So, When is Actually the Best Time to List a Home?
For some people, the best time to list a home is whatever time is most feasible for that person. Most sellers do not get to choose when exactly to list their home because in many cases, they don’t have a choice. Whether it’s a new job, a baby on the way, a death in the family, or the desperate need to get rid of the house, there are countless reasons as to why someone needs to list their home sooner than later.
All that being said, if you find that your listing not getting interested buyers, then the season might be to blame. And, if there is any flexibility with time, then agents should talk with their clients about using that time to their advantage.
Because, while there are many factors at play, when you list a home can make all the difference.
Listing in Spring Sees the Best Results
Most people are aware that spring is a good time to list. The weather, while sometimes surprising, is usually quite decent and predictable across many regions of the United States. According to HomeLight, over 50% of agents surveyed said that March, April, and May were the best months to sell a home.
But, wouldn’t this only be true of local markets that experience all four seasons? In areas where the weather is spring-like all year round, or in areas that experience undesirable weather in the spring, there are other times that agents say are better to sell.
For instance, in Durham, North Carolina, the best time to list is in December, and in Alexandria, Virginia, the best time to sell is in November. No question a major reason for this is because these cities suffer from high temperatures and brutal humidity from spring through fall. And, in San Diego, there’s no month where listings sell that much faster than other months, likely because it’s a desirable market and the weather is always rather pleasant.
Despite all this, spring still happens to be the most popular time to list a home across the United States, with January consistently being the worst month to list a home overall.
In Spring, May is the Best Month to List
So, if spring is the best time to list overall, which month in spring is the very best? Again, it all depends on your local market, but according to Zillow, the first half of May has been the best time to list a home year after year. Those who list their home within these two weeks, “Have sold for more money and more quickly than the average listing throughout the year.”
On a broader scale, Zillow also says that there is a “magic two-week window” when homes sell best, and this two week window falls between the second half of March and the first half of June. This was true of 29 out of 35 of the largest markets in the United States. The remainder of those markets, including Charlotte, Las Vegas, and Miami, did better the first half of July, which is interesting if you know the climate in these areas, but the facts nonetheless.
Fall is a Runner Up
Some sellers simply won’t be able to sell in spring, as much as they’d like to. But, there are other seasons that have good results too. After spring, fall is the best time to list, according to The Balance. Although most people would think that summer would do quite well for selling, it turns out that potential buyers want to avoid using their vacation time to deal with such a major stress. After Labor Day and before the snow comes raging down could, therefore, be another great time to list.
List on Friday at Midnight
Some people think that buying a flight on a Tuesday will get you the cheapest flight, and others think that’s not true at all. And, if you tried to apply that logic to the housing industry without looking at real data, then you won’t have much luck. In fact, Tuesdays are not great days at all in real estate.
There is a lot of data out there that suggests the best day of the week to sell a house. According to Zillow, homes that listed on their website on Saturdays were getting more views than others. However, just because a home got viewed more didn’t necessarily mean it sold faster and at a higher price. After all, many people like to spend their weekends just daydreaming about a home, but nothing more.
On the contrary, The Balance stated that weekends were actually the worst time of the week to list a home, and Thursdays are usually when Realtors take off. Mondays are too dull, and Tuesdays and Wednesdays are too busy. That leaves Friday, at 12:01 AM, as the best time to list a home.
The Bottom Line
Based on all of this information, the best time to list a home would be on a Friday morning at midnight, sometime between the end of March and the beginning of June. But, it’s important to remember that this is generalized, and while it is true of a majority of the largest markets in the United States, it’s not true of them all. To get the most accurate information about the best time to list, clients should talk to their prospective agents, and agents should consistently gather data to support their findings as to when is the best time for someone to list in that area.
At the end of the day, advising your client about the best time to list their home, will ensure that they’re happy and that you will get your money that much sooner.