January 2020

Off-peak Sales as a Percentage of Peak Sales

Off-peak Sales as a Percentage of Peak Sales

This horizontal bar chart shows the four best and four worst performing states by their off-peak sales as a percentage of their peak season sales. The off-peak season is defined as November through February, the peak season is defined as May through August. The sales data was calculated using the average number of sales from 2014 to 2018.
State Avg. Annual Sales Avg. Off-peak Season Sales Avg. Peak Season Sales Off-peak Season Sales' Percent of Peak Season Sales
National 5,953,033 1,637,839 2,303,565 71.10%
Hawaii 20,902 6,510 7,178 90.69%
Arizona 172,596 50,030 62,226 80.40%
Florida 578,609 169,159 211,678 79.91%
Nevada 76,526 21,958 28,430 77.24%
New Mexico 35,655 10,150 13,296 76.34%
New York 204,233 59,690 78,194 76.34%
Delaware 17,486 5,025 6,601 76.12%
Texas 587,283 166,359 222,418 74.80%
District of Columbia 9,284 2,659 3,564 74.61%
California 490,245 136,124 182,467 74.60%
Alabama 97,809 27,417 36,778 74.55%
Michigan 196,168 55,601 74,605 74.53%
Mississippi 24,778 7,022 9,479 74.08%
South Carolina 116,741 32,441 44,616 72.71%
Louisiana 71,215 19,890 27,399 72.59%
Georgia 215,104 59,723 82,717 72.20%
Utah 78,374 21,581 30,059 71.80%
Tennessee 158,606 43,635 61,106 71.41%
Arkansas 59,798 16,331 22,877 71.39%
West Virginia 9,264 2,520 3,531 71.37%
Maryland 102,346 28,521 40,098 71.13%
New Jersey 132,046 36,888 52,145 70.74%
North Carolina 205,527 56,165 80,086 70.13%
Oklahoma 82,386 22,376 31,994 69.94%
Vermont 12,822 3,531 5,063 69.74%
Indiana 156,691 42,565 61,107 69.66%
Pennsylvania 195,413 53,563 77,069 69.50%
Missouri 127,388 34,620 49,965 69.29%
Kentucky 80,454 21,749 31,506 69.03%
Oregon 86,817 23,240 34,070 68.21%
Wyoming 11,057 2,941 4,364 67.40%
Rhode Island 15,478 4,219 6,270 67.29%
Ohio 208,538 55,111 82,850 66.52%
Virginia 149,336 39,806 59,844 66.52%
North Dakota 14,723 3,954 5,948 66.48%
Colorado 143,714 37,765 57,248 65.97%
Washington 151,649 39,442 60,456 65.24%
Idaho 53,320 13,830 21,208 65.21%
Connecticut 45,621 12,183 18,916 64.41%
Maine 20,745 5,427 8,432 64.37%
Kansas 47,803 12,379 19,288 64.18%
Nebraska 40,457 10,439 16,287 64.09%
Montana 23,119 5,968 9,353 63.80%
Alaska 13,785 3,485 5,570 62.57%
Iowa 67,724 17,351 27,825 62.36%
Illinois 192,592 48,901 79,209 61.74%
Massachusetts 98,622 25,742 41,883 61.46%
New Hampshire 27,595 7,058 11,567 61.02%
Minnesota 109,706 26,832 46,380 57.85%
Wisconsin 109,371 26,534 46,143 57.50%

According to a 2019 report from NAR,Footnote1 not only are the winter sales doldrums less severe than many might have thought, but, depending on your part of the country, off-peak housing sales may be reasonably good.

Nationally, the best selling season is from May through August, with non-seasonally adjusted sales figures equal to 38.7% of a year's total sales.Footnote2 At the opposite extreme, November through February still account for 27.5% of annual sales. This means that the coldest months across the country continue to represent a notable amount — 71.1% of the prime season's sales activity.

The wintertime blues can put you in the black

Let's take a look at the four best and four worst performing states, where, according to the bar graph, their off-peak sales represent a percentage of their peak sales season.Footnote2

As you can see, all of the top four winter sales states are geographically in temperate regions, with their off-peak sales performances ranging from 77% to over 90% of their busiest months' sales. In contrast, the four states in which cold weather sales represent the smallest percentage of spring-summer sales are, not surprisingly, all located in the north, with Wisconsin's winter sales just 57.5% of summer sales.

The obvious conclusion here is that inclement winter weather does have an inhibiting effect on real estate sales.

With that said, it's important to not lose sight of the fact that even in Wisconsin, where winter sales are just a little more than half of warm weather sales, there's still a significant amount of sales activity to keep you busy.

Arizona's off-peak sales of 80.4% of its peak sales is an even better example. In this year-round balmy state, if you sell 5 houses per month during your peak season, you'll sell around 4 houses a month during the non-peak period. The upshot is that while you prepare for the approaching busy season don't miss out on the opportunities presenting themselves right now.

1

Seasonality in the Housing Market. National Association of Realtors®; January 2, 2019; Nadia Evangelou

2

Source data: CoreLogic. Data date: 10/10/2019

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