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Study: Fall is when home buyers can find the best deals

The Washington Post logo The Washington Post 9/15/2021 Michele Lerner
a sign in front of a building: Depending on where they’re shopping for a home, buyers will see a sweet spot — more homes for sale, lower prices and less competition from other buyers — sometime between this week and Oct. 17. © Charles Krupa/AP Depending on where they’re shopping for a home, buyers will see a sweet spot — more homes for sale, lower prices and less competition from other buyers — sometime between this week and Oct. 17.

Every individual home buyer needs to determine when it’s the right time to purchase a property based on their financial situation and lifestyle. At the same time, buyers typically hope to find that ideal moment when they can find a home that matches their hopes and dreams for the best possible price. —

Spring and summer are typically the most competitive seasons for buyers — and some look for a home in the winter. But fall is the time when buyers will find the best deals of the year, according to Realtor.com.

According to the listing site’s analysis, buyers face 18 percent less competition in the ideal buying week in their market compared with the peak week in summer and 6 percent less competition than an average week. Realtor.com estimates that buyers can save as much as $10,000 on a median-priced home during the “best” week compared with the summer peak. Listings are up 31 percent on average during the ideal week compared with an average week during the year. Homes stay on the market a bit longer during the best week, which means buyers will have an average of seven extra days to consider whether they want to make an offer.

Depending on where they’re shopping for a home, buyers will see a sweet spot — more homes for sale, lower prices and less competition from other buyers — sometime between this week and Oct. 17.

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The optimal week to shop for a home in most markets across the United States is the week of Oct. 3-9, according to Realtor.com’s analysis.

But, like pretty much everything about real estate, the best week varies by location. For buyers in New York, Los Angeles, Boston, Denver, Detroit, Minneapolis and Portland, the optimal week to shop is this week.

In the D.C. metro area, the best week starts Sept. 19. Realtor.com anticipates active listings to be up 14 percent compared with the peak week of the year and the number of days a home takes to sell is expected to be up by 49 percent. The median listing price for homes is anticipated to be 4.8 percent lower than the peak week.

The peak for home buyer demand is usually in July. Realtor.com anticipates approximately 705,000 listings to be on the market in October across the United States, which is about 100,000 more than in July, as long as 2021 follows the typical seasonal pattern.

More home sellers tend to reduce their listing price during the best week to buy, with an average of 7 percent of sellers dropping their price. That could mean about 50,000 homes nationally will have a reduced price. The analysis is based on listing data since 2018 that compares available homes and the number of buyers in the market.

For the full report, click here.

Read more in Real Estate:

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