As fall approaches, many home owners find themselves in situations where they suddenly need to move or simply want to get into their next home faster. With spring and summer in rear view, they worry they’ve missed their opportunity. Life happens and it’s not always timed with prime selling season. Don’t worry, homes are sold 365 days a year. While there are usually fewer buyers in the fall than in spring and summer, you only need one buyer to make a sale. You may be surprised to learn about some upsides from being a home seller this season.
1. Fall buyers tend to be more motivated buyers. People in no hurry to move who searched in the spring or summer often stop looking as fall approaches. But the most serious buyers are going on showings all year round. Whether they have to move or really want to move, they’re dedicated to their search. Seasons don’t stop them.
2. There’s less selling competition in the fall. Most sellers like to sell in spring and summer because of the rush of potential buyers. The downside is that they find a lot more selling competition in their own neighborhoods. If you’re selling in the fall, you’re not likely to have as much competition from the surrounding neighborhood. The supply and demand advantage is yours. For the serious buyer on an urgent timeline to move, there’s less inventory available. Statistically they are more likely to purchase and agree on a higher price.
3. Closings are likely to happen faster. Because there are not as many transactions happening as in spring and summer, third parties such as lenders, title companies, and inspectors aren’t as slammed with client transactions. Delays caused by any of these necessary parties in a home sale can be stressful and frustrating. With the increased availability of these parties, you have a better shot at timely closings.
4. Buyers want to act before mortgage rates increase even more. We’ve seen mortgage rates rise well into the 6% range recently. While the increase has locked out a segment of potential buyers already, others are still able to afford a home and want to act before spring in case rates continue to climb.
5. The fall is a great time to show off an attractive neighborhood. This is a great season for buyers to enjoy seeing colorful mums, pumpkins, and trees turning bright shades of yellow, red, and orange. Many buyers are attracted to community festivity. If you’re neighborhood doesn’t fit this description, there’s no reason why you can’t make your home pop out among the others with your own fall décor. Imagine an open house event serving pumpkin spiced lattes.
If you’re serious about fall home selling, pay close attention to pricing your home right. While this is true for all seasons, overpricing can hurt you even more in the fall since there are fewer buyers. You want to take advantage of that short supply and high demand situation within the fair market value price range. Even with low inventory available to them, buyers often turn away from sellers who’ve priced themselves off the charts. In the long run you’ll end up slashing your price and buyers will want to then negotiate down further if your home has sat on the market for weeks.
Real Estate Term of the Week
Settlement: A term for the close of a real estate transaction. Settlement occurs when the buyers, sellers, and their agents sign the closing documents of a transaction. Settlement or closing procedures vary by location.