Christmas can really throw out the listing cycle when it comes to selling a property. Understanding this will help you to list your property for sale at the right time, and will create an opportunity for you if you are a buyer. Here’s what normally happens when an agent lists a property.
The Typical Listing Cycle
When a real estate agent lists a property for sale, they are granted a 90 day exclusive agency period (this time may vary). The first week of this is taken up by communicating with the owner about advertising and inspections, etc. In a lot of cases it is at least one week after a property is listed that it is first advertised.
The property will be new on the agent’s website, may feature in print media, and potential buyers are contacted. By this stage the agent has already used up around about 35 to 40 days of their exclusive period. They don’t really have long to go and without any fresh marketing, the agent may become desperate.
Now, Lets Throw in a Curve Ball- Christmas
Statistics show that the volume of both enquiries and sales always drops off in the weeks leading up to Christmas. This occurs no matter what the state of the market is.
So for probably 2 to 3 weeks before Christmas there is reduced level of enquiries, and then for 2 weeks over Christmas and New Year there is next to no enquiry.
Put this into context with the 60 day listing period and things become very interesting. A vendor needs to list their property with an agent no later than mid to late October to have an honest and full blown crack at selling their property. List any later than this and your sales campaign will be compromised.
People think it is just those that list in December that will have it bad, but think about if you were to list in mid to late October. Remember it takes about a week before you property to be first advertised, which means the first 4 weeks of advertising will be run through the quietest time of the year, and may not even make 4 weeks before Christmas comes.
So if you ever plan on selling your home at this time of year, ask yourself whether you can wait until the New Year, which is seasonally when property enquiry is at its highest. Perhaps get everything in place: interview agents, arrange appraisals and spend your Christmas break readying your house and gardens. Sign up an agent in the first week of January and hit the ground running!