Friday, 1 July 2016

When is the best month to sell your Crawley home

I had a homeowner from Pound Hill email me the other day. She said she had been following my blog (the Crawley Property Market Blog) for a while and wanted to pick my brain on when is the best time of the year to sell a property. Trying to calculate the best time to put your Crawley property on the market can often seem something akin to witchcraft and, whilst I would agree that there are particular times of the year that can prove more productive than others, there are plenty of factors that need to be taken into consideration.

Even if you are putting your property on the market, you don’t know how long it will take to find a buyer - no crystal ball to help with that one. At the moment, the latest set of figures for all 25 estate agents in Crawley, show the average length of time it takes to find a buyer for any Crawley property is as follows ..

Detached                    106 days
Semi                              68 days
Terraced                       64 days
Flat                                77 days
Overall average            82 days

If we roll the clock back to January 2016, the overall average time it took to find a buyer (again using data from all of the 25 Crawley Estate Agents) was 110 days.

So, on the face of it, things have vastly improved over the last six months or so. Well, when I looked at the data going back to 2008, the average length of time it takes to sell a property usually drops between January and the Summer months, for it to rise on the run up to Christmas. For example ..

Winter 2008 - 128 days          Summer 2008  - 98 days

and in more recent times …

Winter 2013 - 129 days          Summer 2013  - 118 days
Winter 2014 - 101 days          Summer 2014  -   84 days
Winter 2015 -   94 days          Summer 2015  -   80 days

Coming back to the present, even if you placed your property on the market today in Crawley, if it takes you on average a little under twelve weeks to find a buyer, then you can expect solicitors and the chain to take an additional eight and twelve weeks after that, before you move. It comes down to personal choice as to when you place your property on the market. Children often affect the decision. On one side you might delay putting that for sale board in your front garden so you can move in the summer school holidays, but on the other side, you might want to move sooner to be in the catchment area of a preferred school, in plenty of time for the next academic year?

There are times of the year when it's better to sell, and times when waiting a little longer can pay off in the long run. In a nutshell, I would say this is the way of the seasons ..
Spring: Customarily there are more house-buyers as the Daffodils show themselves
Summer: Sellers may miss out on house-buyers being on holiday
Autumn: The enthusiasm for buying homes returns
Winter: Interest diminishes as festive period looms 

What this means to buyers and landlord investors is that they often pick up a bargain in later months of the year, as there is less competition from owner occupiers. So, whilst there are better months to achieve a quicker sale, the only piece of advice I can give to every home  owner and landlord in Crawley, is do the right thing for yourself, do your homework and buy (and sell) with both your head as well as your heart

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