There are patterns of activity in the property market, times when more property will likely come up for sale, when buyers will raise their heads over the parapet bright eyed to start looking again and there are times when the property market almost falls asleep.
These are patterns that are good for you to know. Having them in mind you can sit down with your agent and discuss the impact upon your marketing strategy, when will be the best time to achieve the desired result? Ultimately property sells all year long and the right time for you to sell may not be the same as for someone else.
So when does it all start?
January 2nd! Well that may be a little rash but not far off the mark. Christmas is a time of reflection, a time when people make resolutions, change jobs, partners and just come to a point where they say, ‘we keep talking about it, lets finally do it!’
New Year means a new start for so many of us. The property market tends to see a rush of activity through January to March. Of course the weather plays its’ part and good days bring activity, dark wet blustery days tend to keep people indoors.
Easter is the time most people think the market gets going and it is a watershed but the Easter break itself tends to be a damp squib.
The property market is influenced by school terms. The kids go back to school after Easter, the first Saturday is caught up with getting the things you’d forgotten or didn’t realise. ‘Why didn’t you tell me there was a hole in your football boots?’ ‘What really happened to your shoes?’ ‘What books?’
After that first weekend life falls back to a semblance of normality and routine and suddenly house hunting comes to the fore. With the summer school holidays looming ahead the thought is often, let’s kill two birds with one stone. We’ve taken time off to be with the kids, wouldn’t it be great if we could move then too!
Spring is the busy period until we get properly into exam times and school finishing. Summer, late June through to Early September is a quieter period for most in the property sales industry.
Once September arrives we have that same process, kids back to school, rush around first weekend setting things right and then it’s ‘Let’s do it now and we can move for Christmas!’
Late November into December and things quieter down, people are focussed on the holidays again and moving, for those who are looking around goes out of the window. It’s a different story altogether for those in the midst of a transaction!
Do these patterns hold true everywhere all the time?
Through thirty years we’ve seen the pattern stay pretty much the same. There are regional variations and many seaside areas will be quieter out of season. A lot of areas that appear busy during the summer months can see high enquiry levels from holiday makers but little real effective activity.
What about all those people who don’t have children, don’t they influence the pattern? Of course they do to a degree but we live in a society where grandparents are often the favourite babysitters and find themselves called upon even more during holiday time. Looking at houses then becomes so much harder. Family homes list once the kids have gone back to school or left home and then those who want to buy them suddenly look to sell their own homes or step into the market for the very first time.
The answer always is, talk to your agent about the patterns they see and how they will affect what you choose to do.
Just because a busy period approaches doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the best time to market your home, nor does a quieter period looming spell doom and gloom.
The type of home you have will influence the outcome as much as the location and time of year, the key will be how you choose to market your home.