When we think about the best time to list a home for sale, we tend to land on spring, followed by summer. These are the times when the weather gets warm and families with school-aged children may be more eager to pack up and move. But if you've missed the boat on spring and summer, fear not -- you might have great success putting your home up for sale in the fall.
If you're going to sell in the fall, follow these four important tips.
1. Take photos that capitalize on fall colors
A visually attractive online listing is important when your goal is to get potential buyers interested in your home, so the fall season can truly be your best friend. Fall is when the leaves turn colors and shrubs and trees still look vibrant. So if you'll be selling your home in autumn, aim to hit that peak moment when your front and backyard look like something out of a postcard and snap some photos to feature in your listing.
2. Talk up your excellent school district
During fall, parents are apt to have school on the brain. Capitalize on that by referencing your strong school district in your listing. Even if a family has already enrolled children in another district, kids switch schools all the time, so highlighting yours could be a good way to get a buyer.
Incidentally, a strong district might appeal to a buyer without kids, too, since good schools equate to a good investment.
3. Boost your curb appeal
Even sellers with the nicest landscaping can struggle to list their homes in winter, when all things green tend to disappear. But when you're selling your home in autumn, you still have an opportunity to boost your home's curb appeal. You can add fall flowers, rake your leaves so your lawn doesn't look messy, and put up fall decor, like some welcoming pumpkins on your front porch.
4. List earlier in the season rather than later
Depending on where you live, the first half of fall can be substantially milder than the second half. And that's when you'll want to make a move. Buyers are more likely to drag themselves out to see your home when the weather is brisk but bearable, but if you wait until late October or November, you might miss that opportunity. Instead, aim to get your home listed in late September or early-to-mid-October.
The bottom line
Some real estate professionals will tell you spring, hands down, is the best time to list a home for sale. But the benefit of selling your property in the fall is that you may have less competition, which means your chances of getting your asking price are higher.
The key, however, is to take full advantage of the fall season and get your listing in right before the weather turns cold -- and buyers decide to hibernate for winter.