Traditionally, everyone tends to think of spring as the best time to sell a house. And while the spring market is a hopping one, there are some very compelling reasons to consider selling in the winter months.
According to a study by Redfin, the numbers show winter as not only a good time, but the best time to sell your home. Their study concluded that houses listed between December and March sold faster and for more money than any other time of year. Specifically, their data shows that homes listed in winter are 9% more likely to sell and at 1.2% higher percentage points relative to listing price. There are a few very good reasons for this.
First, inventory is lower in the winter so home sellers have less competition than they do in the other seasons. At this time of year, my buyers start to wonder if the online search I’ve created for them is broken, as they aren’t seeing homes in their inbox nearly as much as they did in the fall. Unfortunately for the buyer, there just aren’t enough homes listed at this time of year. That’s not good for the buyer… but for the right seller it can be a perfect situation.
In order to sell anything, your product needs visibility. In home sales, that means we want to make it stand out among the crowd. If the crowd is very small, it stands out automatically. So as long as your house looks great and it’s priced well, it will get attention. Which brings me to the second reason selling in winter works: Buyers are serious!
I don’t know anyone who goes out looking at open houses “just for fun” in the winter. In the spring, summer and fall? Yep. People do that. But in winter, the buyers that are looking are serious buyers who are prepared to buy and close on a house ASAP. They are usually moving because they need to. This is exactly what a seller wants.
And lastly, price. If you price your property in the right ballpark, you will not only get interest, you will likely get more than one offer, which gives you the opportunity to take the terms that work best for you. Whether that’s the highest price or the best closing date. Multiple offers give you a better chance of getting what you want and closing in a timely fashion. Multiple offers are never guaranteed, but in the winter, supply and demand plays an even greater role than at other times of the year. Which is why the homes sold in winter tend to sell for a higher percentage of list price than they do in the other seasons.
So why wouldn’t you sell in winter? Well, there are a few reasons I can think of. Maybe you don’t have a flexible plan on where to move to if you sell your house quickly. Or maybe you have repairs you want to make and need time. Or maybe you’re selling Great Aunt Ida’s estate and she was an unapologetic packrat. You may need months to wade through her back issues of Country Living Magazine and her craft closet that has taken over two bedrooms. Those are all good reasons to hold off a little while.
But if you do have flexibility and you want to get top dollar for your home, this just might be the perfect time to list your house! Don’t wait. Contact your Realtor today!
(And if you’re in the Buffalo area, by Realtor, I mean me…unless, of course, you’re already working exclusively with someone else. And if you’re not in the Buffalo area, I can still help! I have a huge referral network that I’d be happy to use to find you a great agent in your area. Click here to contact me.)