How Do Real Estate Market Conditions Change from Winter to Spring?
Rumour has it that Spring is the best time to sell your home.
Is this true? Or is there just as much value in selling during cooler months? Well, in all honesty, there are pros and cons of selling in both seasons.
On one hand, trees and flowers blossom in Spring giving another layer to the presentation of your home. Nature’s beauty in full bloom offers extra curb appeal and allows you to showcase your home in the best possible natural light. The competition in the real estate market is greater from Winter to Spring, which tends to attract a larger pool of buyers. More buyers mean more competition for properties, which can potentially yield higher prices for you.
On the flip side, just like buyers need to brave the bad weather to attend Open for Inspections during Winter, the same could be said for very hot days in Summer – both are potential barriers to a sale. Nonetheless, buyers tend to be more conservative in the Winter months. This is because Winter will likely yield a better value for buyers as there is less competition in the market due to limited properties. However, this can in turn generate an increase in strongly motivated buyers, meaning fewer tyre kickers wasting your time. (Delahunty, 2019)
Is Spring really a good time to sell?
The rumours are true to an extent, Spring can be a fantastic season to sell your home. Not only does it bring warmer weather, but it attracts buyers onto the streets and into your Open for Inspections. Buying in Spring with the expectation of final settlement no later than Summer allows buyers to time their move with the school year. This is appealing because they can climatise to their new neighbourhood before the school year starts. Spring’s heightened activity and influx of buyers may also mean you receive more offers. Having multiple offers and, if selling by auction, a bidding war on auction day is a seller’s dream. Springtime is when this will most likely occur.
On the other hand, selling in Spring does not necessarily guarantee the best outcome. Although, Spring may deliver the best price for your current home, it could also mean competing with more buyers for your next property, which may result in paying a higher price. Plus, since the Spring market usually means an oversupply of houses, it might not be the optimal time to sell your home. For example, in Winter there may be one or two similar properties within the same area as yours, but in Spring there may be six to ten. If there is nothing truly outstanding about your home, you could run the risk of getting lost in a saturated market.
Ultimately, researching the market within your area prior to selling is always best practice. Is the market oversupplied or undersupplied? From there, you can gauge whether it is the best time to sell your home.
How can I maximise my property value if I’m selling in Spring?
If you decide Spring is the optimal time for you to sell your home, we’ve got a few pointers to help you make the most of the busy selling season. No one knows your property better than you. Start by pinpointing the stand-out aspects of your home, then brainstorm how you can play them up for your property’s advertisement and your Open for Inspections.
First impressions are very important in real estate, so make it count. This means giving it your best shot where buyers will first notice your property. According to Realsetate.com.au, “86% of potential buyers use online as their main tool to search for property.” (Realestate.com.au, 2015) Buyers now decide whether to click on your listing based on how your property is displayed in search results. Above all else, what buyers are using to assess your property in search results are your photos. If your home isn’t visually appealing, they won’t bother clicking through to your full listing to find out more. In Spring’s competitive market, you’ll want to give it your all so that you’re not drowned out by the competition.
Preparing your home for sale is the same amount of work whether you decide to sell your home privately or traditionally via an agent. It’s tough work and you’ll need to get your hands dirty (or hire professionals if housework isn’t your thing). The good news is, you’ll only have to do the nitty gritty stuff once, and ideally, you’ll have it all done before the photographers rock up for your property’s photo shoot.
When selling in Spring, one of the best ways to make a good first impression is to focus on the exterior appearance of your home. This includes landscaping, tidying up lawns, clearing gutters of leaves, planting colour where necessary, clearing away bushes and cutting back trees that may impede on a buyer’s view. Take advantage of nature’s pure beauty to wow your buyers.
A fresh coat of paint can be a cost-effective way to give a new lease of life both internally and externally to rooms or facades that have worn over time. Having your boundary fence all one colour is very favourable amongst buyers. Remember, it’s best to keep the overall colour palette of your home to a neutral tone. This enables you to appeal to the masses as buyers will be able to better visualise their lives in that space.
Finally, be sure to complete any other unfinished jobs that are evident around the house. If you are not a handyman invest the time to source a company who can assist you with fixing up your house in preparation for sale. These companies can provide you with an array of different trades depending on your needs. Plus, the upside of this assistance is most of these companies allow for payment to be adjusted for upon settlement.
At the end of the day, there are many more factors other than seasonality to take into account when selling your property. Life events are a major reason for selling, such as a growing family, divorce, or downsizing for retirement. So, don’t let rumours like “Spring is the best time to sell” rush you into selling if it’s not the right decision for your circumstances. Take all aspects into consideration and make an informed decision that you’re confident will result in the best outcome for you.