Selecting the right time to put your home on the market is definitely an art: a combination of educated guess and luck that can feel overwhelming as you go back and forth weighing your options. To make the educated guess more educated and less guess, I recommend paying attention to information that measures housing market strength and/or weakness.
So! The Kansas City Market. What’s going on here? I went to the Kansas City Regional Association of Realtors and Heartland MLS to look at some of the key numbers that suggest how our area is trending to make educated assumptions on what the future holds.
I compared the 2017 and 2018 data for Johnson County, Kansas in the following areas: Days on Market, Average Sale Price, the Percentage of List Price, and the Number of Homes on the Market. Here’s what I found. While July looks to be the month when your home will be on the market for the least amount of days, June is the month when the average sale price is highest. May & June are the months when you are most likely to get your asking price. The biggest jump in inventory occurred both years from May to June…I think this is interesting because you have to wonder if it’s better to list when there are less homes on the market competing or better to list when buyers know it’s a “target rich” environment providing more selection. Either way, neither May or June was the month with the most houses on the market. That honor goes to September for both years!
Hopefully these numbers will help you get a feel for the Kansas City housing market, especially Johnson County, KS. You are probably not surprised to learn the data supports that May, June, & July are the smartest months to get out there. If the timing works, you can feel confident with choosing to list then. Having said that, our market has not been too shabby the rest of the year either. There is talk that mortgage rates may go up to 5.5% in 2019…definitely a factor to consider and talk to your lender and real estate agent about.
Days On Market (DOM): pretty self explanatory and important because buyers use it to gauge the “freshness” of a listing, and sellers should use it to figure out if they are priced well. If a home has a DOM that is quite a bit higher than the neighborhood’s average DOM, it’s probably time for the seller to re-evaluate and understand why the house is not getting offers (or getting offers below asking). Here in the KC Metro area from 2017-2018, DOM decreased by an average of 5 days, meaning it got even better to be a seller from 2017 to 2018.
Average & Median Sale Price: Quick math refresher! Median is taking all the home sale prices, arranging them in order from lowest to highest, and picking the value right in the middle…half of the homes are less, half are more. If you remember your math from grade school, average is taking all the sale prices, adding them up, and dividing that number by the total homes you had in your data set. Many people think median sale price is a truer representation of the market than average sale price because median is not skewed by outliers (homes that sell well below or well above the typical home in the neighborhood). Both are useful when you are trying to determine what to list your house for. I used average for this article because the large area I am including (all of JoCo) has a large data set so is less likely to be skewed by outliers.
Percentage of List Price: This is taking the final sale price (what the buyer paid for the home) and dividing it by the list price (how much the seller was asking for the home). It’s a number expressed as a percentage. When the percentage is above 100%, the home sold for more than it was listed for. When it is below 100%, the home sold for less than it was listed for. Taking the average of Percent of List Price for a neighborhood helps buyers and sellers understand how to negotiate pricing.
Number of Homes on the Market: This is simply how many homes are for sale each month. The past 2 yeas in KC, the inventory has fluctuated from a high of 9,097 in September of 2017 to a low of 5,852 homes in February of 2018.