I was out with a landlord from Trinity last week viewing one of the properties featured on The Edinburgh Property Blog that he was thinking about buying to rent out. When we were chatting, he said that he was going to stop looking for buy to let properties until the New Year as December is not a good month to buy given that everybody was more interested in shopping and parties than properties in December.
Well, that got me thinking.
True, December is one of the quietest months of the year for house sales with only around 6% of Edinburgh house sales being agreed in December compared to 10% plus in the peak Spring and Summer months.
However, this can be an opportunity to get a good deal.
Your bids look better
When other potential buyers are taking a break from property hunting to shop and party, a keen seller will be really happy to see you and a lack of other bids will make your ‘competitive’ bid seem more appealing. This year it is a particularly good idea to carry on looking for properties while other potential buyers are distracted as, at the moment, property demand is outstripping supply so by hunting for properties when it is quieter and you stand a better chance of snapping up good property at a competitive price.
You might get a better mortgage
Another reason to property hunt in December is that with many people distracted by Christmas you are also likely to find mortgage lenders aren’t quite as busy as normal either. This means your application may be dealt with quicker and you could even get a better deal.
Lenders have certainly been competing harder in the buy to let market recently and many fixed rates and fees have been cut as a result.
In my experience, towards the end of the year many lenders are either eager to get business on the books before the end of the year so they can hit their bonus targets or to start building a pipeline of business to go towards next year’s bonus target.
Finally, sticking with your search through the busy Christmas month can also put you a step ahead of the numerous new buyers who come to the market in the New Year. Early January is a very busy time of year for the property market. After the Christmas lull, thoughts turn to plans and resolutions for the year ahead or have to deal with the consequences of break ups over Christmas, which in turn triggers more people looking for properties.
I looked on the property sales websites this morning and spotted that there are around 1,256 properties in Edinburgh for sale at the moment ranging from 1 bedroom flats costing £57,000 to 7 bedroomed palaces costing over £4.5 million and some of these properties having been on the market for over a year.
I am not wanting to be seen as a party pooper but December can be a good month to bag a buy to let bargain and I am sure that you can multi-task and look for a property bargain in Edinburgh as well as shop and party in December!
We would be delighted to be dragged away from our shopping and partying to have a chat with you and advise you about the Edinburgh property market in general or specific properties that you are looking at. We don't charge for that advice. If you want some advice, phone me on 0131 603 4570 or email me (firstname.lastname@example.org).