Forget Brexit: if you want to sell your home this year, list it before 21 October

Waiting to see what the Brexit negotiations bring? Don't, if you want to sell before Christmas 2019

Couple at estate agent's window
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Selling your house and waiting to see if the situation around Brexit improves? You're making a mistake. According to a new study*, if you want to sell before Christmas 2019, you'll need to put your house up for sale by 21st October at the latest. 

We previously reported that 31 October is the cut-off date (not least because of Brexit), but now it looks like you have even less time than that to sell a property this year. 

The fact is, the average times it takes to sell a property have remained stable over the past four years (this includes the years since the Brexit vote), with houses listed for sale in October taking an average of 61 days to sell. 

Do the maths, and you get 21st October as the latest date that would allow you to put the house on the market, snag (and keep a buyer), accept and offer, complete the paperwork and sell in time for the Christmas lull. 

Put the property up for sale in November or December, and prepare to wait even longer, with average selling times of 62 days. Plus you run the risk of your buyer – and possibly you – deciding that moving over the Christmas period is too much like hard work. Moving vans are harder to book; solicitors' go the the Caribbean (allegedly); and, of course, any time from mid-December just becomes a mad, Christmas themed rush, especially if you have children. And, of course, we all know with house moves that when the whole process starts to slow up, people begin to have second-thoughts – or see another property they like better.

And if you don't think you can beat the pre-Christmas rush? Put your house up for sale in January instead: this is the month when buyers are keenest and when properties sell fastest, with an average of 57 days. Plus there's no Christmas looming to slow things up.

But if you're set on selling now, make sure you read our guide to selling your house quickly

*Data from estate agent comparison website estateagent4me