“Springtime Home Selling in Northeast Ohio”
As we approach Groundhog Day, during these blistering cold days of winter, we hope that Punxsutawney Phil (the Groundhog) will not see his shadow on Saturday and spring will arrive early. Subzero temperatures are hard to handle and dangerous for all of us. The Groundhog Day tradition comes from a Pennsylvania Dutch superstition that if a groundhog emerges from its burrow and sees its shadow, winter will persist for six more weeks. If it does not see its shadow, spring will come early. We do not believe there is any fundamental proof that this superstition holds any strength, but with the arrival of this week’s temperatures, we are holding on to the optimism that spring is soon to arrive.
Working in the business of helping people buy and sell homes, springtime always gets the most buzz and notoriety. But in reality, who really wants to list their home in the middle of winter with the snow, the ice and most of all, the cold? It is difficult to have your home on the market in winter. The home should be in “showing condition” all the time – everything must be in its place; you should leave your home for all showings venturing out into the cold for a minimum of an hour. If you do not live in your home, then it is not a big deal. But for a good percentage of people, they are living in their home – cooking, eating, playing, sleeping, living.
Personally, we love the diversification of Northeast Ohio weather and the changing landscapes it brings. It is one of the wonderful aspects of living in this area. Therefore, it is always a good time to list your home. The general notion that spring is the best time to sell is becoming increasingly less true. All the rules about timing have disappeared with the invention of digital marketing and online information. The continued reason why most homes are listed in the spring probably is because it is the easiest time to list your home. Once summer begins, so do graduation parties, picnics, vacations, summertime fun. There is a slight pause after summer when kids go back to school and vacations end, but then comes the fall harvest, Thanksgiving and all the winter holidays. Additionally, if weather permits, the spring rains make for beautiful lawns and imagery.
The buyers are out there, and inventory levels continue to be low. We have visited many open houses in Westlake over the past few weekends, and the open house traffic was strong for the amount of snow we have received and the cold we have encountered.
Below are charts of the Historic Active Listings from Jan 2014 through Dec 2018 for Bay Village, North Olmsted, and Westlake.
The cold this week will undoubtedly have an impact. So, we are hoping “Phil” does not see his shadow, at least here in Northeastern Ohio, so we have a shorter winter and a subsequent arrival of spring-like weather.