We frequently hear this question, so we felt it was worth answering. Many sellers believe it’s best to wait until spring to list their properties because there are more buyers in the spring. While this is true, they often forget that there is also a flood of new listings in the spring, so the increased buyer activity is negated by the increase in listings. It’s also easy for your property to be overlooked in the deluge of spring listings.
Winter does present some challenges for selling. Your landscaping and curb appeal might not shine, you can't open the windows for showings, and moving in colder temperatures with the threat of snow is no picnic. However, there are several advantages:
· Winter buyers, in general, aren’t tire kickers. In an ideal world, few people would choose to move in the winter, so when a buyer is looking in the winter you know they’re serious.
· Vermont is a 4 season recreational state. Many tourists come to VT during the winter to downhill ski and ride, to Nordic ski, fat bike and / or snowmobile. If your home is anywhere near any of these, winter might expose your property to a completely different audience.
· The advent of the internet has made winter shopping easier. Gone are the days of trying to evaluate a property based on one photo and a few words in the local paper. Now buyers have access to 30-40 photos, 3-D tours, multiple pages of data, neighborhood data, Google street view, and aerial maps with just a few clicks.
· The process from list to close can be cleaner and quicker, since the parties instrumental to a sale—attorneys, inspectors, lenders, and appraisers—tend to have less on their plates. This means a winter sale may result in a less stressful transaction.
Let's take a look at last winter (November 1, 2018— March 31, 2019), when 342 properties were sold in the Northeast Kingdom. Not too shabby for a time of year when most consumers think the market is dead.
Finally, you never know when the right buyer for your property is going to enter the market, but you don't want to miss the opportunity. So, if you’re ready to sell and your home is ready to list, think twice about waiting and trying to time the market perfectly.
If you are considering listing your home or land, don’t hesitate to reach out to a member of the C21 Farm & Forest team—the top-selling agency in the NEK—we’d be happy to provide a market analysis or offer suggestions for getting your home ready to sell.