How Does Days on Market Impact Your Home Sale

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Executive Realty 91362

There are so many real estate terms that sometimes it can make your head spin. If you're not in the real estate industry it can be confusing at times.

When you are involved in the home buying process, “days on market” is a term that might become important. DOM is an abbreviation for days on market, and if you understand this term, you will be able to make better decisions during the transaction.

Maximum Real Estate Exposure has an outstanding resource worth looking at to know more about the importance of DOM in real estate.

Real Estate agents are constantly preaching to their clients the importance of the days on the market. When you're selling or buying a house it is a statistic that should be looked at carefully.

Let's look at the meaning of DOM, and how it can affect you when you sell or buy a home.

What is DOM in Real Estate Listings?

Simply put, days on market is the amount of time the home has been listed for sale. This might not be the total amount of time the home has been listed for, perhaps only including the days it has been marketed by the current real estate agent.

What is CDOM?

If you want to find the total amount of time a property has been listed for you'll want to look at what's called CDOM or cumulative days on market. If a seller has used a different agent previously, the home could have been on the market for an additional period of time.

By taking the current days on market and adding them to the time on the market for the previous listing, you get the CDOM.

Generally, the real estate listings won't show this figure by default, only giving you the days on market.

Looking at the days on market is a great way to see if the home is in a buyers' or sellers' market. If others in the same area find buyers quickly, there is more demand for homes. This is a sellers’ market, and buyers can expect more competition when they make an offer on a home.

If a home has a longer DOM, it could mean a buyers’ market with more property available than people looking to buy. With less demand, a seller might be more interested in accepting lower offers on their home.

You can sometimes get strange differences based on the price range the home is in. Homes within one price range could be in a sellers’ market, whereas homes in a different price range could be in a buyers’ market in the same area.

Do Days on Market Affect How Quickly a Home Sells?

When you are selling a home, how long the property remains on the market should influence your selling decisions.

If you find that your home is still listed and looking for a buyer beyond the average DOM in your area, you might need to make changes. This could mean lowering your asking price or finding some other way to attract buyers.

Your real estate agent should be able to advise you about whether lowering the price or offering other inducements will work best for your home sale.

As a buyer, the days on market should show you whether you'll need to move quickly to secure the home you want, or it could indicate if a great deal is possible.

When the homes in the area have a short DOM, it will be more difficult to get the deal you want. Sellers will be less likely to give potential buyers a good deal or make concessions, and in fact, it's more likely to be the buyers that we need to make concessions. This might mean a buyer has to give up some contingencies or increase their bid to secure the property they want.

A home with more days on market could indicate a seller who is more motivated and willing to be flexible. There could be other reasons, however, for a home that has a high DOM.

Perhaps the home is listed for more than it's worth, or it has something that is putting off other buyers.

Is it a Good Idea to Relist a Home?

If a home hasn't sold within the average DOM for the area, relisting is an option. This is normally only a good idea if you have made changes to improve its appeal. If you remodel, or make other improvements, relisting again a few months later can be a good choice.

However, it is normally a better idea to simply list the home for the correct price in the first place. This will prevent your home from sitting in the listings for too long and having to drop your price.

If you do end up reducing the price, it may a good idea to relist the property at the same time. Some MLS systems will reset the clock back to zero days on the market when doing so.

It will make the house appear like it has been on the market for a shorter period of time.

When you are buying a home, you should be sure to check the cumulative days on market. This will show you if the seller has taken the property off the market for a short time to make it appear that they aren't having difficulty selling.

An excellent buyer's agent will do this kind of research for you. It will be part of formulating an offer.

Listing Statuses Also Matter

It is essential to note that there are different listing statuses in multiple listing systems across the country. Two of the most common are contingent and pending.

As a real estate agent, the status you choose can have a bearing on the DOM. For example, in some states including Massachusetts, if you mark a home as contingent, the days on market continue to increase.

It is as if the home is still for sale even though it isn't as a contract has been accepted. Many savvy real estate agents will instead choose to make the home pending instead.

Final Thoughts on DOM

DOM is an essential statistic to look at whether you are a home buyer or seller. It can help gauge where an offer should be placed on a home or when a price reduction is needed.

Posted by

Bill Gassett is a thirty-two year veteran to the real estate industry. He enjoys providing helpful information to buyers, sellers and fellow real estate agents to make sound decisions. His work has been featured on RIS Media, National Association of Realtors, Inman News, Placester, RESAAS, Credit Sesame and others.

Comments (3)

Gwen Fowler-864-710-4518 SC * Mountain* Lake*Home
Gwen Fowler Real Estate, Inc - Walhalla, SC
Gwen Fowler Real Estate, Inc.

I remember when the average DOM in this area was 3-6 months.  Now, if the DOM is above 3 and it is not under contract we wonder why.  Great market for sellers.

Feb 17, 2022 07:43 AM
Bill Gassett

No doubt about that Gwen. Some real estate agents who have gotten into real estate in the last few years have no idea what a more balanced real estate market looks like. Those times will probably be back again in then next year or so.

Feb 17, 2022 08:01 AM
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Hello Bill and thanks for a great blog to share with us here in the Rain.  Make it a great day!


Feb 17, 2022 07:52 AM
Kathy Streib
Cypress, TX
Home Stager/Redesign

HI Bill- I'm not an agent but I do look at DOM and especially when we've been looking for our own home.  It's changed so much in the last few years with DOM decreasing with every month. I remember one of the first vacant stagings I did back in 2008. The condo had been on the market for over a year. 

Feb 17, 2022 06:57 PM
Bill Gassett

You are not alone Kathy. Asking the days on market is one of the most popular questions among home buyers.

Feb 25, 2022 06:05 AM