How to know whether now’s the right time to sell
There’s usually a trigger that causes someone to want to sell their home and move, which means you might not have the luxury of choosing the best time of year. For example, you might have a new child and need more space.
But for our customers who don’t need to move straight away, one of the questions we’re often asked is: “when’s the best time of year to sell my house?”
The best time really does depend on what you’re trying to achieve with your move. It could be the certainty of an easy move while the market is fluid or achieving the very best possible price to secure the next dream move.
Ultimately, the best month or season to sell varies from area to area and year to year. The best way to know is to start the conversation with a valuation from your local haart branch, but we’ve put together some guidelines below based on our experience in the industry.
Selling in Spring
Spring is traditionally thought of as the season when the housing market awakens after a quiet period in the winter. It’s a hot contender for ‘best time to sell’ and is also a very popular and active time in the market.
Supply of new properties increases dramatically in Spring - on average we have brought more property to the market in the last three years during Spring than in any other season, and 25% more than in the winter.
Market demand also goes up at this time of year - we see 12.7% more buyer registrations in Spring than in any other time of the year. Despite supply increasing faster than demand, pricing still holds strong as well.
Spring is second only to Autumn in terms of transactions in the UK between 2007 and 2017 according to the land registry house price index.
Selling in the Summer
One of the best reasons why summer is a great time to sell is it gives the best chance of a dry moving day!
There’s a hustle and bustle about Summer in the market – the Spring listings are being sold and interest remains high. Summer prices are typically the peak of the year before a dip in Autumn and Winter.
The big thing that lets summer down, though, is the holiday lulls, which means transactions are, on average, lower than in Spring and Autumn.
But it’s a good time of year for new build sales, which hit their peak in summer with the dryer months allowing building projects move forward quickly. On average 22.5% more new builds are sold in Summer than in Winter months.
Selling in the Autumn
The feeding frenzy of Summer is over and as we enter Autumn and the nights start drawing in, the volume of new listings starts to slow down too.
We get 9% less listings in Autumn than we do in Summer, so based on those stats you might not think Autumn is the best time to sell. However, Autumn is the time of year when most Britons move – this is because some of the properties which were listed in the summer are now being sold.
Selling in the Winter
Winter is usually thought of as one of the worst times to sell. This is because transactions are at the lowest and there’s a lull in property coming to the market too.
But it’s not all bad – there are lots of new buyers interested in moving at this time, which means there’s demand but very little competition. In terms of new buyer registrations, Winter is only 5% less active than the Summer months when the market is moving fast.
Selling your home in the New Year
After Christmas there’s an explosion of activity in the market. Rightmove traffic in December 2017 was an average of 22.6m per day. Fast forward to January 2018, just one month later and it’s 38.2m per day. That’s a boost of almost 70%, making the new year the time when demand picks up most rapidly.
A lot of agents talk about the Boxing Day spike as the best time to launch to the market. In 2017 Rightmove traffic went from 11.7 million on Christmas Day to 21.9m on Boxing Day (need some room for all the prezzies).
But the most important thing to remember is 50% of views online in the first month of a listing come in the first week. That’s why Boxing Day gets beaten hands down by the 2nd January as the best time to launch a property.
The New Year is a real contender for the best time to sell as the lack of supply and higher demand means that astute newcomers to the market can steal a march and get moved early.