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When is the Best Time of Year to Sell Your Property

One of the most common questions that we are asked by property sellers in Edinburgh and the Lothians is “when is the best time of year to sell my home?”. It’s an understandable question and the answer, or at least the common consensus, used to be simple. If you were looking to get the best price for your home, you should sell in spring when market activity is highest.

Whilst this may have been the consensus once, there have been some substantial changes in the property market over the last 15-20 years that have greatly reduced the impact of seasonality in the market.

In the first instance, advances in technology mean that it’s now much easier to do most of the things associated with buying or selling a home remotely. Buyers can browse for properties, access Home Reports, book viewings and see virtual tours online. When they see a property that they’re interested in they can contact their solicitor by email or mobile to place an offer on their behalf.

From the seller’s perspective, a good agent will be able to offer a professional viewing service meaning that viewers will still be able to see your property in person even if you are not readily available.

The introduction of Home Reports in December 2008 also represented a fundamental change in the market. Prior to their introduction it was sellers could get their home onto the market while incurring little cost, meaning that many people would put their home onto the market to ‘test the water’ and see if they received a suitably high offer. With a Home Report costing several hundred pounds and being required in order to market your home, properties coming to the market today are usually from people who are motivated to sell, when they need to sell.

The upshot of all of this is that buyers and sellers in the modern market are much less likely to time their moves around things like vacations, peak periods at work, or school holidays. Instead they will look to make their move due to other less seasonal factors like changes in family or employment, or simply when they see a property that they wish to purchase, and as a result the seasonality plays a far smaller role in today’s market.


So When is the Best Time to Sell

The reality is that there isn’t a single best time of year to buy or sell a property. Seasonal fluctuations are less pronounced than they once were and, whilst buyer activity is lower in some months like November and December, these are months where the number of properties coming onto the market is also lower, so the balance between supply and demand stays largely unchanged.

The one exception to this tends to be the first half of January. Buyers tend to start their property search almost as soon as the Hogmanay bells have stopped ringing, whilst most sellers tend not to be ready to get their home onto the market until later in January. As a result, there is much more demand from buyers than there is supply of homes coming onto the market so if you’re able to, the first two weeks of the new year tend to be the best time to attract as much interest as possible.

If you have a question about selling or buying a property, get in touch with Warners today on 0131 662 4747, or by email at and one of our team will be delighted to help.


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