• A guide to buying over the Christmas period

    Keen buyers are being urged to keep their eyes peeled for property bargains over summer, as experts report an emerging trend for vendors to list earlier in the year.

  • Keen buyers are being urged to keep their eyes peeled for property bargains over summer, as experts report an emerging trend for vendors to list earlier in the year.

    The Christmas and New Year period is traditionally when real estate activity – like the rest of us – slows down and takes a break, but this old rule looks like it may be a thing of the past. 

    With a pool of pent-up buyers ready to pounce, agents are reporting more homes on the market in mid-January and early February.

    Matthew Hayson, director of Cobden and Hayson in Sydney, says the Christmas holiday shutdown is getting shorter and shorter.

    “Five to ten years ago it was an unwritten rule among agents that you use Australia Day as a weekend to come into the market, but what we’ve seen in more recent times is you might see property from around January 10 onwards,” Hayson said.

    For buyers, the lead-up to Christmas is the perfect time to find bargains, as vendors who have listed their properties will be keen to sell.

    Image: Unsplash Sean Oulashin

     “They might have had a failed campaign in late November, and the seller’s motivation is quite high. Also, the feeling of having Christmas coming towards you almost acts as a trigger,” Hayson said.

    “If there’s an offer on the table that may have been laughed at a month earlier, the seller might be thinking about what their next best option is.

    Rob Elsom, director of Hocking Stuart, North Melbourne, also urged buyers to stay vigilant in the lead-up to Christmas.

    “Vendors can correct their expectations leading up to Christmas, so I wouldn’t take my eyes off the real estate market, as you may see some really good opportunities,” Elsom said.

    Heading into the New Year, Elsom urged vendors to think about listing early.

    “There’s a pent-up demand in late December and early January where there haven’t been any properties come onto the market, so there’s a huge pool of buyers by the time we get to February,” Elsom said.

    “We often say to people that it’s not a bad idea to put your property on the market the week of Christmas, with the auction held in the second week of February, because you’re not competing with a lot of properties at the same time.”

    Image: Unsplash Tessa Rampersad

     Buyer’s advocate Frank Valentic from Advantage Property Consulting, urged buyers to take advantage of less competition over the holiday break.

    “If you like something, make a strong offer,” Valentic said.

    “A lot of properties might be scheduled for February auctions, so if you like them, do your due diligence and give it a shot. If you’re making a good offer, some of these vendors might take it so they can enjoy their holiday break,” he said.

    “You’ve got less competition from other buyers, so I think it makes sense that if you’re around and there’s opportunities there, there’s going to be fewer buyers bidding against you.”

    However, Valentic warned that the business of buying during the break might be made more difficult, as mortgage brokers, lawyers and conveyancers were likely to be closed.

    This article was originally published on realestate.com.au, ‘A guide to buying & selling over Christmas

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  • Disclaimer:

    While such material is published with permission, RAMS is not responsible for its accuracy or completeness.  This information is general in nature and has been prepared without taking your objectives, needs and overall financial situation into account. For this reason, you should consider the appropriateness of the information to your own circumstances and, if necessary, seek appropriate professional advice.