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The Real Deal / Active season for house hunters

Conventional wisdom is that the holiday season is "dead" as far as real estate transactions are concerned. Yet I was out working with buyers on the second Sunday in December. And so were quite a few of my colleagues.

Truth is, we didn't have much inventory to show buyers -- because conventional wisdom also recommends taking already-listed properties off the market in mid-November and relisting them after Jan. 1. It also cautions waiting until after the New Year to debut new listings.

This is where conventional wisdom and I part company. Every year, I watch many properties accept offers during the last six weeks of the year. Some of these homes sat on the market during the summer and fall. But they became more in demand late in the year once they had less competition. In fact, since mid-November, 31 properties in Westport and 14 in Weston have accepted offers or gone under contract. That doesn't sound so dead to me!

So here's the thing: If your house is already listed, why not keep it on the market during December? If you're all set to list in January, why wait? Inventory is low. Ready, willing and able buyers are out there looking. We agents are frustrated that we have so little to show them.

You never know. You may be rewarded with an offer -- or even two -- this holiday season. What a gift!

Evi Coghlan's "The Real Deal" appears every other Friday. She is a licensed real estate agent with the Riverside Avenue office of Coldwell Banker and a former marketing consultant to Fortune 100 companies. She may be reached at 203-247-6691, by emailing her at evi@evicoghlan.com or visiting www.evicoghlan.com.