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The Best Time of Year to Buy a Home

Historically December has been about the best month possible for buyers to negotiate with sellers simply because in the month of December there are so many listings on the market and so few buyers!  Likely due to the holidays, this seasonal drop in demand is significant enough that our “Percent of Original List Price Received at Sale” typically hits its bottom in January… which would be when most offers in December would close.

This is a great time to make an offer, but you still have to have a willing seller!  There’s an occasional house that you can find “for a steal” but almost all houses are selling for very close to market value today, though that market value has been falling since 2006.

What seems troubling is that some sellers still do not want to accept market realities… or need a lot of convincing to get there.  In a strong sellers market sellers thought that their home was better than the rest on the block… many sellers still think that is true.  While in 2004 and 2005 having that opinion didn’t hurt a seller because they likely received 2-3 offers over a 30 day period.  In today’s market, a seller is likely to get a single offer in a 90 day period, so when they do get that offer they may not realize what they have to lose.  By the time the seller does realize that there are many, many, many good homes on the market today and that they can’t all be the best and reduces their expectations(often price) accordingly, the buyer oftentimes has already closed on a purchase with a seller that “got it.”

December 2007 – Supply-Demand Ratio from MAAR
(click for larger version)
Supply-Demand Ratio for December 2007

October 2007 – Percent of Original List Price Received at Sale
(click for larger version)
Percentage of List Price Received at Sale - October 2007

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TwinCitiesRealEstateBlog.com is not a Multiple Listing Service MLS, nor does it offer MLS access.
This website is a service of Aaron Dickinson of Edina Realty, a broker Participant of the Regional Multiple Listing Service of Minnesota, Inc.