When Is The Best Time To Sell Your House?
Selling your home can be a long and tiring process, especially when your house just doesn’t seem to be getting the interest you would like it to. Nevertheless, it can be made easier by selling it at the right time.
It’s best to get your home sold and off the market with the first two months, as otherwise suspicions may be raised by prospective buyers about the condition of the property. Of course, there may not be anything wrong with it at all — the only problem was it was put on the market in December, when it’s less likely to be sold and instead sit in the listings for a few more weeks than necessary.
Typically, the best time to sell your house is in the spring – March to May are the ideal months. However, overtime certain events may occur which interfere with the general patterns that we have grown accustomed to.
At the time, 2014 was the best year for the housing market since 2007. The above data clearly demonstrates a rise in property sales throughout the year, with August and October being the most popular months for transactions. This shatters the common belief that summer is the worst time to sell; it’s likely many of the offers would have been accepted in early summer for transactions to be completed in August. At the same time, the statistics support that idea that early autumn is a great back up selling period. Nevertheless, the fact that more sales were made in summer is a rare occurrence.
Property sales fluctuated more in 2015, with a slight peak in March followed by a hastily increasing rise as the months went on. July saw the most transactions, and taking into account the average amount of time it takes for the conveyancing process to be completed, it’s safe to say that most offers were made and accepted in late spring to very early summer. This further indicates that putting your property on the market in the spring is likely to attract more buyers and in turn more offers will be made.
Additionally, October has the most transactions for the autumn months, which suggests that putting a property on the market in the early days of September is more likely to result in a sale than if you were to do so in mid to late autumn. The market continues to slow in November in December due to the festive season approaching.
(August to October figures are provisional)
We see a slight change in the pattern for 2016. March has a very sharp rise in sales, shooting up to 171,000 from 91,000 in February. This immediately falters in April and May with the cause likely to be the introduction of the higher stamp duty rates that were introduced on second homes. If this had not occurred, then it’s possible we would have seen a similar proportion of home sales throughout the whole season.
After the initial introduction of higher stamp duty, property sales started to slowly rise again with more transactions taking place in the summer months, showing that despite certain changes spring time sales continue to thrive.
Why is This?
It can be said that the main reason for spring being the best time to sell your property is it doesn’t have the setbacks that other times of year have.
The kids are back in school, Christmas has passed and is no longer on everyone’s minds, and there are less likely to be families going abroad. Because so many people are home and there aren’t as many distractions to interfere with house hunting, more buyers start looking.
For families with young children, it also allows parents time to register their child for the next school year if they are switching schools.
The weather is also a perfect backdrop when it comes to viewings and photos. The days are becoming brighter and longer, so the natural light floods into your home which is a must for those viewings and pictures. Your kerb appeal also gains extra points, as the garden will be vibrant and blooming with the sun shining.
On the other hand, winter isn’t the best time to sell because Christmas often overshadows house buying in November and December – it’s an expensive and time consuming time of year, with many people having family over and so naturally less buyers will be house hunting. However, this settles down in the new year which makes the later winter months a better time for selling.
Do I Still Have a Chance of Selling at Other Times of the Year?
While selling in spring is recommended, it’s not impossible to have a successful property sale in alternative months.
Autumn is another time of year where it’s likely your house will sell due to the fact that the kids are back in school, there are less trips abroad to contend with and there are no major holidays to distract buyers.
However, the sale still needs to be orchestrated carefully…
Putting the property on the market in early autumn is ideal so the sale can be over with quickly – don’t leave it too late because it might overlap with Christmas, which is not the best time to move and so is unfavourable with buyers.
In terms of selling in December, although still possible, it’s usually a better idea to wait it out until the new year if you can.
Often when selling your home near Christmas you’re forced to sell for a lower price because of the lack of buyers. By waiting until the new year, it is highly probable that you’ll have more potential buyers interested in your home and you’ll sell it for a better price than if you had chosen to put it on the market earlier.
Summer usually isn’t the best time to sell due to the exact same reasons spring is a good time to sell – families going abroad and extra childcare responsibilities.
Keep in mind that certain events can impact the housing market – for example, this year we saw results of the EU referendum and the aftermath of that. Keep track of what’s going on in the news and how it will affect the housing market if you can.
Is Anything Different for 2017?
There is no determining what the future will bring – it’s possible that 2017 could go in either direction. The patterns of the housing market could go back to the way they have been in previous years with spring being the overall peak; on the other hand, the looming Brexit woes could have an impact with the government intending to trigger Article 50 by April.
Regardless, Simon Rubinsohn of RICS predicts an increase in transaction volumes early in 2017, so early spring is a good time to get your property on the market just like in previous years to avoid any uncertainty. Putting your property up for sale in March, April or May is the most beneficial for you. However, if you’re not quite ready to put it on the market yet you can wait until September for the next best chance of a successful sale.