sellers. February, January and March take the top 3 spots. The end of summer and beginning of fall is when our inventory is highest.
Median Sales Price
Perhaps the most important metric for determining the best time to list your home is the median sales price of homes sold each month. The months with the highest sales price are typically May or June. After June, the market starts to decline and reaches the lowest sales price of the season around November. After November, prices stay fairly even through February when the market moves up to the next peak in June.
It’s important to remember that homes which closed in May or June, went under contract in March, April and May. Because of this lag, I am assigning points for the previous month (May gets June’s points).
Because prices have consistently gone up during the period we are analyzing, I can’t use the same kind of table for determining the best months to sell based on price. Instead, I will look at a graph and use common sense to assign points to months.
Bottom LIne - When Is the Best Time To List Your Home
Timing a market is an inexact science but, by looking at historical trends, it’s not too difficult to make a fairly accurate educated guess. If you don’t have other motivating factors that influence your timing, the best months to list your house are March, April and May. If you want to get a jump on the market, starting in late February will allow you to price your home more aggressively while competition is at its lowest. If the timing just doesn’t work for you, June and July will still net you near season high prices and allow you to sell before the market cools.
If you are considering selling your home now or in the near future, give me a call, let’s determine when it’s the best time for you to list your home.