How Long To Add Mass For?

I have a question about growing/bulking/ whatever you want to call it-
If you want to grow and arent totally impatient when it comes to nutrition as it seems many people on this board are, how long would you add mass? I mean I see tons of people on here who don’t even weigh 200 pounds talking about cutting dieting low carbs etc.
I know or (at least I assume this is the reason) that most competitions are all close together cause most people obviously aren’t in contest shape for more than that time span…

So I guess what I want to know is how do you judge when its time to get rid of some fat? Is it a certain amount of time a year or do you start once you hit a certain percentage of bodyfat etc?

I would say that until you reach your strength and muscle goals you should not worry about cutting. If someone has achieved those and weighs less than 200 then good for them, height has a lot to do with it. I would assume that the vast majority here would never consider a contest and simply aspire to look good and be strong.

EDIT: the above is assuming the bulker is your normal/skinny/weak person who doesn’t compete

I havent been at this too long, and I am sure my attitudes will change on the subject, but for now I would bulk SLOW (I used to not do that), as in 1 pound every 2 weeks at the most. Then, if the fat gains were a bit much (which shouldnt be a huge issue at that growth rate) I would cut down when I started looking like a fat ass. No time of year or percents, just straight forward mirror evaluation (and my girlfriend telling me i got fat)