Ah, the age-old question. If we had a penny for every time a customer asked us this question about their own home, we’d have a lot of pennies.
We always ask our customers what they mean by “best”. One person’s “best” is the highest price they can get for their home, but for another it can mean the quickest possible sale.
Broadly speaking, the best time to sell is when there are the most amount of buyers actively looking because they compete over a property and submit subsequently higher offers. Whilst this doesn’t guarantee a quick sale, you’re likely to have more than one interested party willing to pay the same or similar for your home, allowing you to choose the one who’s in the best position to proceed.
Here’s how the four seasons compare:
Spring always ranks as the best season in which to sell a property. People aren’t away on summer holidays and Christmas/New Year seems a distant memory. The longer, lighter, warmer days sees a wave of enthusiast buyers come out to play, and with gardens blossoming, properties look better than they do at any other point in the year.
Summer is a difficult time to sell a family home because most interested parties tend to be away on holiday with their children or heavily distracted in keeping them occupied and arranging childcare. Parents simply don’t have the time, energy or headspace to mount the concerted effort required for viewing and agreeing terms on a new family home. That said, smaller homes and flats still sell fairly well because they tend to appeal to the first-time buyer market who haven’t yet started a family; though they may still be away themselves, of course! If you absolutely must sell in the summer, it’s best advised to get your home on the market as early as possible. If it’s not on by early July, you’re at a distinct disadvantage.
Whilst it’s not as good as spring, autumn has always been a good time to sell because there are no major holidays to contend with and homes still tend to look good, especially if the weather’s mild. It’s advisable to get your property listed before late September if you’re to have any chance of completing the sale before Christmas, so be ready to act quickly if you find a suitable buyer. Buyers tend to go into hibernation after the first week in November because they don’t want the hassle of agreeing a sale or moving over Christmas, so if you leave coming to the market too late, you’ll be waiting until the following year to move.
We all enjoy the winter festivities that tend to start in late November and last throughout December into January. Buyers are no different, so looking for a new home goes on the backburner for nearly everyone during this period. Unless it’s absolutely essential, postpone putting your property on the market until mid-January, when there will be a new wave of active buyers in the market.