The term “days on market” has become so commonly used that you’ll hear not only real estate agents use it, but also buyers and sellers!
“Days on Market” (DOM) refers to the amount of time a property has been available to buyers. Most Multiple Listing Services (the databases in which real estate agents warehouse property listings) calculate DOM and prominently display that information for members to see.
Your real estate agent can tell you average “days on market” for homes of a particular type, price range, style, or geographic area.
It is also important to note an agent’s average days on market for their listings. Why? The lower the agent’s days-on-market number, the more quickly their listings sell. Agents with low days-on-market numbers are generally more tuned into the market; they have a more aggressive marketing plan and a more accurate pricing strategy.
My days on market average is 32. The current market average is 74.
The second number that is important when looking at agents to list your home is the “list to sales price ratio”. This is a percentage figure, based on the original list price of the home, compared to the final sale price. As an example, if an agent has a 98% list-to-sale ratio, a home originally listed for $500,000 would likely sell for $490,000. If an agent’s ratio is only 92%, that same home would likely sell for $460,000. That’s a $30,000 difference.
My list to sales price ratio is 98.6%.
Be sure to ask for an agent’s entire DOM average—sometimes an agent’s listings expire (Not enough marketing? Priced too high?) and they will put the home back on the market again as a “new” listing. This can give you a false sense that the agent was doing their job, when in reality their listing sat on the market twice—and much longer than it should have. Additionally, when asking about list-to-sale ratios, make certain that the agent shows you their personal statistic based on original list price. Sometimes there will be many price reductions before a home finally sells—you want to know that your agent is pricing correctly from the beginning and obtaining a high list-to-sell ratio, rather than obtaining a high ratio only after the price is reduced several times to where it should have been in the first place.