Should I list my house in the fall or winter?

Whether to list in the “off-season” is a common question.

House for-sale sign in winter.

House for-sale sign in winter.

Whether to list (or re-list) a house in fall or winter is an important question faced by would-be home sellers. On the one hand, they’ve heard that sales activity slows in comparison with spring and summer. They question the effort to keep the driveway cleared and the house presentable when “almost no one” will be coming around. On the other hand, they’ve heard from their real estate agent that properties do, in fact, sell during the slow seasons, and may even benefit from having less competition and more motivated buyers. I can’t deny that showing a house in fall or winter may require some special effort, but I am one of those who does think it’s worth it to get or keep a house listed in the fall and winter.

The numbers say …. LIST!

To support this choice, I examined February and July residential sales in Dutchess County from 2016 back to 2002, as far back as reported in the Mid-Hudson MLS. The chart below shows the results.

Unquestionably, the market slows down in the fall and winter. Closings in February have run on average about 56 percent number of closings in July. Moreover, the percentage of inventory sold is usually higher in July (average 11 percent) than in February (average 8 percent), though the gap between both months in a single year is usually not very large.

But it’s clear, as well, that substantial activity takes place during the fall and winter. February 2016 closings represented $37,416,548 worth of business. And while this July’s total was much higher, the average and median prices were pretty close:

Total sales Average Price Median Price
February 16 $37,416,548 $287,820 $256,000
July 16 $60,065,193 $303,360 $255,000

I’ll chart dollar amounts back to 2002 at another time, but to me it seems certain that there’s enough activity in the fall and winter months to stay open for business!

feb-julsales

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Thanks for reading. If you are thinking about selling your home, please contact me. I can tell you what I bring to the table as a listing agent, and help you decide when is the right time to list.

When you are ready to start browsing homes or land in Dutchess, Columbia, and Ulster Counties, I encourage you to do so at my websiteAsk-Marty.com.

Because I am a member of THREE MLSs — Mid-Hudson MLS (Dutchess County), Hudson Valley Catskill Region MLS (Ulster County), and Columbia Greene Northern Dutchess MLS — you can search the entire region on both sides of the Hudson River. You can save properties that interest you and you can set the site to email you notices when new listings match your criteria. The site provides a great way for buyers or sellers to monitor a specific neighborhood or school district or type of property!
Best wishes,

Marty

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  1. Pingback: Should I list my house in the fall or winter? Update. | Maarten Reilingh (Marty)