At the end of May, we’ve all got summer, barbecues, and parties with family and friends on the brain. Despite these welcome distractions, Americans around this time of year are apparently all about business when it comes to one thing: real estate.
“The Friday before Memorial Day is one of the strongest closing dates of the year,” says Andy Peters, a real estate agent identified by HomeLight as ranking in the top 1% of agents in Atlanta. “Seasonally, May is always a month that lines up in the year where people are going under contract in March and April.”
That makes the last week of May a popular time for closings.
Taking a closer look at this trend, HomeLight dug into historical transaction data around the Memorial Day holiday weekend.
In 2017, 15,211 homes were marked in MLSs across the country as being sold (or closing on) Memorial Day. Compare that to 7,233 homes sold on the Fourth of July of the same year, and 8,103 homes sold on Labor Day 2017. The following Monday in June 2017 had 8,807 sales recorded.
The year prior, the data is even more striking with 24,661 homes sold on Memorial Day 2016.
“I think we have this unwritten rule that for most real estate agents we like to close at the end of the month because interest is paid in arrears,” says Peters. “When people are borrowing money, when they close at the end of May, they don’t make a payment until July. So I think that kind of trend coupled with the right time of the year — and it’s a three-day weekend so people can move — I think that just creates the perfect storm for people. ”
HomeLight data also suggests that homes listed in the days leading up to Memorial Day sell for more than those listed after the holiday.
In 2017, homes listed between Wednesday and Sunday brought in an average sale to list price ratio of 96 percent, compared to those listed on or after the holiday (Monday through Thursday), where homes sold for 85 percent of their asking price on average.
According to Peters, hosting open houses or showings throughout Memorial Day weekend can be totally hit or miss, so set your expectations accordingly.