What is the Best Time to Sell a House in the US?

Hannah Griffith
8 min read
September 30, 2022
best time to sell a house

The best time to sell a house depends on many things, including how much you want to get, whether you're selling an investment property and other factors. In this article, we’re talking about residential properties. The best time to sell an investment property will differ as various factors affect investors' decisions. 

When is the best time to sell a house? Is it spring? Or winter? Those are questions that can never be answered with 100% certainty. But with careful research and study, we can look at when homes typically receive the highest prices in markets across the country.

Summer tends to be the best hottest season for home sellers and buyers. It is the most active quarter for the real estate market as the temperature rises and people start searching for a new home. You can think of the term “spring cleaning.” The change of weather brings a new life force, and summers are associated with outward changes. However, some areas in the US can defy this statement. According to a Nerdwallet analysis, the highest home price in Las Vegas, Phoenix, and California was recorded in December. So in some areas, home buying activities are at their peak when you’re planning for the new year and Christmas. 

And here is an interesting fact: High-priced months tend to bring fast results. For example, if you’re getting the highest price in December, you can also expect to sell fast. Similarly, low-priced months equal increased days on the market. That means more waiting and more hassle for the sellers. You must choose the right time to sell your house fast for the most money. So for some reason, the timing also drives the price. Find the best time to sell a house, and you can expect a better price. 

Best Months to Sell a House

What are the best months to sell a house? Looking at the national statistics, we can say that March is the best time to sell a house. A few years before 2019, May was the best month to sell your home. You will list your property and wait for the market to heat up, and expect the house to go under closing in June. However, demand has shifted in the last few years, so we are sticking to the most reliable data available. So as of now, March seems the best time to sell a house in the US. 

Within March, the mid-week (11th March to 19th March) is the most active for the real estate sector. 

According to Zillow.com, for the highest asking price, you can consider listing at the end of April. Of course, there is no guarantee of selling at the asking price, but statistics show that homes listed in April sell for above or close to the asking price. 

What is the Best Time of Year to Sell a House? 

Most new homeowners are millennials—couples, individuals, but primarily families with young kids. And for young parents, the biggest hassle is moving houses. You need to prepare your kids for a new experience. You must find a good school neighborhood and a safe area for your family. So most prospective buyers begin their search in March and take a more aggressive approach in April and May. The goal is to secure a home before the summer season and the start of the new term. Parents want to provide time for kids to adjust to a new neighborhood. 

In most parts of the country, the 2nd quarter represents the most activity in terms of closed deals. However, moving closer to October, the situation becomes challenging for sellers. So what’s the best time of the year to sell your house? Experts agree that you should list your home by the end of March to secure a deal between April to June. 

That being said, the local market will influence the timing. Current employment rate, mortgage pricing, and tax benefits have their impact. 

Why do Seasons Play Their Part in Your Property Transaction? 

The best time to list your home is affected by seasons, especially in areas with varying temperatures. In some parts of the country, the temperature remains almost the same all the year, but in some areas, you’ll find snowfall and sizzling hot weather. And it’s not just real estate. Weather and seasons impact every business activity. 

Selling a House in the Spring

Spring is the best time of the year to sell your house. The reasons are apparent as we’re getting more sunlight, days are becoming brighter, and the temperature is suitable for house hunting. Also, the spring season is ideal for young parents with school-going kids. 

Selling a House in the Summer

Generally speaking, summer is not the best time of the year to sell your house. You will see a lot of sales data in summer, but those are the homes listed in Spring. In some areas, summer is a great time to list your home, but that depends on the weather. So, when does summer start in your city? Recently climate has shifted, so while May was considered the beginning of summer, your experience can be different. Your real estate agent can guide you about the local trends here. 

Selling a House in the Winter

Winter is considered the worst time to sell a house in the US. The busy holiday season, drop in temperature, and short days are all valid reasons. You can think of winter as a resting period for the real estate sector. People are planning for the following spring, but there is less activity in terms of sales data. 

However, as we said earlier, local markets are different. A busy holiday season can drive sales in your area. An experienced real estate agent can bring you prospects through effective marketing. And in winter, you have less competition from other sellers. So should you list your home in the winter? 

Not precisely because statistics don’t suggest that, however, you can consult your real estate agent to get data specific to your area and decide accordingly. 

Selling a House in the Fall

Some buyers might shop for a home in the early fall season. You might find buyers hurrying up to complete the sale before school starts, or the weather becomes cold. That urgency can increase the price of homes in your area. However, most prospective buyers might be searching for a new home because of a personal issue like job relocation or family travel. So pricing can be an issue here. 

What’s the Best Time to Sell? When You’re Ready

Investing in real estate is not about seasons or market timing. The best time to sell a house is different for every person. When selling a home: 

  • You need to think about the financial outcome
  • Costs of selling your home
  • The market value of your home 
  • Conditions of the real estate market

Does your home need repairs? Do you feel ready to relocate to a new place? Are you prepared to handle repairs and negotiations? Have you found a realtor in your area? (If not, you might have to find a qualified real estate agent to sell your home. )

Mortgage rates will also impact your selling price. Reduced mortgage interest rate means buyers can afford better homes. Prospective buyers can qualify for a housing loan and finance your property. An increase in interest rate makes it difficult to pay back the loan, reducing the number of sales in any area. (A change in interest rate can change the real estate situation regardless of the month or season. )

Similarly, what’s the employment ratio in your area? Seasons don’t matter if buyers can’t finance your home. Your chances of selling are higher if you live in an area with a high median income and employment rate. You will find more qualified buyers if you list your home. 

Lastly, local developments in your area/neighborhood can help determine the right time. For example, if a new shopping mall or office building is under construction, you can wait for it to be complete. That business will drive the need for more housing opportunities in the area, and you might sell your home for a better price. 

The Bottom Line: Best time to sell a house

So you made it so far: let’s do the recap. What’s the best time to sell a house? Thursday is considered the best day for listing your property, and March is the best time to sell a house. However, local market conditions determine the right timing. 

You must consider the mortgage interest rates, housing inventory, and weather conditions. States with all-year-same temperature enjoy sales all year. Yes! There will be a peak period, but the weather is not playing its part. Similarly, cold weather states see the most real estate activity in summer and spring. You can talk to your real estate agent to determine the best time to sell a house, including: 

  • Shortest days on the market
  • Highest asking price
  • Highest listing price

Ideally, you would like to start planning earlier in Winter. First, make a list of required repairs and find qualified contractors. Winter is not busy, so you can find professional contractors and renovate your home. Once you’re ready, you can find an agent and list it at the end of March to sell by the end of the summer season.