List your home at Christmas?
When I first started selling real estate, 28 years ago, the Christmas Holidays were a dead zone for activity; both transactions closed and written. We don’t see many closings after December 15th and before January 1st. However, I will say in the past several years, our clients have done well by staying listed over this period of time. I will tell you why.
I have met some of my best clients over the holidays. The way I look at it, if someone is going to drag you away from your family and friends, they are typically going to be serious buyers. Quite often these buyers are very busy individuals who haven’t had the time to look because of the demands placed upon them by their jobs. So, when I get that call on New Years that someone wants to look at something, I am quick to answer. I have sold 4 homes on New Year’s Eve, all very substantial transactions.
Inventory tends to be lighter during the holiday period. If you are the only option in your price bracket, and someone needs to buy something, for example a job transfer, you will hopefully be able to grab that buyer.
In Niagara on the Lake, the spring market has started sometime in January over the past few years. If you wait for March to list your property, you could be too late. January and February over the past two years have been our number 1 and 2 months for written transaction. I think that you want to hit the ground running into the New Year. If you wait too long, you will see more competition. I don’t want any competition for my clients. I want to see bidding wars, which is becoming a not so uncommon phenomenon lately. The principle of supply and demand is powerful in the housing market, especially in our small finite market in NOTL.
Online shopping for houses is the way of the present and the future. Today, buyers never stop looking on the net. The way I look at it, over the holidays, they have even more time for it. I think that this fact has something to do with why we have had such buoyant January and February’s. So… if your house is not online, how are these Xmas shoppers going to see it? I see it as a missed opportunity.
My final point: Let’s face it, your house will never be dressed up as nicely. All those subtle little discrepancies can be covered up with a big ol’ tree, garland and lights. Keep your house on the market over the holidays!