When do you think the best day of the year is to put your property on the market? The first day of Spring? Just after Easter? Or perhaps when the schools have returned from the summer holidays?
All are good choices and show that you’re thinking about when you’ll have a bigger audience. But do you know when you’ll have the biggest audience of all?
That’s right. Britain’s new Christmas tradition after the turkey is gone, the presents are opened and the wrapping chucked out, is to slump on the couch, pull out the phone and dive into Rightmove; the UK’s largest and most consequential property portal.
Perhaps it’s not surprising. Property is definitely an English thing – an Englishman’s home is castle and all that – but sitting through countless more repeats of The Wizard of Oz, The Great Escape and Star Wars Episode 1 to 76 just doesn’t hold the appeal it once did. And neither does being held captive to another game of Twister. Now we have a greater escape.
Historically speaking, the new year season for selling your home has always been around the second week of January: the school term is underway; people have returned form winter holidays; the regularity of working life has become the norm once more.
But things have changed. No longer do people need to even come home from holiday to being their search for property, with palm-fringed beaches in Thailand and The Maldives proving just as accessible for WiFi as anywhere at home (and often better – come on BT!) This means that people are now starting their search BETWEEN Christmas and New Year, bringing the January upturn in interest forward by about three weeks. In 2018, visits to Rightmove on Boxing Day exceeded 25million and produced 40million online viewings of property, up from 2017’s 38million. With an average day on Rightmove getting just 4.5million visits, this change of behaviour is obviously something we shouldn’t ignore.
But don’t worry: having your property available on Rightmove on Boxing Day doesn’t mean you have to accept viewings over the Christmas period. If you’d rather have some downtime with the family or by yourself, that’s absolutely fine. But it doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of the increased audience and generate interest for viewings in the new year.
Many people searching and enquiring will still be out of the country, or in the UK but in the same mindset as you, and either not able or keen to actively go out and view. Yet they do at least want to begin a conversation while they have plenty of time: it certainly beats the usual grabbing of moments at work or squeezing in searches on the train home or in an evening after work.
All of these things make this new trend entirely understandable given the pressures of daily work life, family routines and other commitments, which are all, to a lesser or greater extent, removed for a few days over Christmas. And with technology not only filling a void but making more things possible, people look to act on the things they’re already thinking about.
Given all that we’ve covered so far, our advice is no longer to wait until January to market your property if you are thinking of moving in the new year. Instead, we strongly recommend that you ensure your home is listed on Rightmove to take advantage of the Boxing Day surge. There are simply too many people visiting the website to ignore them.
We can prepare sales particulars, have photos taken, floor plans drawn up and get you listed on our website and all the main UK property portals in time for Boxing Day, and work with you over viewings to whatever schedule you like. You do not have to accept any viewings this year, either in the run up to Christmas or between Christmas and New Year; we simply want to help you take full advantage of a once-a-year opportunity to put your home in front of as many people as possible AND WITH MINIMAL COMPETITION.
Most people will not take the step of putting their property on the market before the middle of January – when a surge of property makes it very easy to get lost in the crowd. But being promoted by Rightmove as new to the market on the day of the year with most visitors and less competing properties is an opportunity not to be missed.
We’ve had so much uncertainty over the last few year and we have more coming. Regardless of the result of the general election on December 12th, we still don’t know whether or not we’re set for a hard Brexit, soft Brexit, further delays or no Brexit at all.
Uncertainty is never a good thing for the property market, but we have managed some exceptional results this year by taking advantage of every tool at our disposal. So if you are looking to move home in the fist part of 2020, we cannot recommend highly enough getting your home live on Rightmove for December 26th.
Although no conveyancing work is carried out over the Christmas period – with all the nations’ solicitors generally on holiday from the last working day before Christmas until the end of the firs week in January, both Ralph James offices will open over the festive season to handle enquiries, which have most definitely been on the rise in the last few years.
The period between Christmas and New Year has historically been a very quiet one fore estate agents – usually given over to planning for the next year and perhaps some tidying of paperwork. But now that period is showing massive potential for generating interest in properties that are new to the market, because Rightmove gives every new listing two weeks of extra promotion before moving it aside for newer stock.
If you would like us to help you seize the initiative, please get in touch with one our teams.