Can You “Time the Market”?

Can You Time the Market?
Historical Contract Data in the Reserve in McLean, VA 22102
Is it possible to time the market?
Recently a neighbor asked, have we missed the opportunity to list our property and get a contract/sell it this year?  I based my answer on some generalizations and what we typically see in the real estate industry.  Generally, we see more properties come on the market in the Spring and a peak in sales and closings in June and July of each year.   However, there are 2 schools of thought.  If you list a property in an “off”season like the Fall or Winter, there will be less inventory and thus less competition for properties on the market.
Many families with children prefer to buy in the summer, so they can move and settle in before the beginning of the school year.  But, there are people who have to buy in the “off” months because of necessity or perceive more value in properties  on the market in the “off” seasons (i.e. that property prices are lower).
So can you really time the market?  What you need to do is price your home properly for current market conditions.  This means that you need to consider the following:
(1) recent sales of comparable properties,
(2) sold prices of recently sold comparable properties,
(3) how long they were on the market and any price changes,
(4) comparable properties currently under contract, their list prices, any price adjustments, and how long they were on the market,
(5) comparable properties currently on the market, their list prices, any price adjustments, and how long they have been on the market,
(6) comparable properties that were taken off the market, their list prices, any price adjustments, and how long they were on the market,
(7) how many comparable properties sold in the past 6 months,
(8) how many comparable properties are currently under contract, and
(9) how many comparable properties are currently on the market.
The last 3 numbered items will tell you about the balance of the market – whether it is a buyers’ or sellers’ market.
I decided to look into it further for my neighborhood (the Reserve in McLean, VA) and see if the data supports this argument.   I pulled all the historical sales data for the Reserve including the contract dates and this is what I found.
Below is a link to a pdf file containing the raw data.
Some years show peak numbers (of contracts) in the Spring, and some actually show peak numbers in the Summer, Fall and/or Winter months.  Some showed no peak month.  There does not seem to be any clear pattern.  I don’t see any month that stands out over others with more contracts, but rather I see a pretty even distribution throughout the months of the year and a different peak month year to year.  Each year is different and there is no consistency. And, of course, historical data doesn’t always predict what will happen in future years.
Based on this information, it is clear that you can not time the market and you should look at the current market conditions as outlined in the above-list.
If you have any questions about this post, the real estate market in McLean, or just want to work with a knowledgeable and experienced real estate agent, please contact me at 703-403-8225 or taniahosmer@gmailcom.

2 Responses to “Can You “Time the Market”?”

  1. 1 real estate training
    September 12, 2011 at 1:13 pm

    You’re going to identify two things about your marketing content. The first is to identify the major problem or pain that your content will help the recipient avoid? The second is to identify the most compelling benefits about your content to the recipient. So, pain avoidance and benefits are your headline’s focus. The interesting thing about headlines is that pain avoidance is actually more enticing to people than benefits.

  2. September 20, 2011 at 5:11 am

    Lender REOs remain one of the favourite strategies for the late-night infomercial gurus, but the reality is that the lenders are neither foolish nor benevolent. Although these nonperforming loans are a negative on their balance sheet, they’re not going to sell a property below its market value just to get it off their books.

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“it’s not your father’s real estate market anymore” ®

Tania Hosmer

Tania grew up in Northern Virginia and is a life long resident of the area. She has lived in McLean, Virginia with her husband and 2 children since 2001. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Physics from Mary Washington College and an MBA in Finance from The George Washington University. Tania began her real estate career over 20 years ago. In addition to real estate sales, her experience includes managing residential renovation projects in the greater Washington area, planning and overseeing new residential construction and managing rental properties. After completing her MBA in 1996, she joined CIG International (a Washington-based residential real estate investment firm) as Vice President where she conducted extensive due diligence investigations of real estate investment opportunities and oversaw ongoing investment projects. Tania became a residential real estate agent in 2006.

Contact Information:

Tania Hosmer
Keller Williams Realty
6820 Elm Street, Suite 100
McLean, Virginia 22101
cell: 703-403-8225
email: taniahosmer@gmail.com
website: www.taniahosmer.com

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If your home is currently listed with another broker, this is not intended as a solicitation of that listing.

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