Winter buyers mean business
Convention has it that the best time to buy or sell property is in the spring. The rationale behind this is that, particularly in London, most City workers got their bonuses in March and there was a resultant rush to the property market!
However, things have changed and the residential property market now is no longer as cyclical as it was and waiting until spring does not seem to make so much sense.
As we have just come through a particularly wintery spell, it is actually this season that is fast becoming the best time of year for the property market. Buyers are more committed, there is less competition and homes, marketed properly, can often be seen in their best light. Buyers are likely to spend longer looking at your property if it is warm and cosy and if a buyer likes a house when the snow is falling outside, that same buyer is likely to love it all the more come summer.
It has recently been reported that property websites saw record traffic over the Christmas/New Year holiday period and that means, therefore, that for a seller, this is a really strong time to list a property for sale.
Surely this is common sense. Over a holiday period such as this, people have time to talk and make decisions and to actually look at properties albeit these days mainly on line, certainly on line in the first instance.
Therefore, given these factors, winter buyers are often more committed in terms of their seriousness and willingness to proceed quickly. A winter buyer can be in before Easter, a spring buyer will be completing in the summer and then there is the inevitable juggling with summer holidays which can be so tedious in a chain situation.
So, therefore, if you are considering selling your property and you go into the New Year with that in mind then deal with it straightaway and don’t wait. This makes strong sense not least because, in some areas, property prices are actually falling and so there is a need to strike quickly. Advice to sellers – make your property look warm and inviting and please make sure that you have instructed your solicitor to prepare the “sale pack” so that the solicitor can send out the papers immediately a buyer is found.