October until spring is typically a slow time in the property market – everyone is ready for the winter months, getting cosy and warm and decorating their homes for the festivities. However, we are in unusual market conditions, and we believe it could still be a great time to list your home for sale.
With prices predicted to fall – albeit slowly – next year, you might be able to capitalise on the house price growth we’ve seen over the last 18 months, especially if you’re selling a rental property or second home. With mortgage rates going up, many people have mortgage offers they received last summer, which are still valid until early next year and if they’re first-time buyers, they could move quickly enough to secure a great rate rather than reapply for a higher rate mortgage.
The Boxing Day boom is another reason to sell now. Every year on Rightmove, more people search the site for property, even starting on Christmas Day. As people have spent time with family and at home, possibly with homes that need upgrading, they focus on the new year and what lies ahead. Part of this is moving to a larger or more energy-efficient home. Last year there were more than 51 million visits to Rightmove from Boxing Day to January and with fewer people selling, your home will be seen by many more potential buyers.
Over the festive season, many people will travel about the country. Friends and family are in unfamiliar areas, and it gives them an opportunity to see what property is available, especially as homes in Scotland are cheaper and offer more space for your money than in many parts of England.
Despite it being a busy time for families, houses do sell in December. You don’t see the same volumes, but it’s still business as usual, apart from a couple of days. Anyone looking for a home in December will likely be a more committed buyer.
If you’re worried about visitors on Christmas Eve or when you want to relax, you can make sure that you control which days you’re available for viewings. Today technology allows for video tours, Matterport tours and fantastic imagery to give people a good idea of whether they are serious viewers.
Given that it’s so cold in December, you can use this to your advantage. Make your home warm and cosy, and arrange any viewings in daylight to maximise its appeal. If you’re selling over Christmas, make sure you put lovely lights outside and try not to choose a tree that’s too big for the room.
Talk to us for a free market appraisal.