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Selling Your Own Home: What Season Is Best?

Conventional wisdom might tell you that the best times to list your home for sale would be far enough back from the end of summer or the winter holidays so new homeowners can buy and settle in before the school year begins or the calendar turns to the new year. While this may sound wise, buyers actually seek out homes throughout the year. So as you decide the best time of year for selling your own home, use these pros and cons to influence your choice.


During summer months, families may be readying for the next school year or looking for a forever home. Before listing your home for sale at the hottest time of year, remember that families may also be taking extended vacations during this time, and thinking about relaxing rather than breaking in a new home. So while some will be motivated to find a new place in order to get into a particular school district or be more settled before fall, you may also miss out on potential buyers who simply aren’t around at this time.


Autumn is a time of fall leaves and firing up the first blaze in your fire pit or fireplace. It can also be an extraordinarily busy time of year for business people who have major initiatives to pursue during the last fiscal quarter of the year. In addition, families may be super busy with the start of school and the fall sports season. On the flip side, families may well be motivated to be moved in and settled in time to host holiday festivities at their new home.


Winter is a tough time to close on the sale of your home, as buyers are working through holiday costs and may be discouraged by bad weather and shorter days. While it may not be the best time to get your home to closing, it can be a good time to list, so that buyers who are planning ahead for the spring can be enticed by your listing. You may also be able to take advantage of families who are being transferred over the holiday break and are looking to make a quick purchase.


Spring can be a great time to reach prospective buyers who have recovered from the expenses of the holidays and may have a fat income tax return that is ready to be spent on a down payment. Keep in mind, however, that the military and major corporations may be scheduling moves to coincide with summer break to ease pressure on families with school-age children. This means that if your choice for selling your own home is springtime, try to list as early as possible, as it may take a month or two to negotiate price, go through inspections and potential repairs, and then be ready to close on the sale. Historical trends showing spikes in late spring/early summer sales often reflect homes listed far prior.

The jury may be out on the most fortuitous time to list and sell your home, but no matter when you decide, today’s market is pretty hot, due to low inventory and rising interest rates and rental costs. So instead of waiting for what may be a mythical best season, your best bet is don’t wait — list now.

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