Many buyers aren’t likely to wait for rates to drop before jumping back into the market. This means it’s important to get your clients in to see a property as early as they can. iStock photo

The beginning of each new year is always a great time to predict new trends, and in real estate this seems to be a fun topic every year. However, rather than project hypothetical new concepts or changes that may occur, it makes the most sense to look back at the past year or two and consider what has been gaining steam.

For buyers and sellers, it is important to realize that Saturday is the new Sunday. When I started working in real estate almost 20 years ago, open houses were listed in the Sunday real estate section of the newspaper, and that was the day for all public open houses. Even prior to COVID, if a listing was expected to have a lot of interest, listing agents began holding open houses on both Saturday and Sunday.

As the market heated up more and more, “offer deadlines” became a trend, usually calling for offers to be reviewed on Monday or Tuesday. It became in the buyers’ best interest to attend the open house on Saturday so that they could have a chance to see how they like the home, and if so, they could come back on Sunday for a second viewing before considering an offer on Monday. In the second half of 2023 fewer listings had offer deadlines, and this continues to be an early trend in 2024.

As we head into the spring market most buyer’s agents are recommending to their clients that they get in to see a property as early as they are able to. If they can see it before the weekend, that is ideal, however many sellers want to get through at least one open house, and a large portion of buyers are unable to get away from work or other obligations so cannot see the home until the weekend.

Again, Saturday seems to the be the new Sunday in real estate, so I strongly recommend that as a buyer, if you are interested in a home, try to get there on Saturday and do not wait for Sunday, as it may be gone.


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The truth is that a lot of people have more flexibility in their work hours nowadays, combined with the modern sense of urgency people tend to feel, so we are seeing a lot of potential buyers rushing to get into a house even before the weekend if they can.

The other trend that emerged this past year centered around the issue of buyer representation.

Buyer agency has been around for more than 30 years, however the importance of buyers having representation became eminently clear this past fall with the jury verdict in the Sitzer/Burnett antitrust class action lawsuit against the National Association of Realtors and several large brokerage firms.

Jared Wilk

As a result of this case and others, an increased emphasis on the use of buyer representation agreements and conversations between agents and their clients – both buyers and sellers – about the services and value they provide to justify their commission took hold over the second half of 2023 and will continue in the new year.

It’s essential that buyers and their agent discuss the role the real estate professional will play as well as how they will be compensated, and expect more buyer agents to request a buyer representation agreement early on in the relationship with a new buyer. On the other side, some sellers after learning of this case and asking their Realtor if they can list their house without offering compensation to a buyer broker, so listing agents must be prepared to explain the pros and cons of this strategy.

As for more data-driven trends, we certainly expect to see continued low inventory. The market slowed down in the fall due to the lack of options as well as higher mortgage rates. One thing that will change is that we do not anticipate buyers waiting for rates to drop, so between the pent-up buyer demand, lack of inventory, and more manageable rates, expect prices to remain on the high side, with another strong and competitive spring real estate market.

Jared Wilk is the 2024 president of the Greater Boston Association of Realtors and principal of the Shulkin Wilk Group at Compass.

With Competition Strong, Saturday Is the New Sunday for Homebuyers

by Banker & Tradesman time to read: 3 min