Monday, November 19, 2007

Ask Erin: To List, or Not to List?

I met with a prospective seller over the weekend who must sell...and he asked me if now was really that great of a time to be listing property. Luckily it seems that inventory is decreasing slightly, and sellers who are simply testing the waters are letting their listings expire and not re-listing them right now. However, contrary to popular belief, the holiday season is not a bad time to list your home.

Let's face it; serious buyers are in the market during the holidays. I can not even tell you how many ready, willing, and able buyers I have had pre-qualify in the last 3 weeks. While I think the media has done Sacramento (and many other areas) a total injustice by blowing certain market conditions out of proportion, buyers are now realizing that now is the time to jump into the market. Buyers do not buy based solely on financial motivations - people get divorced, have babies, get married, and relocate every month during the year. Each of these big events could trigger a change in home ownership. Also, many buyers who are thinking about buying in the spring start their search now, and will buy if they find the right property. Interest rates are still low! Yes certain loan programs have disappeared, but there are still many programs out there for all types of able buyers.

On the other side of the coin, with listings expiring and not re-listing this time of year, there is less competition. Most un-motivated sellers will not want the trouble of showings during the holidays, potentially interrupting family gatherings, having to put away holiday items, etc. With all the bank-owned inventory, you will be able to showcase your "home" - not just another house on the market. Bank-owned homes often do not have operating or connected utilities, and will feel all the more cold and dark. If you wait until January to list, there will a LOT more inventory.


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