Is one season better than another for home sales in Salt Lake?
Are you planning to sell your home in Salt Lake City? If you have the luxury of waiting for the optimum time to sell, congratulations! Not everyone does. Sometimes life circumstances change in the blink of an eye and a home seller needs to make a fast transaction to get to a new job, to get out of debt, or to care for a sick or aging family member. There are many reasons people need a fast sale and that’s okay. With more than 30 years of experience in the real estate industry, I can help you make the most of any market.
Like most decisions in life, there really are many factors to consider when you list your home for sale. Timing isn’t everything, but it’s a lot; other factors to include in the equation are local market conditions, mortgage interest rates, the overall economy, the location of the home, and individual circumstances.
The real estate market in general follows some seasonal patterns.
- Spring (March to May):
- Spring is typically considered a prime time for selling homes in Salt Lake City.
- Warmer weather encourages more people to go out and view properties.
- Landscaping is often at its best this season, adding to a home’s curb appeal.
- Summer (June to August):
- Summer can also be a good time to sell, as families often prefer to move during the summer months when children are out of school.
- Longer days provide more daylight for home showings.
- Early Fall (September to October):
- The early fall season can be a favorable time to sell, with pleasant weather continuing and potential buyers still active.
- Buyers looking to move before the winter months may be motivated.
- Winter (November to February):
- Winter can be a slower period for home sales in colder climates, including Salt Lake City.
- However, serious buyers may still be active, and there may be less competition from other sellers.
In Salt Lake City, the seasons do not appear to have made much difference in the number of homes sold based on data from the Wasatch Front Regional Multiple Listing Service (WFR-MRS).
Local inventory is a great indicator for sellers
The law of supply and demand plays a pivotal role in the real estate market, shaping property values and rental rates. I can certainly advise you on local market conditions when you’re ready to sell your Salt Lake City home, but it doesn’t hurt to learn how we determine whether we are in a buyers’ market, a sellers’ market, or a balanced market.
When demand exceeds supply, property prices rise. We call that a sellers’ market. Conversely, an oversupply can lead to a buyer’s market with declining prices.
Population growth, economic conditions, and interest rates influence demand, while new construction, zoning regulations, and land availability impact supply. Real estate professionals use these principles to analyze market trends, helping buyers and sellers make informed decisions. Understanding the delicate balance between supply and demand is crucial for navigating the dynamic landscape of the real estate industry.
Learn to calculate ‘market absorption’
Real estate agents use many data sets to determine the real estate market’s health. If you understand a geographic area’s market absorption rate, you will have a better chance of making an informed decision. When is the best time to sell your Salt Lake City home? This is just one more way to take the temperature of what has been one hot market for a few years now.
The following video describes how professionals calculate market absorption and inventory. If you prefer to skip the math, call me and I will send you a report from the Wasatch Front Regional Multiple Listing Service (WFR-MLS).
High interest rates don’t have to be a deterrent
If you’re a home seller in Salt Lake City, it’s easy to understand how nationwide mortgage rates might have you running scared. You do (obviously) have to have someplace to live after you sell. High interest rates might be holding you back but they won’t stay high forever and the option to refinance is always open.
On Nov. 28, 2021, the average 30-year fixed-rate-mortgage interest was 3.10%. By Nov. 23, 2022, it was at 6.58 percent. On Nov. 22, 2023, the rate was at 7.29% (and it had already fallen three weeks in a row). But, that’s the thing about interest rates, they do go down (always). Be conscious of the rates, but look at a deal from every direction. There are ways to offset the extra interest. Your real estate agent can advise you.
Sellers have a slight advantage in Salt Lake City, Utah despite record-high mortgage rates. It would make sense for sales to slow down, causing prices to tumble. That hasn’t happened to an alarming degree in Salt Lake City. Utah’s home inventory is dangerously low. On Nov. 28, 2023, the estimated home inventory was 2.23. That means that if nobody listed another home for sale, Salt Lake City would sell out in two months. That makes your home for sale a rare gem.
In many areas, sellers have the upper hand because they’ve got what everybody wants. So, consider that you might receive a premium offer that will easily help mitigate the cost of your new home loan. If you’re not planning to buy after you sell, it’s a good time to cash in on a bundle of equity; and, that brings us to the topic of capital gains taxes.
Could your capital gains cause some capital pains?
In 2023, U.S. News & World Report ranked Utah the #1 state in the nation with the country’s #1-rated economy; Utah also ranked #1 for employment. The state was named the second-best in the country for growth, with the seventh-best employment.
Utah’s capital, Salt Lake City, is the heart of this top-rated state. We’ve had some growing pains. Forbes recently reported online that from 2020 to 2022, the median sales price of a home in Utah increased nearly 50%. I suppose your circumstances would best decide whether or not that’s good news or bad news for you.
If you are a homeowner and you’re ready to sell, you could have earned a significant amount of equity. That’s great news, don’t shy away from that, but do talk with your accountant about possible tax implications. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Know your investment and savings options early (many are deadline-driven).
Even if your profit exceeds the capital gains tax-free limit, a solid professional can advise you on the blessings of the 1031 Exchange. There are many ways to safely and legally protect your profits and the 1031 Exchange is just one of them.
If you feel lost, please call me at 801-673-3333. I don’t have all the answers, but I know right where to find them.
The best time to sell your Salt Lake City home is …
In truth, the best time to sell your Salt Lake City home is when you are ready to sell. If you have an urgent need to sell, we can work with that.
If you wait until interest rates drop, you could sell your home for more money; the replacement cost could be much higher too. Timing is crucial. Circumstances could force you to make a move before the market is prime to buy or sell (whichever you require). There are ways to mitigate market conditions but start with the best possible market if you can.
Focus on cleaning the home, de-junking, maintaining the yard, and making minor repairs to prepare when the time is right. If you hire me, I provide many of those services for free.