Festive Investment 1st Dec 2015
House buying wisdom tells us that spring and summer are the prime seasons for house hunting, as more people put their properties on the market. However there are some very logical reasons for going shopping for a house in the winter months too:
Simple economics tells us that low demand can drive house prices down, and a bargain could well be had. Lower winter activity results in sellers being highly motivated to sell, and therefore more willing to negotiate on house prices, as well as what is included in the sale, move in dates etc.
Less offers so your bids look better
When other potential buyers are taking a break from property hunting to shop and party, a keen seller will be really happy to see you and a lack of other bids will make your ‘competitive’ bid seem more appealing. Fewer buyers means less competition when the property goes to a closing date. And an offer may well be accepted without even going to a closing date.
This year it is a particularly good idea to carry on looking for properties while other potential buyers are distracted as, at the moment, property demand is outstripping supply so by hunting for properties when it is quieter, you stand a better chance of snapping up good property at a competitive price.
You might get a better mortgage
Another reason to property hunt in December is that with many people distracted by Christmas you are also likely to find mortgage lenders aren’t quite as busy as normal either. This means your application may be dealt with quicker and you could even get a better deal.
Lenders have certainly been competing harder in the buy to let market recently and many fixed rates and fees have been cut as a result.
Towards the end of the year many lenders are either eager to get business on the books so they can hit their bonus targets, or to start building a pipeline of business to go towards next year’s bonus target.
Finally, sticking with your search through the busy Christmas month can also put you a step ahead of the numerous new buyers who come to the market in the New Year. Early January is a very busy time of year for the property market. After the Christmas lull, thoughts turn to plans and resolutions for the year ahead or have to deal with the consequences of break ups over Christmas, which in turn triggers more people looking for properties.
December is a buyer’s market and as such, can be a great month to bag a bargain. So why not brave the cold, pull on a winter coat, get out there and house hunt.