As we are now officially in the fall season, the temperatures are cooling, and the perception is that the real estate market will be cooling as well. While it is true that as the summer months come to an end, and as the school year gets into full swing, unsold inventory tends to come off the market. But new data suggests there might be a bit of a sweet spot for buyers in the seasonality of real estate before things really cool off.
According to a new article from CNN Business, this is the best week of the year to find a deal on a new house. While summer is well-known to be the busy season for real estate, those who haven’t found a home going into September generally hang up their search for the year, which means motivated sellers tend to lower their prices in response to fewer competing offers.
“The last week in September tends to be the best time to buy based on these indicators. You can call it the ‘Black Friday’ of home shopping.” – George Ratiu, Senior Econonmist, Realtor.com
The research shows that buyers see 26% less competition in final week of September as compared to a normal week during the peak season. What is really interesting, however, is that there were 6% more homes on the market during Realtor.com’s analysis of 2016 to 2018 – more inventory with less competition is a buyer’s dream.
That’s good news, but for the local Seattle buyer, the news gets better.
Buyers in the West see the most pronounced benefit of this “Black Friday” effect with 30% less competition than usual and an estimated 22% increase in listings. Seattle buyers see the most dramatic effect in the nation with a 41% drop in competition compared to an average week, but the Seattle market also sees a 41% increase in inventory!
These numbers aren’t enough to call it a buyer’s market, though. With existing companies increasing their size and presence in the Greater Seattle area, and with Apple and Facebook making massive investments in the region, there will certainly be competition for the foreseeable future. It is not a seller’s market, by any means, either; it’s more of a competitive equilibrium. But if you were mulling over whether to buy a new property or not, now could be your chance! Act quickly, or you might miss a seasonal opportunity.
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