A Zillow Seller Strategies Report gives sellers information they need to price their home, time their sale, and prepare it for the market. They used a nationwide survey gathered between September 9, 2020, and May 25, 2021.
While we don’t encourage sellers to use Zillow, sometimes they publish reports based on their experience that help sellers. To learn more about Zillow, read our blog post titled, Zillow Offers Review.
Home Sellers Strategies 2021
Here are the highlights of their report.
List Your Home on a Thursday
The best time to list a home for sale is on a Thursday: For psychological reasons, more sales occur on Thursdays nationwide. The best Thursday of the year is the one before Labor Day. Here’s what their national survey revealed:
So far, nearly half of American homes sell in less than a week in 2021;
- Nationwide, 21% of all homes are listed on a Thursday. In some markets, it gets as high as one-third of the homes; and
- Homes listed on a Thursday sell quicker and above list price than any other day.
Why Thursday? Look at this from a buyer’s perspective. Weekends are more convenient to look for homes, especially for working people and students. By listing on a Thursday rather than sooner in the week gives buyers less time to preview and creates urgency.
Why an urgency? Psychologically, new listings just before a busy weekend may sell faster because they are “fresh”. So, buyers feel a sense of urgency.
Sundays are the worst day to list your home for sale. Sunday listings tend to stay on the market for a week longer than those listed on a Thursday. It makes sense, a Sunday listing must wait for the next weekend for more buyers. By then, it becomes “stale” compared to a recent Thursday listing on the following weekend.
Best Times to List Varies by Market
San Diego, according to the report, indicates homes listed in October stay on the market longer than any other month. On the other hand, April – May have the greatest likelihood to sell above the listing price.
Seasonally, Spring and Summer Sell More Homes
It makes sense, parents dislike moving their children while school is in session. It disrupts their education and creates stress when they suddenly leave their friends and school.
In addition, with kids off for their summer break, it’s easier to relocate. Plus, it gives parents more time to preview homes with their children. Also, the weather is better for home shopping.
When You Should Consider a Price Cut
The report also revealed that certain months experienced more price cuts in 2021 than others. Here are highlights:
- March of 2021 experienced 8.5% of listed homes making at least one published price cut;
- January typically experiences nationwide price cuts where homes remained on the market for 25 days with no sales. Winter listings give buyers more time to evaluate whether they want to pay the listing price. Similarly, sellers re-evaluate the listing price when the listing becomes “stale”; and
- Nationwide in 2021, January homes sold faster after a price cut than during the same time in 2020.
San Diego Exception to Price Cuts
However, San Diego from November 2019 as of March 2021 did not experience price cuts, according to the report.
Also, the report revealed that San Diego only experienced price cuts when homes stayed on the market from 25 to 30 days which only occurred in March 2019 and in March 2020.
Features that Help Homes Sell Faster
The COVID-19 pandemic changed buyers’ preferences, according to the report. Bathroom amenities and luxury kitchens became “pandemic must-haves”. Here are the highlights:
- Home’s advertising bathroom amenities and a high-end kitchen sold for more in 2020;
- Otherwise, high-end custom home features resulted in slower sales; and
- Advertised fixer-uppers sold for 13% less in 2020.
The pandemic caused Americans to spend more time at home. This meant more cooking, eating, and post-meal business. Luxurious bathrooms and high-end kitchens came into higher demand. These resulted in higher sales prices.
The types of amenities resulting in sale price premiums arousing buyers included:
- Steam ovens (4.9%);
- “Curbless” showers flush with the bathroom floor (3.6%);
- Pizza ovens (3.4%);
- New appliances (3.2%);
- Quartz countertops in bathrooms and kitchens (3.2%);
- Smart appliances (3%); and
- Butcher blocks (2.7%).
The Right Color Increases Sales
The Seattle P.I. daily newspaper published a news story about this study on July 20, 2021. Their story offered insights into the survey and its report. The P.I. interviewed officials involved in the survey who claimed that “homebuyers are sensitive to paint colors”. Buyers expressed that wrongly painted bathrooms, kitchens, and living rooms will discourage them from buying a home.
The same report revealed that certain colors lead to higher offers. Bear in mind, these are nationwide buyers’ preferred colors. Here are the best and worst colors:
Living Room – Best Bet: Gray
Buyers prefer a gray living room wall color. It goes with different colored wall hangings and furniture.
Good alternatives – If gray doesn’t appeal to you, here are alternatives that buyers also like for living rooms:
- Neutral and lighter tones;
- Light green;
- Dark gray; and
- Light yellow.
Colors to avoid – Buyers showed less interest in the following living room colors:
- Bright green; and
- Bright yellow.
Kitchen – Best Bet: White
A white wall appeals to buyers looking at kitchens. Other neutral light colors also appeal to buyers.
Good alternatives – White requires more cleaning as any spill clashes with white. Here are other colors buyers like on kitchen walls:
- Off white;
- Light yellow;
- Dark gray;
- Dark red; and
- Dark green.
Avoid these colors – Buyers did not like these bright kitchen wall colors:
- Bright green;
- Bright yellow; and
- Bright red.
Bathroom – Best Bet: Light Blue
Light blue stood out as the preferred color by buyers for bathrooms. They claimed they would pay more for a house with light blue bathrooms. The report showed a 1.6% increase in sales price nationwide generally.
Good alternatives – Coming in at second, buyers preferred delicate and neutral bathroom colors. Like:
- Dark gray;
- Light yellow; and
Colors to avoid – Basically, bright bathroom colors turn off buyers like:
- Bright yellow;
- Bright green;
- Pink; and
- Bright red.
Bedroom – Best Bet: Dark Blue
Most buyers surveyed liked dark blue bedrooms.
Good alternatives – If dark blue walls turn you off, other options that buyers like include:
- Light blue;
- Bright blue; and
- Dark gray.
Colors to avoid – Buyers don’t like boisterous bedroom colors. Likewise, those surveyed expressed lower desire to buy a house with those colors like:
- Bright yellow;
- Bright green; and
Home Sellers Strategies 2021 – Conclusion
Here are the home sellers’ strategies 2021 offered by a nationwide survey of buyers. In a nutshell, they suggest:
- Listing your home on a Thursday;
- Seasonally, Spring and Summer sell more homes;
- Consider a price cut in a slow market when your listing gets stale; and
- Homes that sell faster are found with upgrades in the bathrooms and kitchen.
In addition, changing the color of certain rooms appeal to nationwide buyers. Painting four rooms certain colors increase sales:
- Living room – Gray;
- Kitchen – White;
- Bathroom – Light Blue; and
- Bedroom – Dark Blue.
San Diego Exception to Sales Price Cuts
San Diego between November 2019 and March 2021 did not experience price cuts.
Also, the report revealed that San Diego only experienced price cuts when homes stayed on the market from 25 to 30 days. This only occurred in March 2019 and in March 2020.
Thinking of Listing Your San Diego Home for Sale?
Besides painting four rooms, the way buyers might like, consider listing with Big Block Realty.
Check out how our unique RealScout program makes it easy for buyers to search for more home features in the local MLS listings. This allows sales listings fitting buyers’ preferences to stick out leading to faster sales. Read how it works at: “How RealScout helps San Diego home sellers 2021”.
Contact us to learn more about our special RealScout sellers’ benefits before choosing a listing agent in San Diego County.
Steven Rich, MBA – Guest Blogger
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