Predicting the Best Time to Buy or Sell Your Home

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While you can’t see into the future, you can still make an informed decision when it comes to buying or selling your home. Buying or selling a home at the best time is more difficult that it may sound. Many usually take these actions because of a life event or financial issues. The economy and real estate forecasts tend to be secondary considerations. Both home buyers and and sellers often ask the question, “When is the best time to buy or sell?” Here are a few helpful tips to keep in mind when timing home purchase or sale.

Every Market is Unique

Compared to 20 years ago, there’s no longer one national real estate market or forecast. And while the 24/7 national news outlets discuss stories of hot real estate markets with multiple offers and quickly rising prices, this doesn’t necessary mean that is happening in your neighborhood. Real estate activity usually varies widely even within the same county. While one town may see record-breaking activity, another town 10 miles away may have a glut of inventory.

If you are hoping to purchase or sell, be sure to dig deeper, search around and get as much local information as possible. Also, make sure to meet with a good local agent early and often to ensure that you stay informed about shifts in the market.

Interest Rates Can Fluctuate

The majority of individuals need a mortgage to purchase a home, and long-term interest rates are a crucial factor. We’ve been living with historically low mortgage rates for many years, but, while we might currently be living in a time of three- or four-percent rates, remember that in the 1980s rates were 12 percent or higher.

It is not unusual for home buyers to get off the sidelines and into the real estate market when they hear news of the Federal Reserve raising interest rates. Would-be home buyers often turn into active customers when rates do start to creep back up again (and they eventually will).

Changing Seasons

Spring is usually the big real estate selling season. Flowers bloom, the grass is green, pools are open and homes shine in their best possible light. Many parents with children of school age also wanted to purchase in the spring or summer so the kids could start a new school in the fall.

The spring is a strong selling season, but home buyers today are searching online and looking on their phones every day, no matter the season, and transactions happen from New Year’s Day to Christmas Eve.

If you are looking to sell your home but aren’t in any rush, you can consider doing so at a traditionally “off” time. There will be fewer homes for sale, resulting in much less competition.

You shouldn’t base selling your home solely on antiquated assumptions about seasons, though. It’s more crucial that you show your home in its best possible condition and choose the right list price. If your home is priced right and shows well, it will sell in no time.

Money Isn’t Everything

We would see every renter who has money saved up and a solid job getting in the market if a real estate purchase were purely financial. But there are practical and emotional issues to take into consideration, including not making sense to put down 20 percent and take on a mortgage if their job with an hour commute isn’t steady, or their marriage is on the rocks or their aging parents live across the country.

Renting and keeping with the status quo is completely acceptable if there is any uncertainty in your future. These buyers are free to shop and learn the market, but they may not make a move. Many buyers have been hesitant to get back into the real estate market since the financial crisis.

We’ve seen a comeback in many parts of the country in more recent years, though. Some markets are better than others. If you believe buying a home is in your future, do your research. Be sure to take your time and get your ducks in a row before starting to feel the market. Just remember nobody can predict when the right house will come along, and you can’t time a real estate market.


Our team here at DBL Real Estate is readily available to assist you with any of your real estate needs or questions you may have! Contact us with the link below for more information!

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