The Summer Housing Shift
The Spring Market is now in the rearview mirror, making way for
a whole new season in home sales: summer.
The Summer Shift: The expected market time has increased by two weeks longer since the prime Spring Market.
Housing tends to follow a similar cycle every year. This time of year is no different. It started a couple of weeks ago with graduation. The market slowed a bit; many houses were not selling as rapidly as they were in April and May. The explanation from the real estate trenches was that it was due to graduations and the end of the school year.
Then there is our national holiday, the Fourth of July. Not as many buyers tour homes as they turn their focus to playing in the sun, barbecues, and fireworks. In housing, the holiday turns into a distraction of grand proportions and the lingering effects can be felt for a week.
As Southern California experiences summer heat waves, many will turn to the oasis known as the community pool, and others will flock to cool off in the welcoming, crashing waves of the Pacific. The heat will also distract the real estate market from performing on all cylinders.
Finally, the slower housing scene will be blamed on the family vacation. From Hawaii, to the East Coast, to the ultimate family destination, Orlando, it is the season for summer vacations. Camping, airplanes, house boats, motor homes, and road trips, just about everybody has plans. It is hard to tour homes or conduct real estate transactions when you are checking in to a Hyatt and touring the Empire State Building.
Many will blame the slower housing market on graduation, the 4th of July, hot summer days, and family vacations. It is, quite simply, the Summer Market. It happens every year. For sellers and buyers in the real estate trenches today, they are all experiencing the shift in the housing market already and we are just a couple of weeks into the official start of summer.
A Summer Approach for Sellers: with buyer traffic down and the expected market time rising, it is now more important than ever to NOT get too far ahead of the market by overpricing. Multiple offers can still be attained, but only for those homes that are priced at, or very close to, their Fair Market Values. Here’s a quick refresher for determining that value: take the most current closed and pending sale activity and carefully adjust for upgrades, location, amenities, and condition. The Fair Market Value is not determined by arbitrarily pricing a home out of thin air. Ignoring the fundamental shift in activity during the Summer Market will result in many homes being overpriced with absolutely no success; instead, they will waste valuable market time during the second best time of the year to sell.
A Summer Approach for Buyers: although competition dips a bit during the summer, buyers must respect the fact that it is still a seller’s market. Buyers are not able to call the shots. Sticking to paying the Fair Market Value determined by recent market activity is key. Also, knowing the local or neighborhood market conditions is extremely important as well. It may be the case that a certain neighborhood is a bit hotter than another and when a home comes on the market that is priced well and is in great condition, buyers must be willing to push the envelope a bit in terms of value. Paying a few thousand dollars more than the last comparable sale may be the winning strategy that will allow a buyer to beat out the competition. Grossly overpaying is not advised. Sometimes waiting for the next shift in housing, the Autumn Market, may be a wise approach as well.
For both buyers and sellers, the Summer Market shift means a new approach to the market is crucial in order to find success. Realistic, level headed, patient buyers and sellers will be rewarded from now through the first few weeks of August. From there, the housing market will experience another shift, the Autumn Market. Stay tuned…
For more information on market trends click the link below: