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The Summer Market

Monday, 6th July 2009

Categories: Market Analysis Sales Selling Tips

Author: Peter Barry

It appears that summer has arrived early this year and if the long range forecast is to be believed it should be one of the hottest for many years.

It’s not been easy to track the seasonable changes in the housing market during the all encompassing recession but now that we appear to be returning to a more ‘normal’ market such factors will start to have an impact again.

Those who work in the property market will be familiar with the cycles - spring is the busiest period of the year, followed by autumn, whereas the weeks either side of Christmas are the slowest followed by the summer months.  The reason for dearth of summer sellers is the concern over whether they can be sure of achieving the best price for their property when so many of the potential buyers are away on holiday? How solid is the logic behind this thinking?

While it is true that most people take a holiday over the summer months the percentage of the population that is away at any one time is not actually that high. Take the worst affected part of the market as an example; family houses. Most families take a break during the six week school holiday period, so assuming that the average holiday duration is 2 weeks, it is likely that at any one time between a quarter and a third of the potential buyers will be away.

This still leaves the majority of buyers available to view. When you set this fact against the average time that it takes to sell a property (between 4 and 8 weeks) it’s clear that unless you intend to accept an offer within the first couple of weeks all the potential buyers will have had a chance to view.

There are some properties that may even benefit from being marketed over the summer holidays. If you live on a busy road a 20% drop in traffic can make the difference between free flowing traffic and a buyer scaring snarl up. Similarly, if you live on a road that gets parked up with commuters your potential buyers will have a better chance of finding a parking spot while many of those commuters are on holiday.

So if you are planning on selling your property don’t feel that you have to wait until the autumn when you are likely to face much more competition. We won’t be putting things on hold over the summer and there’s no need for you to either.