Are you thinking of getting onto the property ladder in the coming year? Or perhaps you are considering picking up an investment property to boost your savings and hopefully outpace the interest your bank are paying you. Timing can make a big difference to your chances of getting the best price, and there are a few times in the coming year when the odds will probably be stacked a little more firmly in your favour.
Why are Some Times Better Than Others?
This is essentially a matter of demand. Buyers tend to purchase at some times of the year more than others, and these favoured parts of the year become high-demand periods for the housing market. Conversely, the periods that are least favoured see very little demand. This brings down prices, and makes buyers more likely to accept a lower offer in order to secure a sale when they are finding it difficult.
One such low-demand period is already underway, so if you are ready to make your purchase you might want to act quickly and seize the opportunity. Buyers tend to be less active in the winter, when cold weather puts them off the idea of viewings, house moves, and potentially doing fix-up jobs on a new property. January is a low-demand period, with February picking up a little but still giving a relatively favourable climate to bargain-hunters. When Spring arrives, things pick up and sellers find it easy to secure a sale without offering lower prices.
Most predictions hold that it is decidedly better to buy before the general election this year than afterwards. As the country waits to find out which party, and which set of policies, will rule the UK for the coming years, there will be a lot of uncertainty in the housing market. This will put off many buyers, especially buy-to-let investors, who prefer to wait until they know the situation. The result will be low demand and a better chance of securing a property at a good price. When the election is over, it is expected that this pent up demand will be suddenly released, and the housing market will receive a flood of buyers resulting in high competition levels.
The End of the Year
It may seem like a long way off, but the last four months year could be a good time to buy a property. This is true for much the same reasons as the fact that the market is currently seeing low competition. Autumn and, later, Winter will have arrived once again. Demand for properties will drop off after the relatively busy summer period. If you want some time to pull together a bigger deposit, get ready to pass mortgage affordability checks, then the later part of the year could be a good choice. September is often a good time to buy. At this time demand has dropped off reasonably suddenly after the summer, and many people remain on holiday.