If you’re thinking of cashing in and selling your property to take advantage of the current hot market, there are things you need to do to ensure you get the price you want, fast.
- Pick the right agent
There are two types of agents – one works for the seller while the other works for the buyer, Kelly says. “You want the first type, someone who is an advocate for you as the seller. You also want someone who is hungry for a sale for you.”
It is often worth selecting one of the major players in the area because more clients will go to that agent and that means more potential buyers, he continues. “Selling effectively is like a funnel… The more people who see the property being advertised the more there are likely to visit and be interested in buying. So you want to create that funnel.”
If you want to get the best bang for your buck, don’t use emotion to choose your agent, Renovating for Profit CEO Cherie Barber says.
Rather than relying on personal feelings, think about key issues like the number of active buyers an agent has on their database and how many properties an agent has sold in the street and in the suburb, when selecting an agent.
- List at the right time
Getting the timing right is crucial because if a property stays on the market for more than eight weeks it reflects badly on the property itself. While many people realise that selling in a “boom” market is a good idea, many don’t realise that different times of the year can have a positive or a negative impact on a sale.
For example, Kelly recommends taking property off the market over the Christmas period. “Instead aim to sell around the back end of winter, just moving into spring. That is when more buyers are around, but many sellers are still hibernating. The demand is higher around July than at other times in the year.”
Also, if you have just renovated a property you need to think about seasonal peaks and troughs, Barber agrees. “Maybe don’t put the property on the market right away if you finish it towards the end of the year.”
- Set a realistic price
Working out a realistic selling price for their property is the next step for a vendor. This involves conducting significant research on the area the property is in. Factors like location, aspect, noise, traffic, proximity to amenities, neighbours, school district and the current state of the local market all need to be considered.
Setting a price based on emotional attachment to a property is wrong, Kelly says. “Just because you think your property is amazing and the best in the area, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it is. That’s why it is essential to know what the market actually sees your property as worth.”
Before listing and marketing their property, vendors also need to decide whether to sell in an auction or via private treaty or negotiation. According to Kelly, auctions create a sense of urgency and intensity around the sale. “They force decisions to be made and increase the level of emotional buying, so they can increase the price a property sells for.”
- Create the best impression
Ensuring a property is presented in a way which shows off its features is a key element in the sales process. First impressions count for a lot with potential buyers, so vendors should do all they can to make their property stand out – in a good way.
First of all, make sure your property is spic and span – and that any renovations are complete, Renovating for Profit CEO Cherie Barber says. “Don’t leave anything unfinished or untidy-looking. It is unnecessary and will put a dent in your returns. Properties should be completed in their entirety. Make sure that everything needing to be done is actually finished.”
Property styling is worth considering because it creates an illusion that people want to buy, Barber says. “While you should declutter a property, it is a big mistake to show an empty house when you are hoping for a sale. People like to be able to visualise things. It is too hard to arouse emotion in potential buyers if you show empty rooms.”
Always bring in a professional to do the styling for you, Barber emphasises. “You simply can’t do it as well as a professional stylist. They have that special knack which brings a property to life. Also, without styling, properties take longer to sell and go for a lower price. So styling does end up paying for itself.”
5. Market effectively
Once a property is styled and ready to go, it is crucial for the vendor to market it effectively to generate as much interest as possible, REBAA president Jacque Parker says. “The number one way to do so is via internet advertising. Up to 90% of buyers use RealEstate.com.au and Domain.com.au to look at real estate.”
Websites are the most common resource employed by potential buyers to find properties, Arthur Charlaftis, GM Sales & Operations at realestate.com.au, says. There are three things he advises agents and vendors to think about to optimise their online listings.
Using photos is integral to drawing potential buyers in and getting them interested in your property, Charlaftis adds. “Make sure the shots you use are professionally staged and shot and, if necessary, add more throughout your online campaign to keep buyers interested.”
Top tips to prepare your property to sell well
- Make sure any renovations are complete and everything looks clean and tidy.
- Get a professional to do the styling for a visual WOW factor.
- Ensure both the photos and the copy in your marketing material give the best possible impression of your property.
- Make sure your property always feels light and bright.
- Ensure your property’s temperature suits the temperature of the day during viewings: turn on the heating if it is cold, turn on the cooling system if it is hot.
- Don’t forget about the effect of smell on potential buyers, so brew coffee, or bake cookies before viewings.
- Think outside the square when presenting the property – eg: provide “selling cards” for each room, or host an auction party.
- Go beyond the call of duty and provide building, pest and asbestos inspection reports for potential buyers.