Hourglass and house symbol with money on table.

By Jennifer Stojanovich

When homebuyers are looking at homes for sale, they are often checking things like the number of bedrooms or even the school district where the home is located. But some homebuyers (and their agents) are looking at less obvious things, too, such as the number of days a home has been on the market, known as “days on market”. In a seller’s market, homes sell faster than usual. That is why some buyers may be hesitant to look at a home that has been on the market for longer than others. But why would the number of days your home has been on the market ultimately affect your sale?
“Days on market” means the number of days that a home has been listed for sale before its status changes to pending. The more recently a home has been listed, the lower its days on market will be.
Homes that just hit the market tend to get the most attention from buyers. But at what point does a home go from being considered “just listed” to being on the market for too long? According to Realtor.com, the national average for days on market in May 2022 was 31 days. That is six days faster than May 2021 and nine days faster than May 2020. In a nutshell, any home that has been listed for more than a month is going to raise suspicions in buyers and their agents. Of course, this also depends on your market and the price of your home.
If you are selling your home and it has been sitting on the market for longer than other homes in your area, then you are no doubt wondering what to do. Fortunately, it does not spell doom – as long as you adjust your strategy. One option is to consider lowering your home’s listing price. In many cases, your home has not sold because the asking price was too high. Real estate markets can change from week to week and adjusting the price may be all it takes to entice potential buyers.
In some cases, your agent may temporarily withdraw your listing from the market. They will then relist it after a certain time period, which sometimes resets your days on market and helps to get your listing in front of new buyers. While relisting your home can work in some instances, your languishing home may need a different strategy to appeal to potential buyers.
Another option is to try making improvements to your home. This could include cosmetic changes such as new paint, updated fixtures, or refurbished landscaping. Make sure to take new photos that reflect the changes you’ve made. Understanding market conditions is key to picking the right strategy.