There May Be No Better Time to Sell a Home Than Now, According to realtor.com

In today’s market where homes are selling fast, often above asking and even sight unseen, it may not seem like there is actually a “best” time to list your house for sale.

However, earlier in the year is generally better, and according to national market trends, sellers who list their home this week, April 18-24, should see more buyer interest, less competition from other sellers, a faster sale and a higher listing price, according to realtor.com ‘s 2021 Best Time to List analysis released today.

To determine the optimum time to list, realtor.com looked at competition from other sellers, median listing prices, time it takes to sell, likelihood of price reductions and interest from buyers measured by views per property on realtor.com.

Because of COVID’s disruption to the market in 2020, the analysis included 2018-2019 listing data.

“Unlike 2020 when COVID upended the spring home-buying season and pushed buyer interest to later in the year, this year’s housing market is following more typical seasonal trends,” said realtor.com Chief Economist Danielle Hale.

What makes the week of April 18 stand out?

The short answer is it’s the optimal time for high prices, robust buyer demand, low competition from other sellers and a quick home sale.

Higher price: Homes listed next week typically sell for 2% higher than the average week and 10.4% higher than the start of the year. If 2021 follows the typical seasonal trend, a median priced home listed next week could sell for $7,500 above the average week and $36,000 more than the start of the year.

Strong buyer demand: Homes listed this week typically get 11% more views on realtor.com® than the average week throughout the year.

Less competition: Homeowners who listed during this week in 2018 and 2019 saw 5% fewer sellers on the market compared to the average week throughout the year.

Faster sale: Historically, homes listed during this week sold 14.1% faster than the average week. In 2021 terms, this would translate to selling in just 59 days, eight days faster than homes listed in other weeks, on average.

In addition to the historical data, homeowners wondering whether now is the right time to sell, may want to consider some potential housing market shifts on the horizon that could lessen their current advantage. 

Rising mortgage rates, which realtor.com is forecasting will reach 3.4% by the end of the year, could dampen buyer demand later in the home-buying season.

Additionally, improved vaccination rates will also likely bring more sellers back to the market, adding more inventory to the mix and increasing competition for sellers.

“It’s a seller’s market right now, but you still need to ensure your home makes a great first impression, especially if you want to get the best price for your place,” said Rachel Stults, deputy editor for realtor.com. “The key is zeroing in on what buyers want. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, buyers are looking for more space — or flexible space they can transform into what they need. Home offices and lush outdoor spaces also have become extremely important. If you have these things, make sure you highlight them.

“It’s also crucial to make sure your home is move-in ready: Do repairs and upgrades now, before you put your home on the market. Transform your space into something turnkey, because buyers don’t want to wait to move in,” she added.

Find out more at realtor.com

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