I received an e-mail from a landlord in Lexden the other day. She had apparently been following my blog for a while and wanted to pick my brain concerning the best time of the year to sell a property. If like me you haven’t had to sell a property in recent years you may not have given a lot of thought to this issue. However as and when you do need to sell you may find the following information helpful.
For some home owners timing can be very straight forward whilst for others it’s a minefield. However there are definitely certain times of the year that can prove more productive than others and a number of factors will need to be taken into account.
Once your property goes on the market, one of the first questions you will be asking yourself , (apart from the selling price), will be how long will it take to find a buyer ? Even the best agents don’t have a crystal ball to help with that one, However we can draw on the following:
According to the latest set of figures for all 42 estate agents in Colchester, the average length of time it takes to find a buyer for properties in Colchester is as follows ..
Detached 90 days
Semi 58 days
Terraced 76 days
Flats 97 days
Overall average 83 days
If we look back to January 2016, the overall average time it took to find a buyer (again using data for all of the 42 estate agents in Colchester) it took 111 days.So you might conclude that sales are completing more quickly than six months ago. Not true because when we checked the data going back to 2008, we found that the average length of time it takes to sell a property usually reduces between January and the Summer months, following which it increases again on the run up to Christmas.
For example … Winter 2008 – 151 days. Summer 2008 – 118 days
and in more recent times …
Winter 2013 – 152 days Summer 2013 – 149 days
Winter 2014 – 126 days Summer 2014 – 109 days
Winter 2015 – 112 days Summer 2015 – 107 days
So if a property is placed on the market today and we know that on average it takes around twelve weeks to find a buyer. Then dd to that the time for surveyors to complete their reports and for solicitors to complete the conveyancing of lets say six to eight weeks after that, then we could be looking at 5 months to complete the sale. Of course there are exceptions and many sales will complete more quickly.
The ideal timing of a move comes down to personal choice. If there are children in the family this will often influence one’s decision. On the one hand you may delay putting that for sale board in your front garden so you can move in the summer school holidays, but on the other hand, you may want to move sooner in order to be in the catchment area of a preferred school, in plenty of time for the next academic year.
There are certainly times of the year when it’s better to sell, and times when waiting a little longer can pay off in the long run. In a nutshell, I would say this is the way of the seasons ..
BEST TIME OF YEAR TO GO TO MARKET ?
Spring: Customarily the busiest time for house-buyers is when the daffodils start to show themselves
Summer: Sellers may miss out as many potential house-buyers are on holiday
Autumn: The enthusiasm for buying homes returns
Winter: Interest diminishes as festive period looms
This can create opportunities for landlord investors as there are bargains to be found during the later months of the year, when there is less competition amongst buyers. So, whilst there are better months to achieve a quicker sale, the main piece of advice I can give to every home owner and landlord in Colchester, is to do the right thing for yourself, do your homework and buy (and sell) with both your head as well as your heart.
If you’d like a second opinion on an investment property you are considering or just to have an informal chat about any aspect of the Colchester property market please feel free to call me on 01206 862288 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
I’m happy to provide free feedback free of any obligation. If you send me the hyperlink to the property from Rightmove or Zoopla I will usually respond within 24 hours. I am also happy to undertake free pre-purchase visits to your short list of potential properties to provide a rental valuation.