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New Year, New Home

Tuesday, 8th December 2015

Categories: Market Analysis Property Prices Sales

Author: Justin Burns

Most people use the Christmas break to catch up with family and friends, overdose on seasonal television and overdo the food and drink. However, eager house hunters put their festive free time to more productive use by keeping a keen eye on online house activity. There is a huge spike in online house searches between Christmas and New Year – a time when people traditionally have time off together, with nothing more planned than working through box sets and Christmas dinner leftovers.

If you’re a canny vendor, you would have been fully prepared before the festive break, with your house details uploaded and ready for the captive Christmas audience so that, come January, your diary will be full of viewings.

We all know that spring is a prime selling time but the annual property buzz actually starts even before the New Year commences. So, if you were planning to hold off until the weather turns before putting your house on the market, it might be worth changing tack and pushing for an earlier sale. That way you will capitalise on the post-Christmas surge of purchasers, all entering the New Year with a firm resolution to buy a new home.

The internet has helped enable this flurry of activity in the marketplace, as people with time on their hands can now hone their search criteria and spend time considering properties and preparing a shortlist of houses they are genuinely interested in. Years ago, the market would have essentially shut up shop, as the festive tumbleweeds kicked in just before Christmas, and estate agents and buyers brushed off the cobwebs after New Year. Nowadays, this period is put to good use and the subsequent viewings will be all the more positive, as purchasers have had longer to consider the properties and do their research.

If you missed the boat in terms of getting your property listed before Christmas, don’t worry – you can still take advantage of the buoyant first few months of the year. Use the opportunity of the Christmas break to get everything in order and make sure your house or flat is ready to be photographed as soon as offices are open again.

Gather all the information together that you will need to register your property and tackle those DIY jobs that have been festering for months: creaky floorboards, loose kitchen cupboard doors, dripping taps – these are all details that potential buyers will notice but that can be easily rectified to improve your property’s appeal.