Quora user asks a real estate question: Is this a good time to sell your house?

Vicki Moore
Vicki Moore
Published on January 5, 2019

Quora user wants to know

My answer to a question like “Is now a good time to sell my house?” is: It depends. Is he asking about this year? This month? This season? He didn’t say.

Giving advice about when to sell your house brings up a lot of questions for me like:

Why are you selling?

I would want to know why you’re considering selling. The reason really matters. Maybe you’re thinking about selling because of assumptions that are wrong or on the advice of someone who shouldn’t be giving you that kind of advice.

Sharp Park Golf Course, Pacifica

The Bully

I got a call from a home owner who wanted to talk about selling her house. I went out there to talk with her and after a few minutes, I learned that it wasn’t she that wanted to sell, it was her son. He was misinformed and didn’t understand the process, the costs in selling or the tax ramifications. He was a bully and was pushing her into selling. It wasn’t good for her. I didn’t want any part of that.

What time of year are you planning on selling?

A local realtor should be able to tell you the best time of the year to sell in your area. The time of year is relevant to getting more/less money. There are some months where you typically will sell for a higher price than others – typically Spring will bring you more money.

If you’re thinking about now, as in winter, no, it’s not the best time. There are fewer people willing to go out into the cold, rainy, or snowy weather which limits the number of people who will see your house. More people and warm weather is better when you’re selling.

Yes, serious buyers will be out there no matter the time of year but not as many serious buyers will be out in bad weather.

Sometimes in the Pacifica real estate market, the end of January is awesome. We’ve seen some incredibly quick sales for high dollars but overall January is not the best month to sell.

Rockaway Beach, Pacifica

Where’s the house?

Real estate markets are microcosms. In other words, they’re local. You can look at the nationwide real estate market, state market, county, city, neighborhood…they all could be different and more than likely are different.

Local Real Estate Market Conditions

If you have concerns about your real estate market, you need to talk to a local realtor. Your market is going to be different than any other.

Nationwide, homes are expected to increase 4.8% in value during 2019. That’s nationwide – your neighborhood may be different, very different – could be a lot more or a lot less.

How long have you owned it?

Knowing my market and knowing when you bought the property gives me insight into how much you likely paid for the home. If there’s been a big upswing in the market, I can get an idea of how much equity you’ve gained since you purchased.

How much do you owe?

Finding out how much you owe on the property – along with when you bought it – will tell me if you can afford to sell – if you’ve got enough equity, or if you’ll have to put money into the sale to pay off your mortgage.

What do you expect to sell it for?

What you expect to sell the property for will tell me if you’re reasonable in your expectations or if your needs and expectations are too high for the reality of what your home will sell for.

Where are you going?
How long will you be there?
Is there a chance that you’ll move back?

If you’re going to the new location for a short time or there’s a chance you’ll move back, perhaps renting the property is a better option.

If you plan to buy a home in the new location, and you don’t need the funds from this house to buy that new home, again, renting might be a good option.

Is there any work that needs to be done on the house?
Will you be doing that work?

If there’s work that needs to be done on the house and you choose to do that work, that’s going to add to your overall sale expenses.

If you’re not going to do the work, that helps me in determining a likely sale price.

My Final Answer

A good, solid answer requires more information; however, I would say that, in general, if you don’t have to or need to sell, then don’t. Real estate is a good investment in most parts of the country. It has built the wealth of many people – some are famous and some aren’t but the fact is that it can be a valuable part of your financial security.

Are you thinking of buying a home or selling your North Silicon Valley home?

If you haven’t hired a North Silicon Valley real estate agent yet, contact me. I’d be happy to help you navigate today’s Pacifica real estate market!

About the author:  The above post Is this a good time to sell your house?” was provided by Vicki Moore of RE/MAX Star Properties. 

With over 20 years of experience, if you’re thinking of selling or buying, we’d love to share our knowledge and expertise.

We service the following North Silicon Valley areas: San Bruno, Millbrae, San Mateo, Foster City, Redwood City, Pacifica, Burlingame, Belmont, San Carlos.

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