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Best Time to Buy? Best Time to Sell?


When is the best time to buy? When is the best time to sell? I get asked these questions constantly everywhere I go. In short, the answer is that it depends on your individual circumstances. Each person has a unique personal buying or selling situation, whether starting a new job, facing rent increases, retirement, etc.

However there are certain seasonal trends that govern the real estate market. Traditionally, Spring is the busiest time in the housing market. This past Spring we experienced a very strong seller's market with extremely low inventory and a bevy of buyers competing for those homes. Now, throughout the Summer, the inventory of available homes has steadily increased, providing more choice for buyers. The outlook for the upcoming Fall and Winter seasons remains strong. More properties on the market means that buyers have less competition for the same homes and may be able to get a better deal. In the late Fall and Winter, when inventories generally drop, homeowners who do decide to sell are more likely to capture the active buyers.

But the real answer to the question of timing is whatever makes the most sense for you financially. Homes are bought and sold every single day of the year, including weekends and holidays, so timing may be important but not necessarily crucial. What really matters and the question you should ask yourself is "Do I need to buy now?" or "Do I need to sell now?"

Brian Block is a Realtor with Re/Max Allegiance in Alexandria, Virginia. He is also a real estate attorney. He can be contacted at 703-626-0715. If you or anyone you know has real estate questions or is looking to buy or sell real estate in the Northern Virginia and Metropolitan D.C. area, contact Brian Block. For more information and to start your home search, visit his website at http://www.brianblock.com


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