The Myth of December Home Sale

December 2, 2013 by Ken Montville 1 Comment home sale

If you’re a reader of this blog or virtually any real estate blog you’ll find lots of reason to put your house on the market. People will tell you that your house looks festive when it’s all done up for the holidays.  It smells nice. Hell, even a little snow would really make your place look like a picture postcard.

Real estate people will tell you about how only the serious home buyers are out there looking for a home sale in December (partially true). Realtors will tell you about the low mortgage rates and how they may start to climb in the spring.

There are lots of blog posts out there about the Five Reasons or Ten Reasons or some number of reasons why December Home Sale are just as good as any other time of the year.

Whoa! Not So Fast.

I’ll probably get kicked out of the professional real estate club for saying this but December is really not the best time of the year to be putting your home sale on the market. I could almost title this blog post the Five Reasons Not To Put Your Home On The Market In December.

  1. Baby, it’s cold outside. December home sale  is not a fun time to look for houses. Sure. If I am being relocated to this area for a job and I have a very limited time to find a house, this may be the month. Otherwise, no one likes to get all bundled up to alternate between a hot car, the cold outside temps and the inside of a  home sale which may or may not be heated.
  2. Decorations? What decorations? Some people will really go all out and their place will look like something out of a Martha Stewart magazine. Most people will decorate a little and some people won’t decorate at all. Do you really want to decorate your house so that it looks like a model  home sale or a Thomas Kinkade painting?
  3. Is it snowing, yet? Oh yeah. The snow looks pretty if it’s freshly fallen and hasn’t taken on the gray tint from car exhausts. Speaking of cars, driving around in the snow is not all that much fun. Walking up the street or sidewalk to someone’s front door is sometimes no fun to negotiate. Let’s hope your insurance is paid up in case someone falls. Do you really want to clean up all the melted snow puddles people leave all over your house?
  4. Where’s the party? In addition to people decorating their house, they usually have a party or two. They sometimes have family over for the holidays. This means you have to turn buyers away. That’s not always a good thing since only serious  home sale buyers (see above) may not have the time to come back when it’s OK with you. Now or never.  Do you really want to invite people over when you’ve had three egg nogs over your limit? (’tis the season!)
  5. Who are all these people? Selling your house means you have to let people in to see the  home sale . Sometimes a lot of people. Sometimes more than once. Even if you get lucky and sell your house right away to one of those serious home buyers, you still have a long way to go.   home sale inspections. Appraisals. Lots of people showing up at your front door wanting to come in and do their thing.

Take A Break. Enjoy The Holidays

The bottom line here is that if you don’t have to put your home sale on the market in December, don’t do it.

Of course, if you’re already gone and the place is empty or near empty, you might as well. What the heck? Someone might actually buy it.

My advice is to start showing your place about the second week of January. That gets us past New Year’s Day. Most of everything from the holiday season is packed up and stored away (or should be). The tree is gone so the place looks more spacious. Everyone is back to work.

December is the time for fun. There’ll be plenty of time to deal with the stress of  selling your  home sale later on.

Topic: Home Sale,

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