To List NOW, or list later?

Posted by | February 25, 2014 | Real Estate | No Comments

Recently a buyer emailed me to ask a question about a listing I’d sent them.  They noticed in the listing history that the home was sold just a year or two earlier for 25% less than it was listed for today – “THIS MUST BE A MISTAKE?” they asked.  No.  I think the majority of home owners in King and Snohomish County don’t have an up-to-date idea of what their home is worth and might be pleasantly surprised to learn what they appreciated in 2013 alone.

Here is one of my favorite success stories:
Kvam Listing Photo
My friend and customer, we’ll call her Jane Doe, decided to buy a home in Ballard in autumn of 2011.  We searched high and low for the perfect home for a stylish single woman and during our hunt she asked, “Should I wait?  Could prices go down more?”  And to be honest I didn’t know the answer to that.  But with rates close to 3% and prices at historical century lows, I advised her that the two primary rules of thumb for investing in real estate are:
1. Buy low and sell high
2. Location, location, location.

And I couldn’t foresee a situation that was better poised for capitalizing on both.  She closed on a home a month later for $342,500.  Fortunately, the market grew gradually in 2012 and swiftly in 2013.  We re-listed the home in August of 2013 and closed in less than 45 days at $480,000.  That’s an increase of $137,500 or 40% gain in less than 2 years.  And this is just one of many success stories I’ve been a pleasure to facilitate over the last ten years.

What if your home is worth 40% more today than when you bought it?  Or even 20%?  What ARE the benefits to listing NOW versus LATER?

1.  It’s important to keep in mind that while your home is likely up in value, so are the homes you’ll be looking at.  However, you may have the opportunity now to sell and re-invest in a style of home or location that might not be accessible in years to come.

2. Seasonally, spring and summer are the most popular seasons to list.  But there are big benefits to being the early-bird on the market and listing before the peak season: Inventory is LOW so you have less competition plus, buyers will already be out looking so you’ll be positioned well in this “Seller’s Market”.(We’re still consistently seeing multiple offers and pre-inspects in the greater Seattle area.)

3. Interest rates are still very low but climbing slowly (approximately 4.5% currently).  You can buy more with your money with today’s lower rates! Which may not sound like much but can sometimes push buyers out of a prices range.

If you are at all curious about what your home is worth – I am more than happy to generate a personalized Property Value Report for you at no cost anytime. Don’t rely on Zillow to “zestimate” your property value – with inventories so low, sites like Zillow have very little to work with in terms of recent comps and sales in your immediate neighborhood. This makes Zillow marginally less reliable than the data I can provide. Whether you’re ready to sell or not even considering it, I’d love to provide you  (or anyone you know!) with valuable  information on your home. Feel free to email or call me today! I can’t wait to hear from you.

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