Homeowners often ask if there is a best time to list their home.  Homes are no different than anything else in that you will receive the most money when the demand is high, and the supply is low.  Think about selling a boat in the winter or a sports car when it is snowing.  The supply might be low, but there is not a high demand.  In the north end of Seattle, we continue to experience a high demand for homes with a very limited supply of new listings.

November and December are typically our slowest months in real estate.   When the new year begins we start seeing a few listings the first week and then they steadily climb until June or July.  Listing and sales activity typically slow a bit through the end of the summer, pick up in the Fall and then slow again in winter.  One way to gauge a very hot market is that it doesn’t slow down in August or December.

Many people believe that summer is the best time to sell because children are out of school. But, Seattle is a young city where the median age is 37 and many of our home buyers are not are not yet constrained by school schedules and can buy any time of the year.

Other homeowners might think they want to wait until their garden is in full bloom, and that is a great idea, but everyone else’s garden is peaking at the same time.  You may want to list while the bulbs are in bloom but perhaps not wait for the peonies.

I think we are all beginning to lose count of how many “Best of...” lists that Seattle is on. “Best place for young professionals” (Forbes 2017), “# 2 Coolest city” (Forbes 2017), “#6 Best places to live” (U.S. News and World Report 2017), and “Fodor’s 1 of 52 top destinations to go in the world”.

You get the idea—we have been discovered!  How do you take advantage of all the media attention that is helping to bring approximately 500 people per week to the area?  We might complain about the traffic that our new residents bring, but let’s not forget that we are also getting a young, highly educated, well-paid work force who prefer to live near the urban core.

Selling a home takes a lot of preparation (a good Realtor will give you suggestions as to what to do), but it also takes a lot of physical and emotional energy to move.  You want to list your home when you are ready to start your next adventure, whether it be retirement, a bigger or smaller home, or a new community.

Once you know you are ready, then I would suggest listing it as early in Spring as possible.  The number of listings typically peak in June—yes, yards look good and school is out, but you also have more competition then.

We are already starting the year with pent up demand from buyers and the stories of multiple offers and buyers doing pre-inspections and waiving conditions prior to bringing an offer are true.  2018 is starting where 2017 left off-- with high demand and low supply.

No one has a crystal ball telling us when the market is going to slow down.  But I do know that this is the best seller’s market that I have seen in over 25 years of selling real estate in Seattle.

I suggest that if you have been thinking of selling your home for the past couple of years, then you should seriously consider selling it this year.  And if you can put your home on the market this Spring, when there are plenty of buyers and not enough sellers, you may be in the desirable position of having to decide which offer to accept.

Kris Hendricks is a managing broker with Windermere Real Estate/Wall Street Group, Queen Anne office.  206 755-5757 email:  khendri@windermere.com