Labor Day marked the unofficial end of summer but other than an August pause, the real estate market doesn’t show any signs of cooling off just yet. So, the all-consuming question is “Is it a good time to buy or sell?” The correct answer (always) is – It depends. Although there may not be any hard and fast rules, here are a few pointers that can help you decide when the best time is for you, whether you are looking to buy or sell.
Looking to Sell?
The peak season in NYC real estate starts in the spring and runs through September. Sellers tend to put their homes on the market during these months, catering to the increased number of buyers, and can sell at a premium. The robust NYC real estate market combined with low inventories means that pricing your property correctly will allow for a very quick sale. Warmer weather and families looking to move before the new school year are the driving factors for buyers during the peak spring through the early fall season.
Looking to Buy?
With September rounding out the peak season, active buyers will see a good selection of property but at a premium. As we approach the fall and winter seasons, all key markers of market activity including searches, prices, sales and inventory, typically hit their annual lows during what is known as “blackout times,” coinciding with inclement winter weather and the holiday season. Although potential buyers face less competition during these undesirable months, they are also faced with diminished inventory and open houses to peruse. However, less competition may translate into bigger discounts and buyers may not have to be as aggressive.
The NYC real estate market remains strong, and is largely resilient against seasonal changes. The continuous demand for housing surpasses the importance of the season. For example, most recent reports show that although there has been a slight increase in availability, overall inventories remain a problem in the market’s most active segments. Last month, the real estate market continued to break records with condo resales trading at historical highs, a direct result of low condo inventory (Streeteasy Manhattan Condo Market Report).
Although the decision to buy or sell may seem complex, Bianka Yankov, Co-Founder of SPIRE Group Inc. offers some sound words of advice: “Weighing the benefits and challenges of buying and selling during the high and low seasons is important. However, you need to start considering your options long before you are ready to buy or sell. Being prepared and knowing the marketplace and your competition is paramount to getting the best result.”