Many sellers believe that the best time of year to put their home on the market is during the spring and summer. That is and isn't true. There is more inventory available to choose from as a buyer after the holidays wrap up, but this also means more competition for you. Having listings currently on the market, I can tell you that the buyers that are looking right now are either single, married couples no kids, empty nesters looking to downsize or move our of their current area, and families with children under age four. This makes the move easy and less concerning when it comes to switching schools.
People that are out looking right now are serious buyers. The market has stabilized a bit and with the uncertainty of interest rates, some buyers are opting to wait to see what happens in the New Year. We are not seeing the all cash offers that were so prevalent over the last year, so it makes it easier for a buyer who requires financing to finally get a place in the area they desire.
Top 10 Reasons to Sell Your Home During the Holidays
10. REALTORS® don’t work – That may be true with a majority or real estate agents, they have the same mindset as a lot of sellers. They roll up their business for the winter and plan on emerging for the spring buying season. Professional full time REALTORS® however, work throughout the year. Sure they may take a day or two off now and then, but they are focused on providing professional guidance and service every day of the year.
9. The seller must move – Many times a seller can’t imagine going through the ordeal of moving right in the middle of their Christmas vacation – but think about it. The seller still controls the process and can determine what date is acceptable to close escrow and surrender the keys to their home. Besides, if you got a full price plus offer meeting all of your terms, wouldn’t it be nice to get out of your home before the end of the year and start the New Year off right?
8. The seller becomes a non-contingent buyer – Once you sell your home, you’ll be able to write offers on your replacement home as a non-contingent buyer. Being a contingent buyer leaves you as one of the weakest possible buyers and leaves you very little room to negotiate any of the terms. As a non-contingent buyer, you’ll be able to negotiate with confidence on any of the terms that are important to you – including price. You’ve got your end taken care of and money is in the bank ready to close escrow on that move-up home.
7. Buyers have more time to shop – Time off from work and school are not uncommon with many buyers during the holiday season. More time off means more time to shop and getting to know your neighborhood.
6. Potential tax benefits – You’ll have to check with your own professional tax adviser but there just may be some substantial benefit for selling your home now. In the same spirit, there are many buyers in the market for a new home who feel as if they have to close escrow before the end of the year of their own tax planning reasons.
5. Showcase the neighborhood – One of the great advantages for selling real estate during the holiday season is many homes are now decorated and look their absolute best this time of year. Literally, prospective buyers will be able to see your home and neighborhood in a ‘new light.’
4. Nostalgic showcase – It’s very possible that your home has its most nostalgic appeal during this time period. Are there leaves turning color? Do you have pumpkins on the porch and a wreath on the door? So, you may have Christmas lights adoring the exterior of the home and other decorations inside. What will buyers feel like when they see the pine swags on the fireplace mantle and the garland adorned with big red bows cascading down the staircase handrail. If it doesn’t remind them of their own childhood, they’ll be thinking how great it will be for their own children to have a memory of home like this. Nostalgia is big business in America, cash in on in and let your home shine.
3. Never a more serious buyer than a holiday buyer – The first of the year is always a busy time for new jobs to start and those new hires or transfers need to get set up before they start the new job in January. Other buyers are anticipating a large end-of-year bonus that will help with the down payment and moving expenses. Whatever the reason, a Holiday buyer is a serious buyer – not a looky-loo, looking for the fun of it.
2. Less competition – So many sellers pull their home off the market by early November and don’t even want to consider selling again until after Easter when the spring buying season starts. Most home sellers want to wait until we have a HOT market again. That’s when there is the most competition for a good home. By listing and selling your home now, buyers have much less to choose from which means there is much less competition for your home. It’s not uncommon for a fairly priced home in good condition to receive multiple offers this time of the year.
1. People are happy – As a very general observation, most people are at their happiest during the holiday season. Happy people are typically much easier to work with and are more likely to be less competitive when it comes to negotiating a contract. Happy buyers are more prone to feel more at home in a well-appointed home, decorated for the season. Just don’t over do the décor. A nice home evokes a sense of family and holiday-spirit.
Feel free to call us with any questions and we will be happy to provide you with a free market evaluation to tell you what your home is worth. Enjoy the holiday season and spending time with family and friends!