Tuesday, 16 August 2022

Housebuyers go online over the festive period


Housebuyers go online over the festive period

THOSE looking to sell in the New Year should take note of activity patterns on the internet over previous festive periods, writes Lucy Boon.

Property portals, including the Henley Standard’s own at www.henleystandard.co.uk/
property, are increasingly showing a surge in visits, starting on Boxing Day and continuing an upward trend during the holiday period.

Christmas 2014 saw Boxing Day with more than 1.3 million visits to Rightmove (a near three-fold increase on Christmas Day), rising to more than 2.2 million by the first working day of the year.

And by Christmas 2015, Rightmove reported an even larger 195 per cent increase in visits between Christmas Day and New Year. Fellow property portal Zoopla said it also saw website visits and app downloads double over the festive period.

Christmas finds many people at home, spending time together — which often prompts the realisation that their home is now too large/
too small/too far away. The result is that everyone jumps online to have a look at what’s available.

Miles Shipside of Rightmove said: “There are nine days of holidays, starting on Christmas Eve, when people have time on their hands to window shop for new properties from the comfort of their own home, often testing out their new tablet and smartphone gifts in the process.

“While sellers may not want to be bothered by having viewers in the house over the break, it makes sense for prospective buyers to be able to look online, whet their appetite and contact the estate agent to take it further in the New Year.”

Henley’s local agents say the spike in online searches creates an ideal opportunity for sellers and landlords to list their properties online now and not to wait until the New Year.

For instance, at Hamptons International on Hart Street, lettings manager Katie White says the agency’s own data shows a spike in online activity over Christmas and New Year.

She said: “For the past three years we have noticed increasing numbers of visitors to our website looking for properties either to rent or buy during the week between Christmas and New Year.

“With families gathering over the festive period and using the time together to make property-related decisions, our advice to would-be home sellers or landlords is clear — if you are thinking of putting your property on the market in the foreseeable future, make the most of the seasonal spike.”

James Butler, sales manager at the Henley branch of Hamptons, said: “The market has changed and gone are the days when November and December were the quietest months of the year.

“However, the majority of sellers and landlords are still waiting until the New Year to list their property online, so are missing out on this surge of property searches. We want our customers to get off to a flying start in 2017 by listing with us now in time for the seasonal rush.”

James and Katie also said that apart from Hamptons’ own website, and using the Henley Standard’s property portal, the agency offers “unique online coverage” whereby customers see their properties listed on Rightmove, Zoopla, Prime Location, Propertywide and many other property websites.

Hamptons branches are open every day across the Christmas period except for Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day to take enquiries and make viewing appointments.


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