Whether you are anxiously awaiting a buyer to submit an offer on your land, or you are in the planning stages of selling your property and want to establish a realistic timeline, it’s important to understand how the time of year impacts the offers that you get. Spring is a favorite time to sell both real estate and raw land, but that doesn’t mean it is the only time you’ll be successful. The timing of your sale can directly impact the quality and quantity of the offers that you receive. Consider the pros and cons of selling in different seasons to help you decide the best time to list your property.
Selling in the spring
Spring is undoubtedly the most popular time of year to sell property. The weather in most of the country is beautiful, and it is a common time for people to make a significant change or get a fresh start in their lives, and what better way to do that than invest in land? Buyers are often motivated to buy in the spring because it will allow them to officially enjoy their property in the summer. Chances are, your property will look its best in the spring, making it more attractive to prospective buyers. The pictures of your property during the spring will usually look better than during any other time of year, so it is essential to take great photos during this time.
The one obstacle you may face when selling your home in the spring is that you aren’t the only one who thinks selling land in the spring is a good idea. This could mean you are facing fierce competition during this time.
Selling tips for spring
Because spring is a popular time to buy and sell land, a successful spring sale is all about the marketing. Your photos must pop, your description must be intriguing, and a video tour is also a plus. If you don’t have the equipment, skill or time to make your land listing look incredible, hire someone. Buyers will be browsing hundreds of listings very similar to yours during this season, so it’s important to be creative and intentional about standing out above the competition. Thankfully, the mild temps and fresh new life that come with spring should make it easy to capture stunning shots of your land.
Read more: The Anatomy of the Perfect Land Listing
Selling in the summer
Summer is another popular time to list your land for sale, as buyers are often anxious to buy their land and get to work on it while the days are long and the weather is cooperating. By the end of the summer, as the hunting season comes to a close, buyer activity usually slows down. This means if you are planning to sell during the summer, the earlier the better.
Selling tips for summer
While warmer temperatures and longer days can help get qualified buyers out to your property, there is work to be done to get them interested in the first place. Knowing the best land use for your property and target audience for the property will help you create a solid marketing strategy for the summertime. Are the people buying in your area looking for a place to fish, hunt, or participate in watersports? Knowing your audience and how they plan to use the lot in the summer will help you showcase the features of the land that will matter the most to them during this season.
Selling in the fall
Depending on where your land is located, the fall season can add an element of natural beauty to your lot that will attract qualified buyers. The cooler temperatures make for pleasant and comfortable site tours, and the colorful foliage adds a pop of color to your marketing photos. For hunters, fall is typically not an ideal time to buy land, as hunting season is in full swing and they may have to wait until the following season to hunt on their own land. However, for other buyers, this is a popular time to find a good deal on a great piece of land.
Selling in the fall may mean an extra commitment on your part during a season when your calendar is already packed with commitments. If you plan to do a lot of traveling in the fall, scheduling site tours, meetings, and other obligations may make this a challenge.
Selling tips for fall
In most cases, Mother Nature helps out a lot in the staging your land for sale in the fall. The cooler temps make it a more comfortable time for buyers to tour the land, and the changing colors add instant visual appeal. The fall is a popular time for travel and seasonal events. If there are events and activities happening nearby during this season, include them in your marketing plan. Give buyers the full picture of what they are investing in and what owning this land in the fall would mean for their lifestyle. Take advantage of the cooler weather and get out and make your lot look its best. Plant wildflowers, clean up debris, and trim trees to keep the property looking its best.
Selling in the winter
It has been widely believed that winter is a pointless time to sell property, but this theory has proven less accurate in the decades following the invention of the Internet. Since most buyers start their land search online, the cold weather is unlikely to prevent them from buying property during this time. Yes, they may be less eager to get out and tour the property, but buyers are searching all year round for property. Take advantage of the common misconception that buyers don’t invest in property in the winter and the reduced inventory of land and stand out to the buyers who are looking.
If your land is located in an area that is popular for winter sports and activities, such as skiing, winter is going to be the prime time to show off how your land is the winter wonderland buyers are looking for. Likewise, lots located in areas where it is hot most of the year see a lot of buying activity in the winter when the lower temps make site visits more bearable.
Of course, selling in winter can have its downfalls too. It can be hard to highlight the physical aspects of your property if it is covered in snow or challenging to get to during this time of year.
Selling tips for winter
Winter is the one season where your land looks significantly different than it does during any other time of the year. Make sure to offer interested buyers pictures of how the lot looks year round, to give them the complete picture of what to expect. Buyers may be more inclined to bargain on the price during the winter months since it is typically a slower season for buying land. If possible, be open to flexibility in the price to get your lot sold in the winter.
Why isn’t my land selling?
If your lot has been on the market for a while without any interest, it may be time to analyze what is keeping people from putting offers in on your property. When land isn’t selling, it typically comes down to two factors: Buyers don’t think the lot is worth what you are asking for it or your marketing strategy isn’t reaching the right people.
You can’t just list your home for sale during a specific season and sit back and wait for the offers to come rolling in. You have to create a listing that highlights your property’s best features, and then be relentless in ensuring this listing gets to the most qualified buyers.
Don’t assume that just because temps are dropping and the end of the year is approaching that you’ve missed the window to sell your home. With plenty of patience and planning, a few vacant land photography hacks and a solid marketing plan, you can sell your land regardless of the season.
Originally published 12/7/2018, updated 10/28/2020.