‘Tis the season to be…investing

Christmas is coming

At this time of year, most of us are into full Christmas preparation mode. Any plans of buying or selling a property are probably firmly on the backburner. But what if we told you this is potentially the perfect time to prepare for a sale or to bag yourself a bargain?

The Christmas period used to be a traditional downtime in the property world. There was little movement with properties taken off the market if there was no interest. However, the advent of the digital age put paid to that, as it is now possible to search for a property whenever, and wherever, you felt like it.

And, if you think about it, there’s no better time to contemplate a purchase. Christmas is always a time for reflection and whilst everyone is at home, with time off, there’s plenty of opportunity to talk about the future and start making plans.

The Boxing Day boom

Between Boxing Day and the first workday of 2021, the Rightmove site had an astonishing 51 million visits. The amount of traffic to Rightmove, on Boxing Day 2021 was over 50% higher than the previous year, and on the same day property site Zoopla experienced an increase of 70% from the previous year.

During October 2021, Rightmove reported a 14% increase in requests for valuations compared to the same period last year, suggesting that sellers were already getting ready to capitalise on this year’s Boxing Day boom.

Why wait?

Small toy house on table next to keys
Could you take advantage of the pre-Christmas lull?

But who wants to be one of thousands of others scrambling for a property when you’re full of Christmas dinner and ready for some downtime? For me, the pre- Boxing Day period is where the real bargains can be found, before that surge of interest kicks in.

Prices are often dropped before Christmas to try and encourage buyers, perhaps the property has been on the market for a while, or the sellers are after a quick sale. There will certainly be less competition if you fancy putting an offer in and, for buyers, it’s pretty much guaranteed that any viewings will be from serious buyers rather than speculative interest, as everyone is busy with other things.

One of my best property purchases was made at an auction just before Christmas. I had already purchased a number of apartments in a lovely block, but shortly before Christmas a lovely one appeared on the sunny side of the building, which I knew would be really popular with prospective tenants.

However, the prime location meant it was over our budget, I’d been outbid on several similar properties already, plus it was a busy time of year, so I took the decision not to go to the auction. But, after a sleepless night I woke up and changed my mind. I jumped on the train the next morning. And I’m really glad I did. The proximity to Christmas meant I secured the flat, got it well within budget and it really is the jewel of that portfolio.

Getting prepared

Maybe you’re not quite ready for the leap pre-Christmas, but if you’re looking to sell or buy there are still plenty of things you can do so you’re ready to capitalise on that rush of interest when Boxing Day finally arrives.

If you’re selling, getting in touch with an agent now means you can get all the preparation done before the day. Many estate agents are happy to get your house ready for listing, including taking photos of the interior before the decorations go up, so that once Boxing Day arrives, they just need to make it live on their site.

Other sellers don’t want the hassle of interest or viewings in between Christmas and New Year. Agents get round this by making the property live online but marking it in their records as a Do Not Disturb period, having pre-arranged with the seller a post-Christmas and New Year date when they’re happy to begin discussions and accommodate viewings.

If you’re buying, contact the agents and let them know. Registering your interest takes time, and it’s better to get this done during a quieter period, when you can ask the questions that matter. For us, spending time with our clients, getting to know them and really understand what they’re looking for is a really crucial part of the process, so it’s worth having the initial conversation sooner rather than later.  

Share the load

Whenever you’re considering a property investment, the thought of it can sometimes feel overwhelming, which is where we come in. At CPP, we want to help you understand the way the process works and make finding the perfect property that little bit easier. If you’re short on time, we can pick up the strain and manage the process. If you’d like to manage it yourself but need some guidance, we can offer support along the way.

So, if all you want for Christmas is to start 2022 as a property investor, then why not get in touch?

Enquire about a property

We use cookie to improve your experience on our site. By using our site you consent Cookies. Learn more Allow Cookies