FAQ - Page 1

Should I sell my house at auction or with a fixed price?
Deciding the best method of selling your home depends on a number of factors, so speak to an experienced agent for advice. Each method has its own distinct advantages; for instance, auctions work well if your house is unique or likely to draw special interest. By definition auctions are meant to create a spirited bidding contest where the winner takes all. Buyers may even be tempted to pay more than the house is really worth when someone else is bidding against them; naturally that’s a great advantage for the seller. 

Another advantage is that auctions are definite sales; they require a non-refundable 10 per cent deposit on the spot and the balance within about 30 days. In other words, it’s extremely unusual for an auction sale to fall through once it’s completed. Sounds perfect? In many cases it is. But auctions aren’t necessarily for everyone.

Keep in mind the entire marketing campaign is focused on one day – Auction Day – and, also, some buyers shy away from auctions because of the uncertainty of the price, the tension of the bidding process, the 10 per cent deposit on the spot and the stricter settlement conditions. 

What are the benefits of selling at a price?
Many buyers prefer to look at homes with a defined price or at least a ballpark estimate of what you’re expecting. “Private Treaty” and “Offers Over” sales are examples of fixed price selling and, like auctions, they have advantages you’ll want to consider.

One advantage is that fixed price sales usually attract a wider range of buyers than auctions and, because the price is nominated, they’re more likely to be buyers in your specific price bracket. More buyers means more competition, which may, in turn, mean even higher offers than you’d expected. 

Another advantage is that you’ll have time to consider any offers made; you may even sell on the first weekend and save further advertising costs. But conversely there’s less pressure on buyers to commit; they can procrastinate and, even after an offer is made, they can withdraw without penalty right up until the exchange date.
My house is so beautiful it will sell itself!  Why do I need an agent?
The answer is contained in your first nine words. Every owner thinks their home is a castle – it’s only natural. But that also makes it very hard for an owner to see the negatives – the rooms that might look tired and the cracks or marks that have been there for so long they don’t really notice them anymore. It’s extremely difficult for an owner to be impartial about the sale of their home and that can have two dangerous consequences.

Firstly, owners find it very hard to negotiate because they have a personal stake in the result; secondly, private sales often attract bargain-hunters who believe owners can’t negotiate. A professional real estate agent has the advantage of seeing a home as the public will see it as well as the ability to know its real value and the experience to present it perfectly. Most importantly, a trained agent has the skills to protect you from the bargain-hunters by negotiating professionally on your behalf.   
Other agents have more listings than you and they’re offering a cheaper fee. Why shouldn’t I use them? 
One way agents can reduce their commissions is to take on the sale of multiple properties simultaneously – sometimes trying to sell dozens of properties at once to maximise the income while minimising the amount of time they have to spend on each one.

Unfortunately for you, as the seller, it can often mean your home gets lost in the crowd, receiving very little time from the agent to show off its unique attractions to potential buyers and even less effort to keep you up-to-date with the progress of the sales campaign. 

Is the reduction in commission really worth such a reduction in personal service? Agents should balance the number of sales they look after at one time – that will ensure you always receive consistent, relevant communication and your potential buyers will get personal attention at exhibitions or private viewings of your home.
Why does it have to be so expensive to sell a home?
Organising a successful home sale is a bit like organising a wedding ceremony that will not only last for one day but also continue for several weeks. It takes planning, communication, co-ordination and an understanding of everything required to make the event smooth, stress-free and legal.

There’s an initial meeting to establish your exact circumstances, some dressing up and professional styling to make your home look perfect on the day, a specialised photographer to employ, invitations to write, tradespeople to arrange, announcements to put in the media, legal searches to complete, signs and internet alerts to produce – plus, of course, the design and printing of personalised brochures that will be handed to guests on the day. 

A wedding is likely to be a ceremony you’ll only experience once or twice in your life and so is the sale of your home. It takes a team of professionals dedicated to ensuring your special day is memorable for all the right reasons.

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