When is the Best Time to List Your Home?

You’ve heard some variation on it before:

May listings move faster. Winter is a bad time to list your home. It’s too hot outside to look for homes in July.

 So, what’s the deal? Is there a best month to sell your home? That kind of depends on why you’re selling, where your home is, how much your home is listed for, and what your deadline is. The truth is, Asheville and Western North Carolina as a whole are a unique part of the country and you don’t necessarily need to go by conventional wisdom with our market.

The Usual Advice: List in May

 A quick Google search will tell you that the first two weeks of May are the best time to sell nationwide. The Mortgage Reports says most homes move 18.5 days faster and sell for 5.9% more money when they’re listed in that sweet spot.

There are a number of factors behind this. One, that’s generally the best weather of the year for most places. People have spent the cold months getting their finances (and tax refunds) together and are ready to make a move. May listings give people time to go through the process of closing before the cold weather hits, so they won’t be moving sofas up the front step in ice and snow.

However, this is conventional wisdom. You know how people say the best time to go to Black Balsam Knob is when the leaves change and then you’re stuck in shoulder-to-shoulder lines up the trail? It’s kind of like that, but with everyone else selling their home. The market typically gets flooded in May, so if your home needs some work or is a niche property you may end up waiting longer than you expected.

Asheville’s Selling Season

Homes in Asheville are moving pretty much every day of the year. While some months are slower than others, a hot market is a hot market no matter which way you spin it. In 2018, the largest number of closed sales were between May and August, with the least number of closed sales in January and February of 2019.

However, there were also far more listings on the market in May-August than December-February, so the new listings/closings data is pretty much in lockstep. There is a slight dip in percentage of original list price received in the winter months, but that goes from a peak of 95% in July to 92% between November-February.

All in all, while summer is the hottest time for the market, there isn’t a significant change in sales that would warrant holding off on listing your property.

List When It’s Right for You

 Listing in November isn’t a death sentence for your property. You’re going to have less competition on the market, and you’ll have a lot better luck getting in those last-minute repairs before your listing goes up. Renovators are busy during the spring and summer and will be much more available, and often at a lower price once the days get shorter. Plus, the beautiful fall foliage will help buyers fall in love with your property’s mountain charm.

These late-in-the-year listings often catch the attention of buyers under some degree of pressure: the holidays are stressful enough without having a home closure hanging over your head, and people will want to close deals before the end of the year for the tax breaks. Some locals may be hibernating, but with rising business in the Asheville area, out of towners starting new jobs will be headed to town and ready to plant their roots quickly.

Summer can sometimes win out over spring, especially when it’s a muddy, rainy spring season. Summer also means longer days, so more people can get in for your open house. You’ll also have the advantage of months of housing data to look at: your realtor will have sales data for the first six or seven months of the year handy, which will help you set a competitive price for the market.

We’re Here When You’re Ready

The bottom line is there’s no wrong time to sell a home in Asheville, it all just depends on your priorities and the type of property you’re listing. If you have some time to play with, it might be beneficial to wait a few months to hit that sweet spot. If you’re on a time crunch, you’re probably still going to have some luck.

Of course, this blog is speaking in pretty general terms: different neighborhoods and property types present unique scenarios that might defy conventional wisdom. Your best bet is to get in touch with one of our Asheville real estate experts and see what they have to say.

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