During these periods the number of homes sold can be up to 20 per cent greater than other months.
Home sales are historically at their lowest levels during the mid winter period of July and August and the holiday months of December and January.
Another factor influencing the seasonal pattern in real estate is the movement of people resulting from changes in employment or educational commitments. This usually coincides with the end of summer.
Home opens are usually a good indicator of market activity. In warmer months people are more likely to do inspections, while in winter the cooler conditions, shorter days and footy matches on the TV keep a lot of people indoors at weekends.
Despite fewer sales occurring in winter, the average time taken to sell properties does not vary a great deal throughout the year. Fewer sales in winter is usually a result of fewer properties for sale.
Those who are serious about home buying aren’t too concerned about the weather, but interestingly it seems that those who do make a decision about buying in winter do so after visiting fewer homes.
As we approach the winter months it’s important to adapt selling strategies accordingly.
Advertising can be more important in winter to attract the more serious buyers. And if it is cold and wet on the day of a home open, it pays to take some sensible steps to keep the place warm, dry, well lit and welcoming. A simple stand for umbrellas by the front door and a decent mat to keep the floors tidy can make a difference.
From a buyer’s perspective, a wet and windy day is a good opportunity to see how the home holds up, potentially exposing any faults with leaky roofs, rusty gutters or inadequate storm water drainage.
The median price has stabilised over the last six months and sales activity has increased. Even so, some sellers are keen to get a deal done so they can upgrade, downsize and move on. Astute winter buyers can use this environment to their advantage.