Historically most homeowners, at the advice of their Realtors®, have held their homes off the market until the spring when new listings peak and buyer activity starts to increase. More recent experience and holiday selling seasons are showing some surprising benefits for homeowners who decide to market their homes during this time of year. In this article I’ll explain what those benefits are and why now might be the right time to sell your home.
1. HOLIDAY BUYERS ARE MORE SERIOUS
The people that come through your home during the holidays are serious buyers. The reason we know that is because they would be out shopping for the holidays, or going to holiday parties, or preparing family dinners if they didn’t intend on purchasing a home that day. By listing your home for sale during the holidays, you can avoid unnecessary interruptions from nosy neighbors or buyers surveying the market for purchases several months down the road.
2. SERIOUS BUYERS HAVE FEWER HOUSES TO CONSIDER
Less competition means more money for you. When you’re competing against several different homes on the market, buyers will compare your home and ultimately use those listings as leverage to gain a better price. When a serious buyer identifies your property and there are no competing homes in your area, as a seller you have the leverage to demand a price at the top of the range for your neighborhood without fear of losing the buyer to another seller.
3. HOUSES SHOW BETTER WHEN DECORATED FOR THE HOLIDAYS
Think about the last time you walked into a store and it had sparkling lights, decorated trees, jingle bells ringing and holiday aromas burning.
Here’s an example:
Kidding aside, the feelings of joy, gratitude and excitement that big retailers induce to sell goods and services are the same feelings that homebuyers will experience when they walk into a properly staged home during the holidays. This presents a unique opportunity to showcase your homes best features and show buyers what it would fell like to celebrate their own holiday in that space.
4. CORPORATE RELOCATIONS PEAK DURING DECEMBER
Corporations and businesses who are expanding or moving, typically conduct employee relocations during the holiday months when business is slower. Corporate relocations are usually coupled with moving assistance, downpayment assistance and financing incentives so these buyers have more flexibility in negotiations than typical buyers would in your market.
5. SOME BUYERS MUST BUY BEFORE THE END OF THE YEAR FOR TAX REASONS
These buyers not only need to buy before the end of the year but they also need to Closebefore the end of the year. This is a great opportunity to help a buying family save money and experience a benefit while at the same time your family gets to start the New Year in a new home.
6. YOU CAN SELL NOW AND USE A DELAYED OCCUPANCY AGREEMENT
Moving during the holidays might not sound great for your family and this keeps a lot of those other sellers from coming on the market this time of year. What they don’t realize is you can sell your home during the holidays and use a delayed occupancy agreement to postpone your move until after things settle down. This lets you capture the benefits of lower competition and tax purchase incentives without having to disrupt any plans you have to enjoy the season at home.
7. BECOME A NON-CONTINGENT BUYER
By selling now, you may have an opportunity to be a non-contingent buyer during the spring when more houses are on the market for less money. This will allow you to sell high and buy low within the span of a few months. In a spring market where you’re likely competing with several other buyers, you’ll stand out as the strongest buyer available with proceeds in the bank, a pre-approved loan, fast occupancy date and non-continent offer.
DOES A HOLIDAY LISTING MAKE SENSE FOR YOU?
The common practice of waiting until the spring to sell your home might be misguided for a lot of sellers. Every family and local neighborhood market is different, and a professional listing agent can help you evaluate all the factors that determine the right time to sell your home.
If you’re thinking about selling your home this holiday season, start the conversation with us today by requesting a Free Home Equity Report Here.