Spring is when most homes come to market. These months offer better home prices for buyers and more space to negotiate with the seller. On the other hand, the worst time to buy a home is during the spring to early summer season, when home inventory is high, causing demand and home prices to rise. In addition to seasonality, other economic factors, such as mortgage rates, can also affect your ability to buy a home.
The spring months are often considered the best month to sell a home. In fact, across the country, the first two weeks of May tend to be the busiest and most lucrative time for sellers. Often, homeowners accidentally choose the slowest month to sell homes and get stuck with all that entails. But even in a more typical market, timing is everything, and this is particularly true when selling a home.
During these quieter months, buyer interest tends to decline and there may be opportunities to make an offer on a home in a less competitive situation than during the busiest months. Based on seasonal trends, the best time to buy a home is from October to February due to low demand due to the holiday season. From winter to spring, there are several months throughout the year that usually have sales conditions that are not ideal. The final consensus on the fall months is that the lack of competition, along with the upcoming holidays and fickle weather, make September through November a difficult time of year to sell a home.
The good news about the summer months is that families often feel the urge to shop and move while children are out of school. Since home prices are higher during this period and also sell above the sale price, buyers are likely to spend much more money than they expected, especially between the months of May and August. Memorial Day and 4th of July holidays, as well as summer vacation plans, tend to reduce the number of announcements during June and July, and these months are generally comparable to February and March. If getting a higher rate for your home is more important than a quick sale, it's a good idea to list it in the spring or summer months.
While there were some unexpected fluctuations due to the COVID-19 pandemic, historically, the best times to buy a home year after year are from October to February. When faced with the dilemma of selling a house in the winter months, most people complain and say, “well, it's a bad time. The worst month of the year to sell a home is December, which coincides with October with a 5.8 percent seller premium, according to ATTOM. While today's real estate market is more competitive than it has been in several years, that competition makes potential buyers better aware of homes.
May is generally a busy month of announcements, as there is an increase in announcements in late spring before a brief cooldown for summer. There are 9 percent fewer homes this shopping season compared to a year ago, so listing them in early May makes you sell your home about 18 days faster and for about 1 percent more than you would otherwise get, according to Zillow.