“Spring market” is a term that we hear tossed around frequently in conversations about real estate. In all markets, it seems to be commonly associated with lots of activity, both buying and selling. Informal polls have led me to believe that most buyers and sellers think that this is when the highest concentration of real estate market activity happens. Some real estate agents have even commented to me that they believe this increased activity is associated each year with any appreciation that is seen in home prices.
I sometimes have people reach out to me with questions about buying and selling during the spring market, and I thought I would share those here in the hopes of helping you if you have similar concerns. Some of the questions that have been asked are:
- Will the surge in buyer activity in the springtime provide enough demand that we can get by with doing fewer upgrades and still be able to sell our home for top dollar?
- Is it better to avoid buying in the spring to get more for your money?
- Is spring the only good time to sell a home?
- If it takes so long getting the house ready to sell that spring market is over, should we hold off until next spring to sell the house?
- On a tight budget, what are the best things to spend money on when getting your house ready for market?
- Which of those things are best done by a pro and which can you save money on by going DIY?
There are so many factors that come into play and each person’s situation is unique, so I can honestly say that the answer to all of these depends on your circumstances. The upgrades that you need to have in place for top dollar can vary somewhat depending on your budget, how quickly you need to sell, which county you live in, if you’re competing against newer construction, and current supply and demand in your particular price range and perhaps even school district.
Should you avoid buying in the spring? It’s certainly true that demand tends to drive prices up, and no one likes getting caught in a bidding war. The best time to buy isn’t necessarily associated with the time of year, but with the peaks and valleys of the market that occur over several years. The very best time to buy is when the market is in a valley, after home prices have dropped off and before prices begin to start climbing again.
Spring isn’t necessarily the best time to sell, but sometimes your work or life situation is the deciding factor here. Locally, we see lots of real estate activity during the springtime as many of our military personnel stationed at Fort Gordon begin PCSing to other duty stations. Match Day at the medical college (third Friday in March) also helps to drive spring activity in the local Augusta real estate market. Many families with children choose to sell in the late spring and early summer so that their children can finish the school year at the same school and then move during the summer.
If you’re trying to decide how the timing of your renovations play into spring market, my advice is to finish as quickly as you comfortably can. If budget restraints push your renovations into fall, don’t fret as this could very well mean a time of lower inventory. Bottom line? Get professional advice about the best way to handle your unique situation. If you’re not currently working with a Realtor and have questions or need help figuring out the best timeline for you, please feel free to reach out to me at 706-945-7649 or firstname.lastname@example.org. I’m always happy to listen and help!