When is the Best Season to Sell Your Home?

Keep reading to discover the best season for you to sell your home.
Graphic Copyright : Irina Merzliakova / 123rf.com

In Western North Carolina, we’re no strangers to the individual personalities of all four seasons. Our mountains take on the spirit of the season: blooming in the spring, thriving in the summer, erupting in color during autumn, and then settling into the foggy winter mornings and (most years) dusted with snow. Local businesses and industries pulse within this annual cycle of the seasons. And recreation shifts with the temperature, too. 

That begs the question, if so much in WNC changes with the seasons, does the real estate market change, too? When is the best season to sell a home?

The answer to the first question is, yes, of course! The answer to the second is a little more complicated. Keep reading to discover the best season for you to sell your home.

Selling Your House in the Winter

Winter is a complicated season for many industries, real estate included. Consider the way retail sales change in the weeks leading up to Christmas and New Year’s Day versus the winter weeks after. While real estate doesn’t follow that pattern per se, it is clearly impacted by the holidays. Many buyers who did not find a home in the fall will stop looking during the holidays when other activities become more important. On the other hand, pending sales become more urgent, as buyers who have homes under contract want to finalize the purchase and be in the house in time for Christmas morning. 

PROS of Selling Your House in the Winter:

  • Buyers who remain in the market are more serious and may be eager to buy. Their demand for fresh listings is strong, and because of the holidays, they have more time to look.
  • There is less competition among sellers because of the low inventory.
  • If winter-readiness is a selling point of your property, this is the time to show it off.
  • After New Year’s, buyers may want to take advantage of the new tax year (or last year’s year-end bonuses and payouts) by buying quickly.
  • Corporate relocation is most popular in January and February, so it’s a great time to catch those people relocating to the area.

CONS of Selling Your House in the Winter:

  • Weather is at its worst during winter, and foot traffic is lower than in warmer months.
  • Houses don’t tend to look as nice in photos or to buyers driving by. If your landscaping is a big selling point, it may be better to wait until spring.
  • Many buyers have temporarily stopped looking during the holidays. Buyers who are still looking can make enjoying the holidays in your home more difficult for you.
  • Some buyers assume that since the market is slower, you may be prepared to sell for less. Expect low-ball offers. 
  • Financing can be delayed by the holidays. Be prepared to build extra days into your closing.

Ready to sell your house this winter? Read more: 

Selling Your House in the Spring

Like many of our native plants, the housing market blooms in the spring. After long, cold winter days cooped inside, many buyers are ready to get out of their homes—permanently! Spring is a great time to photograph your home. And if your home is ready to compete with other fresh listings, it can be the optimum time to attract a buyer. However, if you’re not ready to list it as soon as the daffodils open their blooms, it’s a good idea to wait—at least a few weeks. Zillow research indicates that homes listed in the first half of May sell around 18.5 days faster and for 1% more. Spend your early days of spring preparing your home for sale, and hit the ground running when it hits the market.

PROS of Selling Your House in the Spring:

  • The largest number of buyers are looking for homes during the spring. With warmer weather and longer days, they are eager to get out and explore the market.
  • More buyers means more potential offers. Healthy competition could lead to a larger purchase price for your home. (Homes sold in May and June turn the highest profits for sellers.)
  • Some buyers will want to time their move with the school season. Finding your home in the spring means they can close in time for summer break.
  • Good curb appeal is more evident in the spring.
  • If you are moving up, this is a great time to sell high and quickly. That leaves you in a good position to find a new home of your own while there are many listings available.

CONS of Selling Your House in the Spring:

  • If winter was hard on your home, you may not be ready to list in the spring. If you’re counting on a good purchase price, you may need to wait until any repairs are complete.
  • More homes hitting the market means more competition. If your home is not priced right, it will be easier for buyers to overlook your listing.
  • A busier real estate season means busier real estate professionals. Your agent, property photographer, or any service professionals will have a full plate. You’ll need to budget additional time for property photos or home repairs.
  • If you are also buying a new home, you will experience more competition in the spring. That could make timing your move more challenging, especially if you’re working around school schedules, too.
  • Spring is a great season for home renovations. If your neighbors take on major renovations or have spring events (like graduation parties), that may make parking and tours more difficult for your buyers.

Ready to sell your house this spring? Read more: 

Selling Your House in the Summer

Summer may seem like the ideal time to sell a home, but for many it’s a challenge. Not only are buyers distracted by summer vacations, watching the kids, and summer holiday activities, but so are you. However, many buyers who are in the market are more motivated to purchase and close before school begins back. 

Don’t discount the summer season completely, though. Because of the busy spring selling season, June is a top month for home closings. And according to recent data from ATTOM Data Solutions, those who sold homes in the summer had more success selling their home quickly and for their desired price. According to the study, June and August are the best months of the year for home sales.

PROS of Selling Your House in the Summer:

  • Curb appeal is at its peak in summer months. If you have great outdoor entertainment features, like a swimming pool or back patio, this is the time to show them off.
  • Daylight is at its maximum, so buyers are more likely to come out and stay longer at your home. It also gives you more time to work on any minor updates or renovations.
  • Vacation time makes it easier for buyers to visit from out of town. Taking vacation time of your own can also make it easier for you to focus on your home sale.
  • There is more available data from spring home sales to help you price your home competitively. 
  • Buyers who want to be in a new home before the next school year will be more motivated to make a good offer.

CONS of Selling Your House in the Summer:

  • Buyers are distracted by vacations and summer holidays. Foot traffic is slower, and there is less competition driving offers on your home.
  • Depending on the weather, good curb appeal can be difficult to maintain. It’s important to keep plants watered in drought and keep the lawn mowed if it’s a soggy season.
  • Keeping your home properly cooled and free from humidity can be challenging (and more expensive) with people regularly cycling through your space.
  • Professionals are busy, and they take vacations, too. You may end up paying a premium for landscapers, contractors, or other service professionals.
  • If you have kids at home for the summer, it could be more difficult to keep indoor and outdoor spaces show-ready.

Ready to sell your house this summer? Read more: 

Selling Your House in the Fall

Fall in the mountains is a magical time of year! Your curb appeal takes on vibrant colors that look great in listing photos. And there is a peak number of out-of-towners wandering around who may be interested in relocating. Even so, fall can be a tricky time for home sellers. Because of the falling daylight and impending holidays, it’s important to work on an accelerated timeline to take property photos and get your home on the market. If you’re not prepared to move quickly and market your home creatively, it could end up lingering for sale well past the holidays. On the plus side, it may be easier to schedule an service professionals you need during this time, with the exception of HVAC technicians.

PROS of Selling Your House in the Fall:

  • Fall colors look spectacular in property photos! It’s a good way to stand out from the competition and make your listing look fresh and timely.
  • In early fall, there is still plenty of daylight for after-work showings.
  • Buyers who have been in the market since the spring are highly motivated to find and close on a home before the holidays.
  • More than half of buyers don’t have children under 18, so there is still plenty of traffic even after school begins. 
  • The schedules of service professionals in many industries slow down in the fall, so you may save money on any updates or repairs needed.

CONS of Selling Your House in the Fall:

  • Colder, wetter weather and busier schedules mean fewer serious buyers are in the market.
  • Less competition means you’re less likely to find buyers bidding against each other for your home. You could see both lower offers and more demands from buyers who know you want to sell before the end of the year.
  • Homeowners nationwide who sold their houses during October and December report the lowest seller premiums.
  • Curb appeal can be tricky if your property has a lot of trees. It’s important to keep slippery leaves off walkways and porches and to replace dying plants with hardier cold-weather varieties to keep your home looking fresh.
  • If your home stays on the market into the spring, listing photos with fall colors will make it obvious that it’s not a fresh listing.

Ready to sell your house this fall? Read more: 

So, When is the Best Time to Sell Your Home?

There are pros and cons to selling your home each season. Ultimately, the best time to sell your home depends on you. So, if you know when you need to have your home sold, work backwards and determine your timeline from that. 

Your Beverly-Hanks agent will be able to help you understand what the average time to close is in your neighborhood. They will also be able to help you prepare your home for the market and will be by your side during the entire home sale process—regardless of the season. 

All real estate is local. In order to make confident real estate decisions, it’s important to have timely and neighborhood-specific information. Contact us today to speak with a Beverly-Hanks real estate agent about selling your home in Western North Carolina.

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