When's the best time of year to buy or sell a NYC apartment? That depends who's asking


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The best time to shop for a New York City apartment depends on your frame of mind and your financial needs. 

A recent StreetEasy data analysis found that the peak home-buying seasons, spring and fall, mean more competition, but also more selection, and greater potential for deals.

It's well-established that New York's apartment sales volume surges during the first half of the year, with the greatest amount of inventory going on the market and selling during the spring. StreetEasy writes that the number of apartments on the market rises again in October, following the summer vacation season and the beginning of the school year. If you're selling an apartment, you'll definitely want to try to have it listed during the first half of the year if possible. Interestingly, the comparatively slow summer and winter months aren't necessarily where buyers will find breaks on asking prices, according to the recent report.

Pro Tip:

Looking for a way to discreetly test the waters before publicly listing your co-op, condo or brownstone? You can test demand, price and marketing strategy by "pre-marketing" your place first. The pre-marketing program at New York City  brokerage Triplemint is a no-risk way to get feedback and offers from actual buyers shopping for a place like yours.  There's no charge to participate and no obligation to sell or enter a traditional listing agreement if you haven't found a buyer by the end of the pre-marketing period.  To learn more, click here. >>

StreetEasy researchers found that although apartments sell more quickly during the peak seasons, spending 10-15 fewer days on the market on average from April to June compared to the rest of the year, prices are 0.3-0.4 percent lower in the spring, and buyers are 10-20 percent more likely to get price cuts on the asking price in the same period. Price cuts are also more prevalent in September and October than during the rest of the year.

That said, sometimes life can't wait. If you end up having to find a place to buy during the slow months, you'll have the consolation of knowing that there are fewer fellow apartment shoppers to contend with.

For more on deciding when to sell your apartment, see our expert advice here. And if you're buying and find yourself in a bidding war, we have tips for how to come out on top here and here.