We are in a SELLER’S MARKET! This is a really BIG DEAL!

We are in a SELLER’S MARKET! This is a really BIG DEAL!  This means the time it takes to sell a house is shorter and the ability to get top market price is higher.  The average market time is less than 68 days from list to close.  This is very fast.

If you have never sold a house before or it has been quite some time you may not know or remember the discomfort on always having to be ready for strangers to come to your house.  You are on call all the time and need to be ready every day that someone will want to show your house.  This is very stressful not knowing from day to day that you need to have the house in the best showing condition all the time.

I have sold a home with kids at home and without and I hated the process each time.  I remember throwing toys under beds and do a fast clean of the bathrooms, making unmade beds and racing around doing last minute clean up.

Agents will call to make an appointment and sometimes not show up.  In the age of cell phones they can call you, but sometimes they forget and you are left waiting.  Other times the buyers may decide they don’t like the neighborhood or the exterior of the house or perhaps the condition of the neighbor’s house and tell their agent they don’t want to see it. Or the buyers are in the area looking at other homes and ask to see yours and they are parked in front of your house.  You can say no, but that might have been your buyer you turned away.

Technically a seller’s market is generally considered to be market time of up to four months. This is roughly twice as long as we see now.  There is a small window where the market is considered balanced and negotiating power is more evenly placed between the buyers and the sellers.  Right now sellers are in a more powerful position, since buyers have fewer homes to choose from and they need to make an offer quickly or face not having the home they want as an option, because someone else bought it first. There is also the possibility of multiple offers coming in on your house, which is a luxury not see in slower markets.

This situation will not last. Real estate markets change and cycle through buyers and seller markets.  In my career I have seen market time as long as 18 months.  The average for my clients was 6 months, but that is still a long period of time. The showings are few and far between and it might take months to see one offer.  When negotiating an offer in a buyer’s market you are not in a strong negotiating position – the buyer is, because there may be many homes competing with yours.  There may be half a dozen models just like yours up for sale at the same time in your neighborhood. If you aren’t willing to negotiate with the buyer they simply move on to another choice.

This is absolutely the time to be a seller. However, we continue to see a shortage of homes for sale. Due to the low inventory many homeowners are afraid that the home they want to buy may not be available. The truth is the right home may not be available.  Or it might be for sale, but you have a house to sell before you can afford to purchase the new one.

Seller Strategies:

  1. Make an offer subject to the sale or closing of your existing house. However, if you end up competing with other offers that don’t have this type of contingency you will not be on the short list of offers the seller considers.  Even if you get your offer accepted you face the risk that another buyer makes a non-contingent offer after yours is accepted and if you don’t have the financial ability to remove your contingency you lose the home.
  2. If you have the financial strength to own two homes, buy the new home first and then sell. This is more expensive, but solves the problem of not having your new home in place.
  3. Sell first and be prepared that you might need to move into temporary housing until the right home comes on the market. This puts you in a much stronger negotiating position, especially if you are competing with other buyers for the same home.

I understand that a double move, living in temporary housing and putting your furnishings in storage is a major inconvenience.  There are extra expenses and short term lifestyle changes to accommodate this situation.  However, this allows you to be a very strong and flexible buyer in the seller’s eyes.

If you would like a Free Consultation Regarding your personal situation please let me know.

I also provide Free Comparative Market Analysis of your house and can help you find out how much buying power you have for your next home.

I look forward to talking to you.


Jamie Levy
Associate Broker
West USA Realty

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