The Holidays will be here before you know it. We will all be toasting eggnogs, opening presents, and returning that terrible sweater to the shopping mall before you know it. New Year’s Eve will be a blink of the eye and it’s Hello 2014. So what is a potential strategy for someone looking to sell his or her home in 2014? Here are a few ideas:
1) Wait until around January 15th before putting your home on the market. People have what I call the ‘Holiday Hangover’ for about two weeks after New Year’s Eve. The market will start to pick up again by around mid-January.
2) You need to make a decision if you want to list your home in the middle of winter, or if you want to wait until spring. Seems like a silly question, but let’s take a look at the pros and cons of each strategy. You need to decide if it’s better to be a big fish in a small pond, or a small fish in a big pond. Here is what I mean:
a. If you put your home on the market in the middle of winter, it is when there is the lowest amount of re-sale inventory on the market. It means that your home could be a big fish in a small pond. That also means fewer choices for buyers, so your home could get a lot of showings and a good offer. The downside with this strategy is that there are far fewer eligible buyers in mid-winter than in spring. That could result in fewer showings. Let’s face it, not a lot of people would want to go trekking around in the snow looking at houses. However, if there are buyers out looking at your home in sub-zero temperatures, there is a good chance that they are serious and need to buy.
b. Let’s say that you want to wait until spring when more buyers are in the marketplace, the weather is better, and your home looks great with green grass. This would mean that you will be a small fish in a big pond because re-sale inventory will be at its highest in spring. Buyers will have more choices and that means more buying power. You may or may not get more showings depending on your competition, and you may not get your price for the same reason.
3) So is it a better choice to be a big fish in a small pond, or a small fish in a big pond? That would really depend on how you view the scenario above and on your timeline to sell.
4) As always, I recommend that if your objective is to sell for the highest price in the shortest amount of time, then you only need to consider these three things: 1) Did I price my home correctly right out of the gate? If so, your best chance to sell is in the first 30 days. 2) How does the home show? Will people say “WOW” when they walk in the door? 3) Did you hire an agent with great marketing skills? Remember that #3 is the only part of the equation that we (the Realtor) controls. The seller controls the price and how the home shows.
It’s really not more complicated than the three points I have outlined in #4 above. If anyone tells you that there’s more, then they are not being truthful with you.