In before Christmas: Tips and advice on how being organised before the festive period can offer up some distinct advantages to those wanting move before Christmas.

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Whether it be a new or pre-owned home, there is a distinct advantage to buying around the festive season. If you are organised and prepared to be flexible then you could grab yourself a bargain. As the housing market typically slows down during the festive period, canny buyers are prept, ready to take full advantage of home buyers offers and vendors who are more serious about moving. If your Christmas wish is to move into a new home over the festive period, then now is the time to look out for the many incentives on offer by home developers, who – like you, are also keen to see you settled into a new home with the tree and decorations up for all to see. Here are some pointers on how to get your home to the top if the list when it comes to selling:

Less is More

De-cluttering not only makes the property look tidier but also more spacious. Clear surfaces of excess items and if you have children try to limit the amount of toys on show.

Tone Down the Decor

Neutral colours really do improve your chances of finding a buyer or tenant.

Not only do people have very different tastes when it comes to colour schemes but neutral colours will appeal to the majority. Avoid clashing colours and loud patterns if you want to sell or rent quickly.

Put Your Buyer’s/Renter’s Hat On

Imagine yourself as the prospective buyer/tenant viewing your property for the first time. What would you think? Putting your ‘ buyer’s hat’ on helps when preparing your property ready for the market.

Smells

A fresh smelling home always helps. Air the property before any viewing and try to remove any unwanted smells, from bins to animals.

You don’t have to go overboard and bake bread or filter coffee but a prospectie buyer will certainly notice an off putting smell when they first arrive. Keep your home odour-free and feeling fresh and new.

Keep it Warm

Ensure that your home is warm. Those viewing a property are generally put off if a house or flat feels cold. Even in summer ensure that the property is not chilly!

Show Your Property in the Best Light

Good lighting improves the look of any property. Even if it means switching on a few lamps or overhead lights this will make the place look as light as possible.

Your Garden Can Help Sell Your Home

Don’t neglect your garden when dressing up your property. The garden is an essential part of any home and could help you clinch the deal if it looks good!

Dress Up Empty Properties

Empty properties need to be ‘dressed up’ to help maximise the chances of it selling/renting quickly. It doesn’t have to be costly. Borrow some furniture and decor to make it look more like a ‘home’.

Do the Jobs You Have Been Putting off

This means touching up any paint, filling in holes and making any small repairs in order to improve the appearance of your property. Make sure that

the front door looks good after all this is the first thing they will see.

How Clean is Your House?

Give your property a good clean before any viewing and this includes any communal areas. Having a clean house or flat can make all the difference when it comes to making a good first impression.

Finances

Make sure you have taken to the steps to secure your mortgage well in advance.

Inform Estate Agents

Vendors who are keen to move before Christmas should not be afraid to let their Estate Agent/Buyers know. How will they know unless you tell them.

Solicitors

When deadlines are fairly tight, we recommend hiring a solicitor that offers a fixed-price “no sale, no fee” conveyancing service. This means they have more incentive to be efficient.

Removals

Pick a reliable removals company that can help you move over the holidays. Liaise with them and keep them up-to-date with any changes that may occur. A good removals company will make the hassle of packing up a home and relocating a pleasurable experience.

Many of these pointers will seem quite obvious or straight forward, but when asked, these were the key reasons that buyers said made a huge difference to them when it came to buying a house.

So what advantages are there for buying a property over the festive period? Here are a few more tips for you….

New Homes

There are plenty of ways to find a cut-priced brand-new home. Visit the ‘special offers’ section of smartnewhomes.com which lists not only reduced prices, but incentives like builders paying moving costs, part-exchanging your old home and developers who will fund your mortgage for the first year of ownership.

You can also see which government incentives, such as NewBuy or Help to Buy are on offer, via the same new homes portal.

Home developers are keen to get as many buyers signed up as possible at the end of the year, especially if they are coming towards the end of a particular phase. And, if you can get carpets, curtains and vouchers for major department stores thrown in, then maybe Christmas presents are sorted out as well.

Moving into a home gives you have the benefit of just unloading your furniture and placing it wherever you like – maybe the Christmas tree can be the first thing you set up. Also, ‘buying new’ gives you the security of 10 years building cover as well as a brand-new heating systems that can cope with even the harshest of winters.

Pre-owned

As with developers, the majority of home owners who are still advertising their home for sale over the festive period are keen to move. They may well be willing to pay stamp-duty fees, removals costs or even drop the price significantly. With both, there is a definite sense of urgency that can be of benefit to you.

Be prepared to negotiate, and negotiate hard. If you are flexible, organised and co-operative then you can certainly pick up a bargain.

For first time buyers, the process is a simple one: Do your homework, get your finances in order and then play the game. For those who need to sell before they purchase, this becomes a slightly more difficult – but not impossible- task.

Finally….be organised

As mentioned previously, the housing market does slow down in the lead-up to Christmas, which means that there are fewer buyers on the look out. What this also means though, is that there are fewer properties on offer and those looking, tend not to be time wasters.

So, whether you are looking for a new build or pre-owned property, there are some definite advantages of moving over the festive period.

In summary, get yourself organised and you could find your sale going through in rapid time. Remember, potential buyers will view a number of properties before deciding and therefore yours needs to stand out from the crowd.

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