Aug 30 2022

Five reasons to list your home this fall

Selling in autumn has advantages, including facing less competition and more motivated buyers.

The housing market is no longer red-hot—meaning, you won’t be fighting off crowds of homebuyers. But if you’re thinking about selling, listing in a moderating market still has its advantages.

Less competition, plus 4 more reasons to sell a house this fall

Are you trying to figure out the right time to list? This season has some unique opportunities. Here’s why:

1. Housing inventory is limited.

You’re probably well-acquainted with the inventory shortage by now. It’s been making headlines for the past two years. And while housing inventory has loosened up some as more listings have become available, we have a long way to go before we can correct today’s historically low supply levels.

The inventory of unsold homes recently rose to a three months’ supply—still below what’s needed to sustain a healthy market:*

  • When the Months’ Supply of Inventory (MSI) is less than four months, sellers have the negotiating power.
  • When the MSI reaches six months, it’s considered a buyer’s market.
  • Ideally, the MSI will sit between four- and six-months’ supply to maintain balance.

These low supply levels confirm that we’re still in a seller’s market for the moment. But compared to a year ago, today’s active listings are 31-percent higher. This simply means that when buying your next home, you should have more listings in your price range to choose from.

2. Homebuyers are serious.

While spring and summer are known to be booming buying seasons, fall is when highly motivated homebuyers stick around.

And so:

  • If you list now, you can count on the fact that buyers touring your home aren’t browsing—they’re intent on making a purchase.
  • Many homebuyers purchasing in the fall want to close and move in before the holidays.
  • The recent REALTORS® Confidence Index from the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) shows that the market remains active; nearly 40 percent of homes sold above asking price, with most selling in under a month.

The number of days on the market is a great predictor of homebuyer demand. Homes are continuing to sell quickly, and buyers must move fast to get their offer accepted. Home sellers are still receiving close to three offers on average. Many, if not most, homebuyers will get pre-approved** first, helping to expedite the closing process once their offer is accepted.

Fall in love with a brand-new house. Find a local Loan Officer and explore your move-up mortgage options.

3. Mortgage rates could keep rising.

Mortgage rates have increased by several percentage points since the start of the year, without any sign of significantly dropping. Some of this is indirectly related to the Federal Reserve raising its benchmark rate in an effort to control inflation.

Inflation also puts pressure on mortgage rates. "If consumer price inflation continues to rise, then mortgage rates will move higher," Lawrence Yun, NAR Chief Economist, states.* "Rates will stabilize only when signs of peak inflation appear. If inflation is contained, then mortgage rates may even decline somewhat."

What does this mean if you want to sell a house? It’s a good idea to think about selling and buying a new home now, before the next potential rate increase. Ask your Loan Officer for a cost of waiting analysis if you have questions.

4. Your house will stand out.

Fall is typically a time when home sellers retreat after the busy months of summer. If you stay in the game and list in the fall, you’re very likely to see less seller competition. Depending on the demand in your area, you may have even more power to negotiate. You can be choosy about the offer you pick: You may not have to make repairs or provide seller concessions.

There’s also no season like the fall to create a warm and inviting atmosphere. You can dim the lights, stoke the fire, and use natural curb appeal (i.e., changing leaves) to attract buyers to your house.

5. You could use your equity to move up, relocate, or downsize.

If the home you’re living in is too small, too large, or in the wrong location, it could be time for a change. Today’s homeowners have accumulated a record amount of home equity. Many sellers are leveraging it to power their move to a new house, one that’s closer to family or in a dream location.

Affordability concerns can also be a motivator. “Those factors, along with more companies giving employees the permanent flexibility to work remotely, are driving a larger portion of buyers to consider homes in other parts of the country. Someone who would have to stretch beyond their budget in Los Angeles may be able to comfortably afford a home in Phoenix or San Antonio,” Taylor Marr, Redfin Deputy Chief Economist, explains.

Does selling this fall make sense?

The numbers show that home sellers who list now can expect to sell quickly and at a good price. What about you? Reach out to a local Academy Loan Officer for help: We can present you with the pros and cons based on your unique market and help you determine when the time is right.

**Pre-approval is not a commitment to lend. This is for informational and educational purposes only and not intended as an advertisement as defined by Regulation Z. Please consult a trusted professional as personal circumstances may vary. No specific results are guaranteed. MAC823-1482614.