Natasha Wright, county sales manager at Arnolds Keys’ County Hub in Aylsham, discusses the housing market around Boxing Day.

Boxing Day, it’s a peculiar British phenomenon. It dates back to the 19th century, when wealthy families would pack gifts in boxes for the less fortunate. 

Families of workers and servants would receive special Christmas boxes from their employers and be given the day off to spend with their families.

Eastern Daily Press: Natasha Wright, county sales manager at Arnolds Keys’ County Hub in AylshamNatasha Wright, county sales manager at Arnolds Keys’ County Hub in Aylsham (Image: Arnolds Keys)

In more recent times, Boxing Day has taken on a more commercial significance. 

Although the trend has receded a little in recent years, the Boxing Day sale is still a big event in retail.

For many years, the day after Christmas Day was the busiest of the year for holiday companies taking bookings.

In the housing market, the ‘Boxing Day bounce’ is still referred to as a time when people cleared away the crackers and the turkey and started planning their next home. But is it still a thing?

There can be no doubt that the advent of property portals like Rightmove have made such post-festive searches easier. 

Such websites do report a surge in visits on December 26, so perhaps there is some truth in the ‘bounce’. But is it the best time to launch your home onto the market?

First of all, let’s remember that quantity and quality are not the same thing. Yes, thousands of people may casually log on to browse the homes for sale while they eat yet another mince pie, with one eye on that re-run of The Great Escape on the telly.

But in their distracted, sherry-induced state, are they really paying attention?

If you do decide to launch your home onto the market on Boxing Day, is there a danger that it will get lost in the blizzard of other homes?

Maybe it’s time to think and do different, as they say here in Norfolk. 

If you are serious about selling, there is still time to get your property onto the market before Christmas. It will still be there for the Boxing Day browsers, but will also catch the eye of potential buyers leading up to the festive period, when far fewer homes are launched.

Alternatively, you may consider that the serious potential buyers are more likely to wait until the new year to begin searching, doing so in the more sober month of January. 

Those many Boxing Day properties will have slipped down Rightmove and been replaced with the newly-launched ones.

It can be tempting to follow the flock and do the predictable thing. But at Christmas, the only sheep we really want to see are those being watched over by the awe-struck shepherds.