It is the unofficial end of summer. Who is buying homes after Labor Day? Do you have to drop the price of your home?
The short answer is “it all depends”. There are absolutely fewer buyers after Labor Day, but there are also fewer sellers. As with all commerce, it depends on supply and demand.
I have sold real estate for 30 years. I have found that, all other things being equal, homes take longer to sell, but actually sell for equal or higher prices than the spring/summer markets.
The reason for the higher prices is that fall and winter buyers are typically forced to move, due to job or life change. Therefore they are in an urgent need for a home, and the inventory of available homes is much lower. When they find the home they want, and the price is within market, they are buying it.
To sell your home in the fall or winter months, there are three very important points to remember.
First, sellers must keep their homes in top condition. The fall / winter buyers are in a hurry, and do not want a home that needs work. Sellers must keep up on all repairs, and keep the home looking fresh and bright. This is especially true as the days get shorter, and it is often dark when prospective buyers are home shopping.
Second, be willing to accommodate every showing. There are no “tire kickers” in the fall / winter months. Every buyer is a serious buyer. If you deny a showing, the buyers may very likely buy another home without even looking at yours.
Third, be prepared to be flexible on your closing date. The reason the buyer is paying top price is that they need a home. By not accommodating their timing, you could be costing yourself a good contract.
If sellers follow these rules, the fall / winter months are great times to sell your home.
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