Is Christmas a good time to sell?

Tis the season to close shop on your failed sale and prepare for feasting and loved ones instead. But is it really a good idea to rest marketing your property over Christmas?

We say no, it can be a very good time of year to sell and Land Registry figures back this up.

It's easy to understand Land Registry data, you just need to remember a golden rule.
Figures for sales volumes are taken on the completion of a sale, when banks transfer monies involved in each corresponding sale in your chain. This happens, on average, 8-12 weeks after you accept an offer.

We need to look at data of sales volumes around 2-3 months after December in order to get an idea of how many homes go under-offer over the Christmas period.

For measure, sale volumes peak in the summer and autumn to reflect the busy spring and summer markets. Here are sales figures for 2010 and 2011 within Greater London:

Sales completed data from the Land Registry:
June 2010 8758
June 2011 7798

July 2010 9468
July 2011 8685

8-12 weeks after Christmas, the figures are:
Feb 2010 6314
Feb 2011 5774

Mar 2010 7293
Mar 2011 6667

Iíll just do the maths to average-out total sales over the summer months. Remember, they are indicative of homes that go under offer that spring.
There were an average of 8677 sales over the 2-year period.
Over both Christmases, there were about 6512 sales.
Statistically you are only 24% less likely to get an offer in December than you are in April.

Many people take their homes off the market over Christmas because they feel that the market is too quiet, but in fact you have a far greater chance of being noticed over this particular holiday season as the competition drops significantly. You may not want the hassle of selling at this time of year, but it can pay off dividends. While the amount of homes advertised for sale drop, viewings increase significantly as more people have the time to view over the holiday season.

Vitally, itís old hat to think you can mysteriously whip your home off the market now and prepare to return in the spring. Too many websites offer the ability to track the marketing history of every property advertised online. In a couple of clicks, users can see exactly when you entered and withdrew from the market, with which agent and at what price. Every price change is listed for all too see, making each change utterly transparent to todayís web users. Be sure to market honestly and strategically to achieve the best results.