During the best week to list, home prices are expected to be $8,400 higher than the average week and $48,000 higher than the early 2023 price. Real estate listings are expected to be viewed 16.4% more than a typical week.
While spring is typically considered the prime selling season, demand is likely to spike in the third week of April, with homes expected to leave the market 18 per cent faster than a typical week.
"The best week represents a delicate balance between less competition from other sellers (i.e. fewer listings), higher potential sale prices and quick time on the market," said Hannah Jones, economic research analyst at Realtor.com.
Realtor.com's economics team identified this ideal sales week after carefully studying the market's behaviour from 2018 to 2022. (Please note that 2020 was excluded as market conditions were not typical at the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic). Competition from other sellers, the length of time a home stays on the market, the number of views for each property, the listing price and the likelihood of a price reduction were all included in the analysis.
There seems to be no bad time to list a home at the height of a pandemic. Homes were selling very quickly, often with multiple bids exceeding the asking price.
What about now? The once red-hot market is lukewarm at best.
Buyers today face three major obstacles that keep them on the edge of their seats: a shortage of homes for sale, high prices for existing properties and rising mortgage rates that make monthly mortgage payments about 50 per cent more expensive than they were a year ago.
What homebuyers desperately need to jump over the affordability hurdle was at the top of the list at the open house: new listings.
Just how desperate are homebuyers? New listings have fallen for 35 consecutive weeks, plunging 26 per cent in the week ending March 4. And overall inventory is still 50% below pre-pandemic norms.
Many sellers, who are also buyers, are finding it difficult to find their new homes and are struggling to cope with higher interest rates. This has deterred many from listing.
As a result, sellers willing to fight this pent-up demand may be rewarded, as savvy buyers know not to dilly-dally if a good home comes onto the market.
"Buyers like fresh listings - those who have been watching the market know that these great new listings will sell quickly," says Candice Krasovec, a real estate agent and certified home appraiser with Pierce County Appraisal in Washington and Texas.
If every seller knows the best week to list, hesitant homeowners may worry that there will be a glut of homes on the market, complicating the competition.
However, sellers who are reluctant to put a "for sale" sign on their lawn on their best week may want to consider a key real estate fact: the market is about to enter prime time for homebuyers with families who typically want to move out before the new school year begins.
"New listings," says Jones, "tend to increase in late spring and early summer." Therefore, entering the market during the best week gives sellers a great opportunity to catch the attention of buyers before listing activity is in full swing."
Despite the recent downturn in the market, turnkey homes in desirable locations are still selling briskly and getting "a lot of attention", says Jones.
The key, however, is for sellers to list their homes at a well-thought-out price. Jones advises sellers to be super targeted in their research.
"Sellers," she says, "need to be familiar with the local market and work closely with local agents to ensure their listings are attractive to buyers." Buyers feeling the pressure of affordability may be more discerning, so reasonably priced, well-maintained homes are the ticket to drumming up big demand."