How Long Will It Take to Sell My Home?
Once the decision is made to sell your home, the first thing that pops into most people’s mind is the question of how long the process is going to take. After all, whether you’re in a hurry and needing to move for a job, or you have some time, it’s still something that you want to know. You have to make moving plans, maybe register children in schools and a myriad of other tasks.
What you need to remember is that there is no cut and dried answer to that question. There are a number of variables, and short of grossly under-pricing the home for a quick sale to a waiting investor, you will need to get some information to come up with a reasonable time estimate.
The current local real estate market:
What’s the market like right now in your area. Is it what they like to refer to as a sellers’ market? That’s when there is plenty of demand and sellers are getting better prices from buyers competing for properties. The other side, the buyers’ market, isn’t as much fun. Demand is low, supply is high, and buyers are tough negotiators. Find out from your Realtor what your market is like.
How long are other homes staying on the market?
Get your real estate professional to give you a recent average days on market (DOM) for sold properties. This will tell you a lot, but it’s still an average, and can be influenced by agents and sellers over or under pricing homes. Start with that number though, and then consider the next item.
What’s the current discount percentage from list price to sold price?
This can tell you a lot, particularly in relation to days on market. And, the tendency of real estate agents will be to give you the ratio for the list price at the time of the sale, not really what you want. In other words, they’ll get the list price of the homes recently sold, and divide it into the sold price and get the average. So, if the average list price was $200,000, and the average sold price was $192,500, then the sold-to-list ratio is $192.5k/200k = 96%.
However, while this is good information, hopefully their MLS system will give you the original list prices, BEFORE any price reductions. This is the price at which the home hit the market initially. This tells you a lot more, and in times when prices are being reduced, you’ll see very different ratios. Sold prices will be at lower percentages to original list prices. This tells you that those homes stayed on the market longer and had to reduce their prices.
Now you can estimate your home’s probable time on market:
With this information, you and your Realtor can run the CMAs, Comparative Market Analysis, but adjust your price to a point where it should sell faster than the current average days on market.