The Best & Worst Times to List…. Your Home

Achieving the premium price for a property is every vendor’s (sellers) dream and good real estate agents are committed to exceeding client expectations. But real estate isn’t an exact science. There are many factors that come into play during any given listing period. We already know that there are more favourable seasons: Spring and Autumn are the picks – but even this is changing with Summer and Winter, both previously no-go zones for selling a home – now gaining in popularity. It is very clear that the listing period is now stretching to twelve months. Additionally, global events such as the 2007 GFC when economies around the world plummeted virtually overnight and markets of every kind came to a grinding halt are hard to predict, let alone manage. And of course, personal circumstances can change without notice.
There are however many factors that potential vendors can consider, allowing them to make informed decisions about whether to list or not. First and foremost is the supply/demand ratio. Listing when there is a glut of comparable properties – by area, inclusions and price point – doesn’t bode well for a premium sale price or a short-listing period. Properties are more inclined to sit for longer, thereby reducing the negotiating power of the vendor – often prefaced by a price reduction. Regardless of season, ideally the best time to list is when there are few comparable properties on the market. Less property competition and a strong buyer pool heightens demand, often leading to bidding wars with quick sales at premium prices.

Purchasing in a high and selling in a low is likely to deliver a financial blow and if the intended sale is discretionary, then it’s advisable to hold tight and wait until buoyancy returns. For renovator/investors this may be problematic as turning a property around is crucial to recouping investment and providing funds for the next project. If possible, investors should look to rent out the property, even on a short-term basis which will generate income and allow a buffer while waiting for a better listing time.

Selling hastily can have negative consequences that can carry forward for years to come. If waiting is a realistic option, then waiting is the appropriate strategy. If the need to sell outweighs the current market position, engaging a highly respected agent with a sound knowledge of the local market and local market trends will provide the best possible direction for potential vendors to secure a positive outcome.