With the New Year being a time for new resolutions and fresh starts, could this year finally see you buying or selling in the area? When Dry January fades, or Veganuary leaves you wanting, perhaps the promise of a new pad could be just the incentive you need to make this your best year yet.
With the housing market remaining buoyant throughout Devon and Cornwall there are plenty of opportunities to maximise your move, whatever your reasons. In this stunning part of the country, a relaxed way of life with plenty of access to sandy beaches and beautiful countryside, finding your next home is the gateway to a new lifestyle for you and your family.
From the iconic architecture of Plymouth Hoe, to the sprawling country cottages dotted throughout the West Country, there has never been a better time to make your move.
Whilst there are always many reasons for moving or investing in the region, one factor remains the same jumping aboard the property bandwagon during January offers benefits to both buyers and sellers alike.
With the excess of the holiday season still weighing heavy on the hips, many of us trudge our way through the month without inspiration. Those that look beyond the cold weather and long dark nights however, are turning their thoughts to their aspirations for the year ahead.
The first month of the year is also notoriously hard on personal finances as we suffer the fallout from the Christmas shopping frenzy. But, if you are motivated to go house hunting, and your finances can take it, January is actually a very good time to think about buying your new home.
If you have spent your Christmas break scouring the property websites now is the time to get out there and get viewing. Country cottage gardens may look divine in May, and coastal apartments look like a film set in the summer, trudging around on a chilly January day may not feel like fun. You may need to wrap up warm but you could actually find that you really are in with a chance of bagging a “hot” property at this time of year.
Sellers that have been on the market since before the traditional downturn in November, may now be keen to sell and will look favourably at offers. In the same vein, those that are new to the market, but keen to move, may also consider a good offer as they may wish to cash in their investment sooner rather than later. Also, January usually sees a higher number of divorce applications than any other time of year we’ll just leave that one with you.
Another important fact about purchasing during the darkest month of this year is the potential to pick up a good mortgage deal. Whilst housing prices are not expected to do anything too significant over the next 12 months, the mortgage market may be facing a bit of a boost. With first time buyers being incentivised and welcomed back to the market and investors bowing out with changes in tax laws, your lender may be able to offer you a good deal on your next mortgage.
Having just laid out some great reasons why it’s a good time to buy this month, it seems a bit unfair on our poor sellers. Apparently you will all be reducing your homes and running for the hills, eager to get away from them. Fortunately though, this is not the case.
Selling a home in the winter does have some particular challenges associated with it, but January is not the dead zone you may think it is. Our plucky buyers, full of enthusiasm for the year ahead can only buy what is available to them, and this is where you get to take the reins again.
A lack of new instructions throughout December and a slow increase in January means that demand usually outstrips supply. The advantage of this of course is that you have more control over the price you want to achieve even though it is not just about the price. You will no doubt want to find a buyer who is in a position to meet your particular timescale requirements. Long chains are no good of you are in a hurry, whereas a cash buyer chomping at the bit can cause you grief if you are looking for find something rare and unusual.
If you are prepared to wait until the Spring to secure a sale, getting your property ready to market in January gives you enough time to undertake any improvements in readiness for an influx of Spring buyers.
All that said, your perfect buyer will be out there somewhere and come in all shapes and sizes, and usually one of the following:
If their youngest has finally flown the nest, or the New Year brings the promise of new opportunities, January is a good time for those looking to downsize. Freeing up equity, being shot of unused rooms or planning on spending more time travelling the world than cleaning the home are just some of the reasons to downsize this January.
On the opposite scale, buying a bigger property is an expensive but much sought after move for many young families throughout the UK. Buying up the property chain is a process that most of us go through, from a first time flat to a forever home, buyers looking to upsize keep the marketing moving.
These buyers are becoming more and more prevalent and register in their droves this time of year. Fed up with living in busy cities their New Year resolution is to move to areas for a more relaxed and outdoor lifestyle and Devon and Cornwall are becoming the destination to move to.
After a fall in demand from this sector due to the Stamp Duty changes these buyers are now coming back looking to benefit from the tax advantages of furnished holiday lets and usually buy with cash. They like to buy in the New Year so as to take advantage of the income they can receive in the Spring and Summer months from their new acquisition. The MD of Beach Retreats Andrew Easton is very positive about the holiday letting market this year:
“We’ve seen a very strong year for holiday letting; the school holiday weeks all fully booked, but occupancy in the shoulder months, for example September and October, is not far behind, supported by a still-mild climate, quieter tourist hot-spots and more flexible arrival and departure dates. The long term outlook is also positive with more guests making a reservation further in advance for the following year, rather than historical trends towards last-minute bookings.”
Whatever type of buyer, or seller you are, this coming year could be the year for you and a new home. Here at Chartsedge we are always on hand to help buyers and sellers with the new start they are looking for. Feel free to get in touch with Gail, Miles or Nicki to see how we can help you.