How Long Does It Take to Sell a House in California?

If you’re looking to sell your California home using a traditional listing process, it’s probably not going to happen overnight. Depending on where you live in the Golden State, your home may be listed for anywhere from one to three months, and additional factors can prolong the sale process even more. Because California is such a diverse marketplace, we need to break it down by region in order to accurately assess the anticipated length of time for your listing.

California Home Listing Estimates by Region

We’ve looked at the most populous counties in the state and ordered them according to population. According to current 2020 market data from Redfin Data Center, here’s how long you can expect your home to remain on the market before closing, on average:

County  Days on market 
Los Angeles  58 days 
San Diego  37 days 
Orange  65 days 
Riverside  62 days 
San Bernardino  63 days 
Santa Clara  44 days 
Alameda  30 days 
Sacramento  27 days 
Contra Costa  38 days 
San Francisco  61 days 

There are some important trends worth noting:

  • Listing times have been rising steadily across the state since 2013. For example, in 2013, L.A. County had a median listing time of 15 days; now the median is 58 days. This upward trend has remained fairly consistent. 
  • San Francisco County has seen an especially sharp rise in listing times over the past year, due primarily to the fast-rising real estate costs in the area.
  • These numbers are affected by seasonality. Home sales fall during the December holidays and spike in late spring and summer. 
  • In 2018, Zillow reported that the average U.S. home spends 65 and 93 days on the market; most California counties fall below this average, due in part to the high nationwide demand for California real estate.

The ongoing economic impact of the COVID-19 coronavirus may result in longer listing times as buyers are more cautious about investing in costly real estate. In light of these unprecedented circumstances, don’t be surprised if your own home sale takes longer than the averages noted above.

Factors That Can Slow the Sale of Your California Home

When we talk about “days on the market,” we mean from listing to closing. But it’s not as simple as listing your home and accepting an offer. There’s a lot that goes into the listing process, and any missteps can slow things down considerably.

  1. The general industry standard for real estate is a 30-day close; so even if you’re lucky enough to find a buyer immediately, you can anticipate an additional month for the full closing process. 
  2. When you receive an offer on your home, it’s customary to respond immediately, and in fact, most offers will come with an expiration date of 1 to 3 days. The more promptly you respond, the faster the sale process will go. 
  3. When you accept an offer, the buyer will typically have 5 to 10 days to complete a home inspection. If the buyer offers to waive the home inspection, this can speed up the closing process, but it only happens in rare cases. If the buyer presents you with an amended home offer after the inspection is complete, you have the right to counter. Just note that any negotiations can slow down the closing process. 

How to Speed Up the Home Closing Process

If you’ve been unsuccessful in finding a buyer or you’re just seeking a rapid close, you can speed up the process by contacting a company that will buy your home for cash. Real estate investment companies specialize in making cash offers on homes regardless of the condition, and this allows you to completely bypass the process of choosing a realtor, listing your home, finding a buyer, and going through the escrow process. The whole thing is streamlined. 

So if you’re thinking, “Yes, I want someone to buy my house in Los Angeles for cash,” Get Fair Home Offers is here for you. Our competitive cash offers are based on the estimated “ARV” (After Repair Value) of your home, and our no-hassle consultations are free. 

You don’t have to give up any portion of your sale to real estate commissions, and you don’t have to wait for months to complete your move. If you can’t wait to sell your home, a simple cash transaction may be the way to go. 

It’s important to know that you do have options. Discover what our real estate professionals can do for you. 

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