Spring has finally sprung, and the Knock team could not be more excited. Leaves on the trees, more sunlight and warmer days are headed our way!
You may have heard that home prices change drastically depending on the season. And they truly do! While prices and demand have been steadily rising in Metro Atlanta over the last few years, we experience peaks and dips during different months.
In honor of the spring equinox this week, we took a look at how the seasons affect the Metro Atlanta real-estate market. We broke it down by county (Cobb, Dekalb, Forsyth, Fulton and Gwinnett) so you can get an accurate picture of how the changing seasons might affect you as a seller.
Cobb: Sellers get lucky in spring
Winter – Cobb County sellers who transact in the winter months see the lowest return, and they experience the longest days on market. In 2016, wintertime sellers made a median of $218,563 — significantly under the $235,000 median price we saw in Cobb for the entire year. It also took these owners 72 days to receive offers on their properties.
Spring – When spring rolls around, the time properties spend on the market significantly drops and prices go way up. In 2016, homes sold in 49 days. This is also the only season in Cobb when we see prices rise above the annual median. Last year, that springtime median was $245,500.
Summer – Prices dip each year as summer rolls around in Cobb County, but last year — they didn’t go down by much at all. In 2016, homes sold for a median of $234,417, which is just under the annual median. On another front, we do see that Cobb County homes sell the fastest in the summertime.
Fall – As the temperature starts to cool down, the market does, too — but just slightly. In 2015, prices went down 3% from summer to fall. In 2016, prices only went down by 0.7% as the seasons changed. It’s a different story when we talk about days on market. Each year, they went up by at least 10 days as summer turned to fall.
Best and worst months to sell: In terms of pricing, June is the best month to sell a property in Cobb County. If we’re talking about shortest amount of time it takes to sell a house, July is ideal.
Dekalb: Autumn wasn’t too bad last year
Winter – Dekalb properties that sell in the winter go for the lowest amount, and they also take the longest to sell. They made 12.6% less than the annual median price of $223,000, and it took 66 days for sellers to receive offers on their houses last year.
Spring – Springtime is the most beautiful time for Dekalb sellers. Homes that sell during this period go for the most amount of money, and they go the fastest. In 2014, these properties sold for a median of $237,233 and went in 50 days. In 2016, we saw those homes sell for $238,360 and receive offers within 48 days.
Summer – Prices dipped in the summer of 2014 and 2015, but still remained above their respective annual medians. In those years, summer was the second-best season for homeowners to yield a good return on their properties. That wasn’t the case in 2016. Prices dropped -6.6% from what we saw in the spring, and days on market crept up to 50 days.
Fall – Fall was a surprisingly good season for sellers last year. We saw prices drop significantly in 2014 and 2015 — well below the annual medians. In 2016, sellers made $224,333 and their properties sold in 55 days.
Best and worst months to sell: May is consistently the best month for sellers in Dekalb County. Both last year and in 2015, May brought in a median of $255,000. Meantime, houses that sell in June see the fastest transaction time.
Forsyth: January and February are tough on sellers
Winter – Forsyth homes sold during wintertime went for the least amount, and took the longest amount of time to sell. Each year, these properties go for significantly less than the annual median price. Last year, the annual median price was $308,000 – and properties that sold in winter went for $289,010. And get this — homes that sold in February 2016 actually took an average of 88 days to receive offers. Add the average 45 days it takes for buyer financing to go through and that is one long, drawn out process.
Spring – Springtime is the most lucrative time for Forsyth sellers. This is the time of year when owners make the most on their properties. In 2015, the median price of homes sold in the spring went for $296,833; and in 2016, they went for $316,667.
Summer – In 2015 and 2016, prices dipped in the summer — dropping below the annual median. This was not the case in 2014, when prices stayed relatively the same as they did in the spring. Overall, it takes summertime sellers in Forsyth approximately two months to receive offers on their properties.
Fall – As summer turned to fall in 2014 and 2015, median prices went down in Forsyth. In 2016, pricing remained relatively unchanged — going up by just 0.3%. Once again, sellers are left waiting a significant amount of time to receive offers. In fall 2016, they waited an average of 71 days.
Best and worst months to sell: May and June yield the highest return for sellers in Forsyth County. In 2016, June sellers received a median of $327,500 for their properties.
Fulton: Summertime properties go faster than the others
Winter – No surprise here. From 2014 to 2016, Fulton properties that sold in winter months went for the least amount, and they took the longest to receive offers. Each year, however, we saw prices spike up significantly in March. This makes a lot of sense. Homebuyers might be putting shopping on hold until it gets warmer out, which is exactly what happens in March!
Spring – In 2015 and 2016, median home prices were highest during the spring months. In the spring of 2016, we saw homes going for a median of $284,333 — considerably more than any other season. We saw another interesting trend here. In spring 2015, properties sold within 54 days. In 2016, it took springtime sellers 4 days longer to receive offers on their homes.
Summer – Fulton homes that sold in the summer went the fastest. Going in 64 days in 2014; 54 days in 2015; and going slightly back up to 56 days in 2016. In 2015 and 2016, prices dipped as we transitioned from summer to fall. Last year’s summertime sellers received a median price of $271,883.
Fall – We typically expect to see a big drop in prices as summer leaves us each year, but that wasn’t the case last year. In fall 2016, Fulton properties were going for a median of $271,517 — dropping a mere 0.1% from summertime prices.
Best and worst months to sell: Overall, June and July tend to be great months for sellers. Prices are high, and days on market aren’t as lengthy as we see in other months. Last year, Fulton homes that sold in June were on the market for 48 days, and in 2015 – they were on the market for 50.
The two coldest months—January and February—are consistently where we see the lowest prices in Fulton County. And from December to March, sellers can expect to wait a longer while to receive offers on their properties.
Gwinnett: December is shockingly good to sellers
Winter – As is the case in the other counties, Gwinnett homes take the longest to sell in wintertime and sellers receive the lowest prices. Last year, sellers received just $189,262 and had to wait a whopping 77 days to receive offers on their properties.
Spring – While prices go up significantly as winter transitions into spring, this isn’t the best time to sell in Gwinnett. Last year, the median price increased 8.1% to $204,653. We see pretty consistently that springtime sellers wait about two months to receive offers on their homes.
Summer – Ah, summer! Properties that sell in summertime go the quickest, year-over-year. And last year, sellers who sold during this time of year, received the highest median price at $206,667.
Fall – This is where things get interesting in Gwinnett County. In fall 2014 and 2015, autumn sellers received the highest return. In fall 2016, prices dipped just a tad – by 0.8%. Despite pricing going up or staying relatively the same, days on market went up significantly.
Best and worst months to sell: This was a major surprise to us, but December sellers actually see the highest return in Gwinnett County! In 2015, they sold their properties for $195,000 – and in 2016, the properties went for $215,000. This is significantly higher than the annual median we saw each of those years ($187,838 in 2015 and $202,500 in 2016).
January and February are — no shocker — consistently the toughest months for Gwinnett sellers.
When should you sell?
Although spring and summer months tend to yield the highest return for Metro Atlanta sellers, not every seller can wait until those seasons to transact. Whether it’s a new job, a change in family size or a change in income — life happens. Regardless of when you’re selling, if you price strategically, you’ll still get a great return. To learn how Knock does it and guarantees to sell homes within 42 days or less, read up on our strategy.