Four Seasons Of Selling Your Home In Massachusetts: Pros & Cons of Each
There are some absolute truths that can lead to a positive real estate experience – buy low, sell high; find an agent who's willing to go the extra mile; read the fine print! – and then there are the things "everyone knows" – like: Spring's the best time to put your house on the market. (That's especially something "everyone knows" wherever the winter months could include cold, ice, and snow.)
But the absolute truth is, there are some advantages to selling in every season. Here's a quick look at making the most of selling at any time of year.
Spring: Go With The Flow
"Everyone knows…" High competition.
Pro: Tax returns, heavy traffic, peak curb appeal.
Many happy returns. If you're fortunate enough to get a check back from Uncle Sam, you could have more cash available to paint, make repairs, hire a staging pro, and otherwise get your home looking its best.
If you list it, they will come. With its warmer days, fresh greenery, and killer curb appeal – not to mention the end of the school year approaching and just the general optimism that spring in New England delivers – spring is traditionally top time to hit the market. Buyers are out in force. You'll have more eyes on your home now than in any other season. If you're confident that it stands up to the competition and/or is priced to move, go for it.
Summer: The Heat Is On
"Everyone knows…" : (in)convenience (vacations, etc.); weather (houses w/out central air are hottt; have a great cooling system or be creative scheduling showings)
Summer Pro: Buyers w/kids are motivated; good curb appeal
Fall: Time To Settle Down
Fall Pro: have you seen fall in new England? lower competition; cozy time of year; people want to be settled before holidays and weather.
Fall Con: low(er) traffic
Winter: Be The Big Fish
"Everyone knows…" Less traffic, the inconvenience of holidays, weather.
Pros: Low competition, highly motivated buyers, faster closings.
Less competition makes you a hot commodity. Generally, fewer homes are listed in winter. Sellers might consider that children are mid school year, the holidays are smack in the middle of it, the weather can be unpredictable, and spring – the hottest home-selling time of year – is just around the corner. Why not wait? they ask. Here's a better question: Why wait until the market is crowded with options? With a winter listing, you're a big fish in a much smaller pond.
Winter house hunters mean business. That's not to say house hunters the rest of the year are just out for test drives, but think of it this way: Would you be shopping for a home in the cold and/or dark if you didn't have a compelling reason? Winter buyers tend to be motivated, leading to faster decisions.
It's closing time. Speaking of faster decisions, buyers aren't the only ones making them. Since this is the "slow" time of year, your buyer's mortgage broker won't have nearly as much on their plate as they will in June, potentially cutting your time-to-close significantly.
What are you waiting for? Get selling.