Every seller wants to know how long it will take them to sell their homes. The answer varies from home to home and sale method to sale method.
If your main concern is selling your home in a timely manner, the bulk of accomplishing that goal depends on the way you find a buyer.
The Factors That Affect a Sale
The time it takes to sell your home depends on both the way you’re selling and the factors surrounding that sale. It’s a unique mixture for every home seller, so no two situations are the same. Some properties will sell in the blink of an eye, while others might need a little more time.
Condition of the Property
Homes that are in perfect condition generally sell quickly at a fair asking price. Homes that need work won’t sell for top dollar. Buyers want a bargain, and they want a price that reflects the amount of work that needs to be done.
If there are a lot of great properties at great prices in your neighborhood, they may not want to be bothered with a house that needs work – they might buy up the homes in better condition.
Homes in neighborhoods with high crime rates or low property values are generally slow to sell, but houses in other neighborhoods may face similar problems.
Homes that are far away from major businesses or outside of good school districts are difficult to sell – especially to working families.
The Local Real Estate Market
A lot of things affect an area’s real estate market. Sometimes it’s the local economy, and other times it’s because more people are interested in moving out than moving in.
If your neighbor’s similar home has been on the market for a long time, you can expect your home to be on the market for just as long unless things take a rapid turn for the better.
The Seller’s Personal Situation
Some people need to sell very quickly. Homeowners facing foreclosure, divorce, a death in the family, code violations, or serious property damage that they can’t afford to repair might not be able to wait very long.
Three months is considered to be a great timeline to sell a great home on the traditional market, but not every seller has three months to play with.
Selling with a Real Estate Agent
Selling with a real estate agent can either be really swift or really slow. You don’t always know what you’re going to get unless you’re living in an area where homes typically sell quickly regardless. Your real estate agent might recommend that you repair or renovate your home before listing it, which can add to the overall timeframe.
If your house is ready to go from the start, it needs to be photographed, appraised, listed, and advertised. It’s unlikely that the very first person to view the property will purchase it – a home is a huge investment, and buyers like to look around before they decide when and where to make an offer.
Once you get an offer you accept, the escrow process has to begin. The buyer needs to get approved for a mortgage in order to complete the transfer of the home. If they don’t get approved for the home loan, you’ll need to start this process over again. It’s rare that a typical buyer will offer all cash for the home, so this process is almost always necessary.
In a healthy market, you can expect to sell with a real estate agent anywhere between 90 and 120 days of listing. Worst case scenario, you’ll go through a few price cuts and need to re-list your home once the previous listing expires. It all depends on your local real estate market.
Selling By Owner
Selling your home all on your own is an ambitious undertaking. You decide what you want to repair or renovate before you sell, or if you’d rather sell the property in its current condition.
You’ll need to do the listing, staging, showing, and advertisement all by yourself. This takes a lot of time, and it’s going to cost you money. If you’re savvy about it, it might cost you less than what you would have paid in commission to a real estate agent.
The timeframe for selling a home by owner is the least predictable. It all depends on the time and resources you have at your disposal. If you work full time, you might not be able to commit as fully as a real estate agent.
You’ll need to learn as you go if you’ve never sold a home by yourself before, and this learning process will likely extend the timeframe.
Selling to an Investor
Investors buy homes with cash, so they don’t need to secure a loan. There’s no reason to stage, list, or advertise anything when you sell to an investor. You won’t need to hire or pay a real estate agent. They want the property as-is, and they want it directly from you.
This is a direct sale. Some investors can close the sale on your house in as little as week. It’s undoubtedly the fastest way to sell a home, making it the best option for people who can’t or don’t want to wait.
Investors never pay full market value for a home because they aren’t going to live in it, but they also significantly expedite the process. It’s a tradeoff, but a lot of people find it worthwhile.
Which Should I Choose?
How big of a rush are you in? Can you afford to wait a while? How much money do you want, and when do you want it? You have a lot of things to consider before you decide which sale method will be the best for your home. You can always contact us. We’ll be more than happy to go over your options with you.