The Best Times to Buy and Sell Property
Whether you’re looking to buy or sell property this year, the housing market is as competitive as ever. So, it can be helpful to have a little insight into the best times of year to enter the market.
To determine the best times to buy and sell property in 2022, we analysed Rightmove average house price data and average days to secure a buyer over the last two years. This allowed us to predict buying and selling trends for the next 12 months.
When is the best time to buy property
If the UK housing market this year mirrors 2021 levels (property patterns of recent years suggest it will do), then April will be the month with the lowest house prices.
Last year, April saw an average sale price of just £205,861 per property, which quickly shot up to £300,000+ as we entered the summer months of May-July. To offer context, the average sale price per property across the entirety of 2021 was £285,874.
Interestingly, preluding the April low, the property market saw a steady decline for a couple of months from February 2021, when the average home sold for £286,154 – meaning buyers who held out until April saved around 40%.
Comparing locations, the cheapest places to buy in the UK are perhaps unsurprisingly in the northern regions. The North East and Scotland are consistently the two most affordable areas for Brits, with prices in April 2021 coming in well-below the average at £161,994 and £169,649, respectively. In contrast, London, predictably, has the most expensive homes, with even the cheapest month for buyers last year coming in at over half a million pounds per property.
Analysing last year’s data more broadly, while no months came close to April’s low, January (£274,956) and December (£269,886) were among the best alternative times to buy. With property prices in each month still far-below the annual average, it’s clear that low buyer demand means sellers are happiest to knock off a percentage of their asking price in the winter months to get a deal over the line.
When is the best time to sell your home?
Analysing the length of time it took for property deals to complete in 2020 and 2021, we can comfortably predict that July-October will be the best time to sell your home in 2022.
Last year, outside of London, the average house sale took between 36-38 days to go through during the late summer-early autumn months, much quicker than the overall 2021 average of 42 days. In the capital, last year, the time it took for property to sell was a little longer than in other areas of the country – between 55-58 days – but still shorter than the annual London average of 62 days.
And 2020 was much the same story. July-October saw the typical property outside of the Capital sold in 54 days, compared to the year’s overall average of 63 days*. In London, again, the trend mirrors the rest of the country; the average property in the city sold in 51 days between July-October compared to the annual average of 63 days.
In contrast, the worst months to sell your home are in winter, as demand is down. If you find yourself in this position, save yourself the struggle and talk to our team about how we can help you sell your house fast.
How to get on the property ladder
Getting on the property ladder is an exciting time for anyone, but you might encounter unexpected challenges along the way. Whether you’re flying the nest or moving out of a rental, we’ve answered three common questions every first-time buyer should be asking in 2022:
How to arrange a house survey?
A house survey is a detailed inspection of a property that assesses its condition, as well as drawing focus to any areas of concern – all very useful things to know before buying your first home!
The best way to arrange a survey is through an independent, local professional rather than a big company, to receive a more personalised and thorough service. Importantly, your surveyor should also be RICS accredited.
Freehold vs leasehold?
Before buying a property, find out whether it’s a freehold or leasehold. While freehold means you own the building and surrounding land, a leasehold means you only own the building for the length of the lease.
What’s included in the house sale?
It’s important to know exactly what’s included in a property before you commit to buying. Ask for an inventory that outlines any fixtures and fittings that will be left.
With the housing market as competitive as ever, it can be helpful to know the best times to buy or sell your home! For even more expert insight from our experienced team, head on over to our blog.
*2020 sale period includes data collected between March 2020 – December 2020.