I spend a lot of time here researching the Arizona real estate market and the real estate market in Las Vegas and California so I can see trends coming towards Arizona.

The reality is most people don’t have the luxury of choosing when they buy or sell a home.

A new job, divorce, death or birth can all necessitate a move.

It doesn’t matter where the market is in the cycle – top, bottom or in between – you have to move. (Although, some areas will always be appreciating better than others wherever you move.)

Now that conditions are generally better for home buyers, many are waiting on the sidelines for a clear sign that the market has bottomed out.

Most people feel more comfortable buying when there is a lot of home-buying activity. However, savvy real estate investors take a different approach. They buy when the market is soft and sell when the market is hot.

However, home buying and selling decisions are rarely based simply on whether it’s the best time to buy or sell. This is because the “investor” is buying a property that will also function as a home.

Few home sellers who are happy in their current home sell just because the market is strong. On the other hand, no matter how content you are in your home, if your job moves elsewhere, you could find yourself having to sell in a soft market.

Nevertheless, if you can choose when to buy or sell, its great to know where you are in the local real estate market cycle and avoid the herd.