How Long Does it Take to Sell a House?

Written By: Colin King, Seller Experience Manager

April 14, 2019

For many of us, it can take ages to figure out if we’re ready to move on and sell our home. But once you’ve made that tough decision, your next question is likely “How long does it take to sell a house?”

Unfortunately, there’s no simple answer. The average time it takes to sell a home depends on many factors, including your home’s condition, location, the housing market, time of year, etc. Here’s a look at the typical selling process and how long it may take for your house.

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Steps to selling your house

1. Prep the house: To prep for listing, you’ll need to declutter your home, make general improvements like painting and landscaping, and repair any significant issues in your house. This process can take up a good chunk of time, so plan accordingly to avoid delays in your home sale. If you plan on working with a real estate agent to sell your home, use this time to start looking for the right one – click here for tips on finding top real estate agents in your area.

2. List your home: Next, you’ll need to decide on a list price, which could determine how long it takes to sell your home. Look at comparable properties in the area that are currently on the market, pending sale, or recently sold – these data points will help you land on the right number. Also keep in mind that competitively-priced homes tend to sell quickly, while overpriced properties usually spend more time on the market.

3. Open houses and showings: Now it’s time to present your home to the world! In a traditional sale, the average seller will show their house to potential buyers 13 times. Be sure to tidy up before each showing, so your home always makes a great first impression.

4. Accept an offer: If you’re lucky, you’ll receive multiple offers within your desired price range. It can take a lot of back and forth to negotiate the details of an offer, especially if you and your potential buyer aren’t on the same page.

5. Home inspection: The buyer will schedule a home inspection to get a better idea of the home’s condition. If the inspection flags any issues, the buyer may request that you make these repairs yourself or that you cover some of the buyer’s closing costs to cover the cost (this is called a “seller concession” or “a credit toward closing costs.”)

6. Closing: On the official closing date, you and your buyer will finalize the home sale. You’ll both sign the paperwork needed to transfer ownership of the house, as well as exchange the deed and sale funds. And that seals the deal!

Determining your selling timeline

Don’t just cross your fingers and hope for a quick sale. To get an idea of how long it’ll take to sell your house, do some research. Keep an eye on current listings in your area to get a feel for the market. Pay special attention to any recently sold properties that are similar to your home. You can also ask a local real estate agent for their insights.

These trends are a good indicator of the length of time your home might stay on the market. For example, in a seller’s market, there are fewer homes for sale than buyers, so that competition may help your home sell much faster. In a buyer’s market, there are more houses than buyers, so it may take longer to sell your home.

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How to sell your house quickly

If you’re looking to sell and buy a house at the same time, the Perch Buy & Sell service can help. Instead of waiting for your current home to sell before you can buy your new one, Perch gives you the flexibility to shop without your home sale delaying your timeline. We’ll help you make a competitive, non-contingent offer to buy your next home, then sell your current home for top dollar in 90 days or less.

If you’re looking to sell but not buying a new home, Perch can also help you sell with certainty, saving you time and stress. Just spend a few minutes telling us about your home, and you’ll receive a fair, market-price cash offer the next business day. We’ll purchase your house in its current condition with no prep work required. That means you don’t have to spend time making repairs and improvements before selling. You also can avoid the lengthy process of showing your home to dozens of prospective buyers. Our service also allows you to move out on your schedule, so you can line up your closing dates and avoid potential delays, overlapping housing costs, or double moves.

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