The National Association of Realtors has tracked this for decades. The #1 answer is “Because it was the right time.” There is no need to turn yourself inside out because you want to move.
The NAR also tracks when homes go on the market; for 2016 here is what they found:
The top 10 listing dates in 2016 are: April 1st, April 15th, March 1st, June 1st, April 8th, April 14th, April 28th, March 31st, June 3 and April 22nd.
Clearly homeowners feel that the best time to list your home is spring. Winter is over and flowers are blooming. Most buyers want to move during summer. It’s either due to school schedules or because it’s easier to take time off then. They look during spring so they can schedule a summer closing. It sure seems that the best time to list your home and the best time to buy a home is spring.
There are positives and negatives to this. Sellers do have more buyers looking but they also have more homes to compete against. Buyers have more homes to look at but face much stiffer competition.
What if you want to stay this summer and move at the end of the year? What is your company transfers you in the middle of winter? That’s OK too. Homes are sold every day of the year. The fall market can be just as strong and with less competition, the 1st quarter can be very advantageous.
The best time to list your home and the best time to buy a home does seem to be spring strategically. However, strategy doesn’t matter if that’s the worst time for you. A great real estate agent will get you excellent results any day of the year.