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Property: When is the best time to sell your home?

June 14, 2019 Residential Conveyancing

is a difficult decision that requires careful consideration. When done right, it can be a great opportunity for moving on into a better property or gaining more financial flexibility. However, there are a wide range of factors to take into account. One that often comes to mind quite early on once committed to selling a home is when the best time for selling it would be. This blog will illustrate the complexity of this question and show how many different considerations can play into the decision. The most important point though is that the time is right for you as a family or individual.

Generally, the answer to this is yes. It is often said that in Scotland the best times to sell are spring or autumn. However, what exactly the impact of seasonal differences in the property market means for selling a home is disputed. Going through the seasons you will see why:

As said above, the spring months are the most favoured time to sell in Scotland. Reasons for that are that many people will want to make their move before the summer where they want to enjoy the comfort of their new home or will be away. A number of bank holidays also gives more opportunities to arrange viewings. Additionally, the ‘kerb appeal’ of houses, meaning the first impression they give to buyers, can be higher in nice weather with lots of light and blooming gardens.

However, the downside of this is, that generally there will be more homes on the market. This means potential buyers will have more of a choice which can have an effect on the price you can achieve.

Summer tends to be the least attractive time for buyers. Many will go on holiday or want to enjoy time off rather than take on the stress of moving. For families with children it is also important to allow enough time to adjust to a new home before school starts again, which is why they will be looking to buy in spring rather then summer.

As stated above, autumn is another peak time to . After enjoying the summer, people who are looking to buy a home will want to do that before winter starts and spend Christmas there. The weather can still be reasonably nice and with the children back in school there is more time to consider options. For younger people, autumn is also a time when after leaving the education system during summer, they will start new jobs in new place.

Winter is the most disputed time for selling a home. While some say this is the worse time to sell your home, others find reasons while it could be a great time to score a good price. On one hand, people are generally more focused on Christmas, many are tired out from a busy year and will not have the energy to go ahead with the search for a new home. On the other hand, this also means that less people will be selling at that time, making it easier for your home to achieve a god price and stand out. This also allows for more flexibility than in busier times which can be an advantage. If however your home stays on the market for too long, this might keep potential buyers off. It might therefore be better to wait for the new year.

The start of the year is a time of change for many people – plans and decisions are made which can include the purchase of a new home. The new year can therefore be a good opportunity for selling. Something to keep in mind though is the fact that the preparations of the sale will have to be finished before that and that could be a big commitment during Christmas time. As the market becomes more active again in spring as well, it might therefore be better to wait until then.

This brief summary shows that there are some general seasonal differences that should be considered when deciding on a time to put a home up for sale. Other important factors that influence the property market are entirely independent from seasons: the type of property your home is, the location and situation in your local area. Additionally, political and economic developments such as Brexit can have implications on the property market and affect the confidence of buyers to invest in a new home. It is therefore very advisable to contact a professional like an estate agent or solicitor who knows your local market and can make more tailored suggestions.

What it comes down to is this: while taking into account the above-mentioned trends, you need to be ready to sell you home before you even consider when the best time is. You should be sure about what a sale means to you and your family financially and emotionally.

Make sure to value your home correctly and consider your mortgage so you do not lose out when selling. While it is best to get professional advice to do so, a first step is to look at your current mortgage statement. The difference between this figure and the estimated value your home will give you an indication of where you stand. If you have any other outstanding debts, they should be considered as well. An experienced solicitor or estate agent will be able to tell you exactly where you stand and help make the right choice about selling your home and whether this will be enough to afford to buy a new one.

Lastly, such a big decision should not be made at once. Your home is an integral part of your life and plays an important role for your wellbeing. Therefore only sell your house when you feel ready for it and then seek advice on how to do it in the best way possible.

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