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October Is the Best Month to Buy a Home, Sales Data Shows

October Is the Best Month to Buy a Home, Sales Data Shows
sam wigness headshot Staff

After a record-breaking summer, homebuyers are headed for the best months to score a deal on a home.

Turns out that October is statistically the best month to buy a home.

Homebuyers, it seems, pay a premium no matter the month. However, they pay much less over market value in fall and winter months than they do in spring and summer, according to ATTOM’s analysis of more than 33 million single-family home and condo sales from 2013-2020.

The study compared median sales price with the median automated valuation model, or AVM, a computerized estimate of home value.

Over the last eight years, homebuyers have paid a 2.9% premium in October compared to a 11.5% premium in May. The lower the premium, the less homebuyers paid over market value.

best month to buy a home

Related: Home Affordability Rankings Reveal the Best Kept Secret in Housing

The best and worst times to buy a home

October is not a slow month for sales by any means, though. It has been one of the busiest months in the last eight years, with just 30,350 fewer sales than May. However, homebuyers pay just $6,000 over the AVM value in October compared to $21,626 in May.

This may be due to sellers being more willing to reduce asking price to avoid being on the market in the winter when home values bottom out.

In terms of paying the smallest premium, December (3.4%), November (3.9%), and January (3.9%) follow closely behind October. According to ATTOM, the best days to buy based on premium are:

Day Premium
December 51.6%
December 262%
January 62.2%
November 92.3%
December 312.4%

Meanwhile, the five worst days to get a deal on a home all fall in May.

Day Premium
May 2317.4%
May 2717.4%
May 2016.6%
May 1615.6%
May 1915.4%

To pay below market value, homebuyers need to be in the right place at the right time. Historically, the opportunities to get the best deal on a home occur in the following states and months:

State/Month Premium
New Jersey/February-4.9%

While the 2020 and 2021 housing markets have been anything but normal, 2021 seems headed for a traditional seasonal downturn, which didn’t happen in 2020. That suggests homebuyers may in fact be in for the best homebuying months of the year — even if the bar for a good deal has been lowered.

Further Reading

Adjustable Rate Mortgages Are Quietly Having a Moment

Home Affordability Rankings Reveal the Best Kept Secret in Housing

Mixed May Jobs Report Won’t Send Mortgage Rates Soaring