It’s Spring, 2018. Are You Planning to Sell Your Home?
As you might suspect, the Winter real estate season (considered to be mid November through late February) is generally a slow time for real estate activity. Buyers and sellers are in the midst of the Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s holidays, then Old Man Winter sets up shop for a couple of months. Do sellers put homes on the market during this time – yes. And do buyers search for and view homes during this time- also yes. But the overall activity slows compared to the rest of the year.
Then Spring arrives, or at least the headlights become visible at the end of the cold winter tunnel. By late February, Sellers who are serious about selling begin to prepare their homes for sale and buyers who are serious about buying begin to prepare for their house hunting. Marketing and selling your home in the Spring can be a great time of year to get your home shown, sold and settled. It’s true, you’ll have more competition (other home sellers) than other times in the year but you’ll also have more buyers looking to purchase a home. So what are some of the key factors sellers have working for them in the Spring?
- People have been hunkered down during the depths of winter – January and February – and are ready to get out in the relatively warm days that begin in March.
- Many people view homes during the early evening hours of the work week. By early March, the clocks are moved forward an hour and we have early evening sunlight again. Perfect for viewing homes!
- Winter weather can take a toll on yards and homes exteriors. By March, and certainly by April, homeowners can really spruce up their curb appeal with some clean up and some gardening. Reattach loose gutters, clean up leaves and weeds leftover from the previous Fall, add fresh mulch, and plant some colorful flowers.
- It’s tough (and sometimes impossible) to have exterior repairs made to your home in the cold winter months. But by Spring, you’ll have no trouble further improving your curb appeal with fresh exterior paint, concrete repairs, a new coat of driveway sealant, etc.
- Many buyers would like to settle on their home purchase in the Summer after school ends in late May or early June. Considering that the typical time from signed contract to settlement is 45-60 days, a typical timeline for a buyer is “get pre-approved” for a mortgage in February”, “begin looking at homes for sale in March”, “submit an offer and get it negotiated in April”, “settle on the purchase in June”.
Here’s a few more things to consider specific to Spring, 2018. The Philadelphia area has seen a low supply of homes for sale over the past 1-2 years combined with a robust buyer demand. Naturally, that combination has caused home prices to increase – the result of what’s commonly called the law of supply and demand. That low supply has continued into 2018, meaning that if buyer demand remains strong, home prices will continue to rise – a good thing if you’re a home seller. And what might cause buyer demand to remain strong? Three important economic factors: our overall economy is very good, the unemployment rate is at almost record lows, and by most experts accounts, the interest rates of mortgages are likely to increase later this year. The conclusion? Home buyers feel secure in their employment and will want to buy now, in the Spring, before interest rates increase. Again, good things if you’re a seller.
If you plan to sell your home this year, or if you are just thinking about it and have some questions, feel free to contact me, Rick Sheppard, at (610)864-9872 or [email protected], to set up a free, no obligation visit. And if you’d first like to learn a little bit about me, click the About Rick link and the client testimonials link at my website – www.RickSheppard.com. I‘ve been helping home buyers and home sellers with their real estate needs for the past 30 years. I love what I do as a real estate broker and would be happy to share my expertise with you.
Written by Rick Sheppard, RE/MAX Achievers Inc