Timing Your Home Sale
January 25 2017 Posted by Guriqbal Chahal, MBA, PMP
Timing the sale of your home is easier said than done. There are all sorts of factors to consider, from seasonal advantages to the economic climate of a particular region. And that's in addition to political and national issues that might affect your decision about when to sell.
Nevertheless, taking a strategic approach can shave weeks or months off the selling cycle. That is, if it's feasible for you to wait. In some cases, you may have to move immediately for personal reasons. A new job or divorce might overrule, and you'll be forced to enter the market ready or not.
But when time and circumstances are on your side, you may be able to command a higher price or make a quicker sale.
Traditionally, spring is considered prime selling season. This is the time of year when homes 'show' the best, especially in cooler climates. The garden looks great, the weather is nice. Maybe it's spring fever that drives real estate activity during this time. But if the fever gets too high, it can spell trouble. The law of supply and demand can shift if too many properties come onto the market.
Depending on the geographic location, summer and winter are generally the slowest months, although these months often favor the seller in terms of supply. Conversely, fall is busy, but ushers in competition as buyers have more to homes choose from.
An experienced real estate professional can help you time the sale of your home based on factors affecting your region. But given the current real estate market nationwide, the advice will likely revolve around what's best for you personally as well as financially, especially if you live in an area with a glut of homes on the market.
The key question to ask is, 'Why are you selling?' Depending on the answer to these two questions, you can better time your sale.
1. Do you need or want to get the maximum price? And if so, are you willing to keep your home on the market indefinitely?
2. Do you need or want to sell it quickly? If so, are you willing to sacrifice profits or even take a loss?
You'll probably fall somewhere in the middle, hoping for a fairly quick sale at the best possible price.
As you can see, timing a sale is complicated. But with sound advice and a little luck, you'll time it perfectly.