The Great Debate: Spring vs Winter

The question every home owner asks: “Should I list now or wait until the spring?”

Ultimately it comes down to an individual’s own preference and situation, but we’ve compiled a list of the pros and cons of each.

Spring Listings

Pros

  • More Buyers: The nicer weather brings out more buyers who are looking to move and close deals by the end of the summer before the next school year begins.
  • More Leverage: Home owners can be picky, as they typically field multiple offers, which creates bidding wars that lead to higher selling prices.
  • More Curb Appeal: Homes always look nicer in the Spring and the great weather provides opportunity to highlight some additional features like pools, gardens, porches/patios, waterfront housing, and special landscaping features and displays.
  • Accurate comps: As spring turns to summer, agents have more data from the numerous transactions to provide more accurate comps.
  • More Daylight: Days are longer extending the hours to show a listing.

Cons

  • More Competition: Because of the many aforementioned pros to doing so, many people wait to list until the spring, which means less exposure for your home.
  • New Constructions: This is the time of year when new constructions are going up which increases competition and may lower the appeal of your home.
  • Foreclosures: The spring market tends to bring with it many foreclosures which negatively impacts the value of your home.
  • Picky Buyers: Because of the number of homes available, buyers tend to be very picky during these months.
  • Less Serious Buyers: Not all buyers are serious so don’t let the open house turnout fool you!
  • Less Favorable Comps: A slow winter provides few favorable comps for people listing at the beginning of the spring.
  • Longer Transactions: Because so many homes are sold, attorneys, inspectors, and mortgage companies are all very busy, which can lead to a lengthy transaction.

 

Winter Listings

Pros

  • Less Competition: Less homes on the market translates into more exposure and greater potential for yours getting sold.
  • More Serious Buyers: Winter conditions deter passive buyers and nosy neighbors, so while turnouts may be less, they are quality buyers.
  • Relocation: January is the most common month for people to change jobs or get relocated. That being said, there is an urgency to find a home and move in before the spring.
  • Neighborhood: If done correctly, curb appeal still exists and the holidays provide a great opportunity for potential buyers to get a feel for the neighborhood and picture what living there will be like.
  • Great Agents: These agents will be able to provide advice and tips for staging your home and drawing in buyers during the holidays. Any agent can bring in prospective buyers during the summer, so this season separates the good from the average.
  • Quicker Transactions: Again because less transactions take place, mortgage lenders attorneys, and inspectors have quicker response and turnaround times which translates to quicker sales with less stress.

Cons

  • Fewer Offers: Fewer offers means less leverage for the seller and few if any bidding wars.
  • Lower Prices: The lack of offers and bidding wars means sellers are willing to accept less for their homes.
  • Inclement Weather: Winter weather can be very harsh making people less motivated to go out and look at homes.
  • Less Curb Appeal: Bad weather also masks some of the additional external features your home has to offer.
  • Less Daylight: Less daylight results in less showings and the ones that do take place occur at night time in many cases and it’s hard to appreciate a home when it’s hard to see its beauty.

 

Written By: Anthony Veltri
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