Most of us know that "Spring" is often considered the best time of the year to sell a house. However, this isn't always true. It's hard to qualify any specific time of year as THE best time to sell, but Spring probably gets ranked the highest because it's when more people try to sell their homes.
Listing your house well ahead of the official start to the spring market could be the most strategic thing you do in any market, but even more so given the current market conditions.
Here are 7 more reasons you should seriously consider listing your house in January 2023:
2. Spring Market "Unofficially" Begins in January
When you think about defining when the spring market begins, you probably think of March, April, and May. You wouldn't lump January into the mix of months to describe the spring market UNLESS you're in the real estate business.
The truth is, most agents see a lot of activity from buyers starting after the New Year. March comes pretty quickly, so those who want to get a head start on the selling game and buyers who want to get into their new home by Spring start looking in January.
3. Less Competition
Homeowners who list their house in January capitalize on less competition from other sellers who are waiting for spring. Since the pandemic, this didn't matter quite as much because there wasn't enough houses for sale to keep up with buyers who were looking.
But, the market is shifting- and there are fewer buyers competing for more listings in many areas. Putting your house on the market before the influx of spring sellers add to the number of choices buyers have & that might be a wise move.
4. Capitalize on Higher Prices
According to this Forbes article, home prices are still 6% higher than they were last year, when prices hit historical highs. There's a lot of talk about real estate prices coming down depending upon what happens with mortgage rates moving forward. Getting in the game while the prices haven't taken a dive off a cliff is a smart move.
5. The yo-yo of Mortgage Rates
You’re probably well aware of the fact that interest rates skyrocketed from being historically low for years, to over 7% in October of 2022. While they certainly aren’t back down below 3% like they were in 2021, they’ve recently come down to around 6%, which has some buyers breathing a sigh of relief and trying to buy before they go up again.
That said, rates have a tendency to change quickly and often, so it’s hard to bank on lower rates being an enticement for buyers. But if they’re relatively lower than they have been, it’s something you don’t want to overlook.
6. 'Tis the Season
Many buyers take time off from searching during the holiday's and there's often pent up demand by the time January rolls around. Buyers are anxious and ready to start their search again and finding new options on the market is definitely a positive.
7. Serious Buyers
When the official spring season starts, there are typically more active buyers, but that doesn't mean they are all serious buyers. Lookie-loos come out in full force when the weather is nice. Buyers looking at houses in January tend to be highly motivated to buy a house and not just walk through one like they are on an HGTV show.
8. Shorter Days
Most people prefer to see a house while the sun is out, listing in January increases your odds of having less buyers coming through in the early evenings when you'd prefer to come home and relax.
As the days go by, they also get longer. More sunlight later in the day, as seen during the official spring season, means more buyers wanting to see your house in the evening.