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Sell your house this Christmas!

Thinking of waiting until spring to sell? You may want to think again this Christmas.

Ask any expert when the best time to sell your property is and the answer will almost certainly be spring. The season is a firm favourite amongst house hunters as the weather improves and the prospect of ‘new beginnings’ inspires thoughts of a move. However, if you’re considering waiting until spring before listing your property you could be missing a trick! Indeed, you might want to take a closer look at the festive season.

Rightmove says straight after Christmas day people start thinking about property. It saw a 228% increase in pages viewed on Rightmove between Christmas Day and the 2nd January 2018. On Christmas Day itself in 2017, there were 11 million page visits while the 2nd of January saw 38 million pages viewed.

Of course, it’s not really surprising that the end of December is a prime time for house hunters to start their search. Most of us are off work so have the time to browse these sites for our next property. And there’s no better time for a new start than the New Year.

“Homeowners often decide to sell or let their properties over Christmas but do nothing about it until January – big mistake,” says Jeremy Leaf, a former RICS Residential Chairman & independent North London estate agent. “Many people make moving one of their new year’s resolutions, especially if intending to change jobs early in 2019 so often consider buying or renting in December.

“The Christmas holiday is also a time for visiting relatives and friends in unfamiliar places which gives an opportunity for prospective purchasers to check possible moves away from their present area. You may not want prospective purchasers viewing your property while finishing turkey leftovers but some agents (including my firm!) will be open every day except the public holidays if you’re up for it. 

“December this year has been busier for us than expected as buyers take advantage of more competitive rents and prices as well as very low mortgage rates – despite Brexit!”

So how can you capitalise on the increase in interested buyers?

Don’t use photos with decorations

While there may be plenty of interest from potential buyers over the festive season, that doesn’t mean you’ll sell within days. As such your house may still be on the market come January and at that point the last thing buyers want to see is Christmas decorations! If you’re planning on marketing your house over Christmas make sure you take photos before you put the decorations up.

Make sure you’re getting maximum exposure

The vast majority of buyers will start their property search online and a buyers property portal of choice will differ so your best bet is to make sure your agent is listing your property on all of them. Check out our guide on property portals to find out more.

Get an agent that will deliver

A good agent can be the difference between a quick sale and a property languishing on the market for months. You can compare agents by cost and performance – which of your local agents sell quickest and closest to asking price – with our free to use tool EstateAgent4Me.

If you’re going online, check what you’re paying for

Online agents are much cheaper than traditional high street agents although it’s important you know what you’re getting for your money. Some agents will offer more comprehensive packages than others. Our online estate agents comparison table allows you to compare agents by price and tells you what is and isn’t included in their packages.

There has been some turmoil in the online estate agent sector, which most recently has left homeowners that paid up front with Emoov unlikely to get their money back. So tread carefully and consider paying on a credit card for added protection.

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