When Is the Right Time to Sell?
Times are changing and you’re thinking about moving the family into a new home. But before you start searching for your next dream home, you’ll need to figure out when you’re going to sell your existing home. The decision is a complex one, especially considering the unpredictable economic environment you’re living in. And while there’s no magic formula for determining the best time to sell a home, there are several factors you should consider.
The wrong time to sell
In spite of our relatively mild weather, East Bay markets have distinct seasonal trends. This likely won’t come as a big surprise: you should avoid selling your home during the winter holiday season. Tensions run high during the holidays and budgets run low. The result? No one’s really itching to buy, and offers that do come in are often lower. So as a general rule of thumb, avoid the months of December and January when selling a home. With the fast turnarounds we see in the Bay area, choosing the right window of time for your home and neighborhood can really affect your result. Avoid holiday weekends for the first two weeks it's on the market. Know the school schedule for your area. As your agent, I'm looking at the calendar closely to make recommendations to ensure you get the most eyes on your home when it first hits the market.
The best season for selling
Conventional wisdom dictates that spring is the best time to sell a home. The holidays have past, weather is getting better and people are ready to unbundle and get out into the world. Gardens and other outdoor spaces tend to look their best. And while spring is the season that sees the largest number of new buyers starting to search, it’s also the season when inventories are highest. This means lots of competition, so if you’re going to sell in spring, you really need to get your property to stand out with effective marketing and staging. Hiring your agent early and letting them guide you through the prep process will help you pick the right time and achieve the best results.
2020 will be unique
There are some changing trends emerging, and 2020 is an election year, which always affects the fall market. With the strangest and most nerve-wracking election of our lifetime ahead of us, expect buyers to be a little more distracted in the fall. Number of offers are typically fewer in the fall of the election year, though not necessarily lower. Upgraded homes will continue to sell for a premium all year. Interest rates are predicted to begin to rise. How fast will determine the overall affect, but when they begin to move, buyers will be able to afford a little less and will likely encounter increased competition as it spurs the market. Buyers that have been sitting on the fence will jump in at that point and competition increases. How this timing plays out with the election cycle will make for some unknowns, and agents and sellers should expect to adjust to market conditions strategically as the year unfolds. It will NOT be a one size fits all homes year for strategies, and nuances will matter.