No Sign! The neighbours don’t need to know I want to sell my house.

There is nothing like selling a secret!

Look, my wife says I am one of the biggest cynics that our maker shovelled organs into, but every time I heard a client, or potential client say, “I don’t want a sign,” it was an automatic response from me of “Why?”

And the smile began to widen across my face as the answer was about to be fired back.

“We don’t want the neighbours to know we are selling.”

A clearly displayed and well portrayed sign still plays an important part in an all-round marketing strategy

At this point I made doubly sure that I was not chewing anything or taking a sip of any liquid, so I didn’t spray any debris over the phone or straight back across the table at my client when the answer I knew that was coming, came.

Let’s be honest here; a sign is not the be all and end of attracting buyers, however buyers are still looking for your sign as they are doing a drive-by or turning up to inspect; a sign is confirmation that they have come to the right place.

A clearly displayed and well portrayed sign still plays an important part in an all-round marketing strategy – whether you have hired an agent or have decided to sell your own home.

But back to the neighbour thing.

In my mind I couldn’t help but think, “Have you heard of a little thing called the internet?”

However, that’s not very professional is it?

It is a physical 24-hour sales person to complement the 24/7 pulling power of the internet

On occasions I have not been able to help myself and responded, almost subtly, with, “So when I am showing buyers around, who have probably parked three houses up the road and scratching their heads, when we are doing inspections your neighbours will think you have invited the JW’s in for a look round – three times in two days?!”

The professional answer?

“Your neighbours are going wise up pretty quick when strange people start coming to your house and cars are driving up and down the street at 25kmh. Also, a sign confirms to any buyer that they have come to the right place.  It is a physical 24-hour sales person to complement the 24/7 pulling power of the internet.”

(Subdued applause).

Basically, when you are selling, you want the whole world to know because the more people that talk about your home or property, the bigger the chance an interested set of ears may be waiting to hear all about your place.


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This Property Life- #1 Series 1

The stories of the people behind, and in front of, the scenes in Australia’s most talked about industry.

Jason’s Opens

The time ticked over to 1.45pm on Jason’s iPhone x, so it was all systems go; to pack up his brochures, cards and self-promotional material at the four bedder on Blake Circuit, Swynton, which, mind you, could have done with a lick of paint in the living room and possibly the c1997 cream carpet in the ‘plush’ bathroom replaced with some cheap and cheerful tiles.

“No luck today,” lamented a usually upbeat Agent Jason Merek-Sadowska, who told his owners that he expected “plenty” of interest come 1pm.

“How many buyers came through?”

“Ummm…none. But I forgot that the Bellcoast Pottery Extravaganza was on this weekend. So many people go to it.  Massive couple of days.”

“The owners will be pretty disappointed, and they are such nice people.  I think they went down to the Pottery show during the open home.”

“What will you tell them?”

“Look, it’s not an easy one. Sure, the Pottery thing played a big part, but it is a bit quiet at the moment.  This has only been on the market for seven weeks, so it might worthwhile for the owners to take up a bigger ad in the Eastcastle Daily for next week to drive a few more buyers to us.”

“What about the other open home you had two streets away, earlier on?”

Jason’s mood lifted noticeably.  “Went off,” flew straight from his mouth as he started packing his tools of trade, including the fold out open home sign covered mainly by his smiling face, into his newly leased Audi A5 with the hands free wi-fi fingerprint/face to voice recognition.

“Had twelve groups through that one. Might be an offer in the wings.”

“That doesn’t sound like it’s that quiet then?”

“Well, probs ‘patchy’ might be a better word.  This one’ll sell, eventually. I haven’t had a good chat to the owners for a couple of weeks.  I’ll sort something on Monday.”

Jason’s ringtone of the Bellcoast Blockers theme song belted out as he started the Audi, “Hi, yeah, just locked up and leaving now.  Yeah, went pretty well. Got a few follow ups to make, but I’ll get back to you Monday for a good chat.  How was the Pottery Show?”

And he didn’t even have to take his hands off the steering wheel to take the call as he kicked it in the guts to zoom away from Blake Circuit onto his next appointment.

Amazing innovation making the job of pros like Jason so much easier.

More from him later.

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The sky is falling, the sky is falling!

The story of Chicken-Little has been told over many centuries, and it’s moral is as true today as it was when it was written.

Someone experiences or witnesses an event, then proceeds to tell one and all that the end is nigh.

Sound familiar?

Around February this year (2018) there were plenty of Chicken-Littles saying the end is nigh.

And the property market has its share of Chicken-Littles; and trust me, after sixteens years serving in the front lines of real estate marketing and sales, I know there is never a shortage of them.

Around February this year (2018) there were plenty of Chicken-Littles saying the end is nigh – the market was about to plummet, wiping huge percentages off the value of properties right across the country.

Although the worst did not happen, the chicken chatter was enough to dent the confidence of buyers and as a result, some ‘robust’ property markets (remember; the Australian property market is a patch work quilt) began to see prices soften as buyers looked skyward for falling debris instead of pursuing their next property.

So, what do you do if you are trying to sell your own home and the market shifts from underneath you?

Yes.  Prices have fallen slightly to moderately in some areas, most noticeably in the ‘big guns’ of Sydney and Melbourne, which can then have a knock-on effect to regional areas as well.

It didn’t take long for me to notice that people in the process of private house sales were becoming a little anxious that their initial price expectations were not being met by the shift in buyer confidence.  And I know, no-one wants to acknowledge that an adjustment in expectation could be warranted.

So, what do you do if you are trying to sell your own home and the market shifts from underneath you?

First, you need to recognise the symptoms:

  1. Buyer enquiries may diminish or stop, as do physical inspections.
  2. Those buyers who do enquire/inspect are less than enthusiastic about making offers.
  3. Those who do make an offer serve up a number that feels like a punch in the gut.

(You) have the leverage to take advantage of buying into a another soft market.

Don’t despair, here is what you do in this type of market.

  1. Sit it out, wait for the market (buyers) to get over itself and meet your expectations on the bounce back.
  2. Take your home or property off the market and wait for the sign to shine over your expectations again.
  3. Meet the market, become competitive and ensure your presentation is bang on, your promotion is well targeted, and your price guide reflects that you are motivated to sell and be prepared to negotiate.

The big advantage to choosing plan C is that if you are planning to buy, the area in which you want to move to could be experiencing the same challenges, and the sooner you cash in your current property, the quicker you can load your bullets to head to the gunfight and have the leverage to take advantage of buying into a another soft market.  (Less buyers, more anxious sellers).

To be honest, the property market in general needed a breather; price increases brought on by bullet-proof buyers could not keep going.

All in all, this is a great market to deal in.  Those who stay in the game are most likely to come out winners or at worst, will parachute to a very soft landing.


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Engage, Engage, Engage: Talk to Buyers When You Sell Your Own Home.

Engage:  Establish a meaningful contact or connection with.

That definition alone says it all.

Life is all about rapport building.

The fastest and most reliable way to find out if a buyer is fair dinkum is to talk to them – and I mean ear to ear or face to face.

Today’s increasingly preferred methods of communication; text, messaging or emailing is killing the art of quick, genuine and productive rapport building.

Life is all about rapport building.

It is not restricted to the world of sales, and in this case private house sales.

Everyday we build some rapport with someone.

This doesn’t mean you want to know their life story, or share yours, or become BFF’s and gush over each other on FB.

The cashier at the supermarket, the plumber you call to fix the sewer pipes, your child’s teacher, work colleagues, the person you are sitting next to on the flight to London…you may not be aiming to be their best friend, but simple courtesies and acknowledgements go a long way to establishing a pleasant, short term relationship that should benefit both parties for the duration of what ever experience you are sharing.

When you sell your own property, rapport building with buyers is critical to your success.

This doesn’t mean you want to know their life story, or share yours, or become BFF’s and gush over each other on FB.

Engagement, rapport building, is purely, in the world of sales and transactions, a means to understanding the needs and situation that pertain to the other party and whether your needs and situation are aligned to theirs.

Take a recent conversation I had with a client whose property was pretty hot from the get go.

“Just pick up the phone!”

“Hi Craig, wow, we have had some good interest from buyers, but no-one has made an offer.”

“Ok, why do you think that is?”

“Well, I’ve sent them all emails to say put forward your best offer and we’ll consider it, but no-one has replied.”

“Have you called any or all of them?”


“Any wonder?! Get on the phone and talk to them.  Engage them, find out what they are thinking, what their needs are, why your property interests them.”

“Oh, do you think that will help?”

“Just pick up the phone!”

Texting, messaging, emailing can play an important role in documenting certain stages of an interaction, negotiation or transaction, but we are quickly going to these means as our default communication choice and so much can be lost or misinterpreted.

Engaging a buyer is merely an opportunity to chat in order to reveal, share and find common ground.

Leaving it all to chance by communicating via a screen only, is a sure-fire way to encounter frustration and confusion when you are an owner selling your house or property.


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What price will I get when I sell my house?

And there you have the $64,000 question…

As a traditional agent I was asked this very question on more than a thousand occasions by would-be sellers – and hold onto your hats – most of the time I couldn’t answer it.

“What you say you are a real estate expert and didn’t know how much a house or property would sell for?”

I was in the wrong game – and a mind reading show in Vegas was the obvious next step.

Yep. But…

The one thing I did know was the price ‘vicinity’ the property would fall into.

That vicinity was a pretty tight range.  To the exact dollar?  No!

If I, or any other agent in the country (or planet for that matter), could predict with 100% accuracy what any property would sell for, down to the last dollar, then I was in the wrong game – and a mind reading show in Vegas was the obvious next step.

And the minds that would need to be read are those of potential buyers – the market.

In actual fact, the property market is far more fluid than you might think.

Boy they can be a fickle lot; no matter whether their confidence is sky high or running a bit low.

Buyer sentiment can change overnight based on economic reporting from media, government and financial bodies. In actual fact, the property market is far more fluid than you might think.

The thing that EVERY home owner must understand is that sellers set the price, BUT buyers determine value.

For those clever souls who head down the path of private house sales, there can be a little bit of angst and trepidation when it comes time to determine your ‘list price’. But that is normal, and ‘gut feeling’, coupled with local knowledge, is almost always right.

My finely tuned ‘bullshitometer’ would wail like an air-raid horn.

Now here is a little insider secret:

Everyone who embarks upon selling their own home or property, or hires an agent to help, actually has a pretty good idea of what their home is worth.

When working as a traditional agent I would almost always ask of a prospective seller, “What do you think it will sell for?”  Now, if I got the reply, “I have no idea?” My finely tuned ‘bullshitometer’ would wail like an air-raid horn.

Anyone who is even thinking about selling their home or property has a fair idea, usually within a 5% +/- range, of what ‘vicinity’ their property is likely to sell for.

However – even though their subconscious mind knows that level – they are generally sabotaged by their ‘busy, noisy’ mind and premiums of anywhere between 10-20% above real ‘value’ can quickly manifest and hijack the sale process.

The deafening silence of the market is usually an excellent indicator of where your true value sits.

However, its understandable potential sellers are looking for some sort of confirmation of their own expectations and, sadly, agents who feed unrealistic expectations make the job doubly hard for themselves and their clients (sellers).

That doesn’t mean that you, as a seller, should not ‘test the water’ reagrding price, but the deafening silence of the market is usually an excellent indicator of where your true value lays.

Here are three simple steps to getting pretty good idea of what your home or property should sell for:

  1. Find 3 -5 recent sales within a 1-5km radius of your property, that are of a similar nature/configuration, and have sold in the last 6 months. This your evidence.
  2. Check out similar properties to yours that are currently on the market and how much they are asking. This your competition.
  3. Hire a Certified Practicing Valuer to prepare a pre-sale report which indicates who the competition is and the hard evidence you need. No, they are not all conservative and low-ballers – they have to be as accurate as possible to maintain their reputation and career.

Pricing your property for sale is not rocket science, but ‘overshooting the runway’ generally leads to slower buyer activity, longer time on market and eventual frustration.

A little bit of objective research and old fashioned realism can go a long way to success and satisfaction when you sell your own home.

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It Pays to be a Qualification Ninja when you Sell Your Own Home.

Qualification. Ooooh. That sounds hard? It’s not really – a teaspoon of cement and razor-like focus is all that is needed.

If you want to sell your own property quickly, and for the best price, I can teach anyone how to qualify like a ninja, and boy its fun.

When it comes to private house sales, owners (sellers) can be a little reluctant, or even a bit lazy, when it comes to this vital component of the sale process.

Hey, I know, and have experienced first-hand, that many agents don’t bother to learn or demonstrate basic qualification skills and then have to make that dreaded call to a seller,  “Uuuum, the buyer has pulled out…”

To put it as simply as possible, qualification is purely you, having a conversation with a potential buyer, where you ask a few unobtrusive and subtle questions to uncover whether they CAN actually buy your home or property.

But why is qualification so important?

It prevents you getting your hopes up, only to be let down because a prospective buyer didn’t share that there were potential barriers for them to close out the deal.

And in today’s property environment you can’t ignore its importance.

Albeit a temporary situation, lending institutions have made borrowing criteria more stringent for would be borrowers: first home buyers, upsizers and the most affected group – investors. Why?

The Royal Commission into banking has shone a spotlight on some loose lending practices by banks and this has sent CEO’s and CFO’s scurrying back to their HQ’s to tell their credit departments to scrutinise all loan applications with a bigger scrute until the smoke clears.

Until the smoke clears!

Please note the above.  Do you really think the banks will become the Financial Industry equivalent of Little Red Riding Hood? Pfft.

So, this temporary tightening of the availability of money to would-be home purchasers makes it all the more critical for private home sellers to ask the right questions to ensure an interested buyer is actually capable of seeing a deal through to finality.

Have they got any bloody money?

And unless buyers have the following capabilities – they are nothing more than tyre kickers and ice cream lickers:

Have they got M . A . N. ?

  • NEED

And we know the BIGGIE is MONEY!

Qualifying by using the MAN process is the most subtly powerful method I know to find out if a buyer is really a buyer.

I share this with all my clients who have access to my exclusive Agent in a Box ‘Tool Box’ and it has paid off in spades for many of them.

The key to being a qualification ninja is simply to ask the right questions.

By not doing so, the risk of heart ache down the track becomes very real and may have you contemplating Hara Kiri (or hopefully just an extra wine to numb any pain).

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Can You Sell Your Own Home Using The Art of The Headline?

If you are reading this, my headline and accompanying image did their job…

After writing and editing, at an educated guess, over 3,000 property ads (and many for other types of business marketing), I can say that the art of the headline is generally ignored, as is the impact it can have on its intended reader.

For those of you looking to sell your own property – and Agents – here is a piece of advertising advice that can make all the difference to your marketing;

“Unless your headline sells your product, you have wasted 90% of your money.”

This comes from one of the most successful and insightful Advertising minds of the 20th Century, David Ogilvy, who’s career and philosophies can be read in his book – “Ogilvy on Advertising”.

Ogilvy’s, and the man he looked up to, Claude Hopkin’s, research, campaigns and successes for some of the biggest names in business, are still the primary drivers for what works in advertising today.

“Those headlines which work best are those which promise the reader a benefit.”

It is this statement alone that has been the cornerstone of creation of the vast majority of the headlines, and copy, I have written.

You need to make it your cornerstone as well.

For me every great piece of copy – and by great, I mean it invokes the right emotion in the right reader, so that reader (potential buyer/client) takes more than a passing interest in what is being said and sold – to the point of taking an action.

In today’s “I want it all and I want it now” environment, most buyers look at just a few things on any property advertisement, The Big Rocks; and they are;

  • Location
  • Main Picture
  • # of Beds, Baths, Cars
  • Price guide
  • Headline

Let’s face it, so many of us are time poor (or so we think) or maybe we’re just getting lazier, so the main copy (description) in a property ad might not even get read – especially if the BIG ROCKS don’t add up or the headline is weak.

And when I say weak, it doesn’t offer a hook (benefit) that makes the buyer/client want to read on.

In my experience owners selling a house and some agents place too much emphasis on crafting copy that is as long as War and Peace (an epic Russian novel), describing and listing everything, I mean EVERYTHING, the property has to offer – yawn!

And that’s what buyers do – start nodding off by the time they reach the third paragraph describing the strategically placed birdbath in the backyard.

To prevent this, they almost need to have an idea of what the main benefit is of buying this property as opposed to another.

Here, I have to digress for a moment.

To understand the difference between a benefit and a feature when promoting anything is critical and I’ll cover this in more detail in another post, but in brief:

A Feature is something the product/property has; e.g. Double Garage, Ensuite, Outdoor area

A Benefit is what the product/property will do for you, how it will make your life easier/better, how it will make you feel.

People like to think they buy with logic, but almost all buy with their emotions.

My experience tells me that features become important when the benefits are clear to the buyer and they invoke an emotion.

Here is an example of two headlines – each promoting the same property.

  1. Amazing Value – Five Minute Walk to Cafes and Transport
  2. Spacious Three Bed Home in Great Location

Which one expresses a clear benefit (or two)?

If you said ‘1’, you get a gold star!

Two clear benefits: This home could be a bargain, and who doesn’t love a bargain? And a clearly stated benefit of how close you are to important amenities.

Sometimes its not JUST about the property, its what is in store for the buyer when they buy it.

Always take a little more time crafting your headline with a buyer targeted benefit, then your description will be much easier to write with the buyers’ emotions and needs in mind.


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DIY Conveyancing: What can go wrong?

The actual process to sell your own home, from listing to agreeing on a deal, is not necessarily dictated by a library full of legal requirements and obligations.

To sell your own property involves; preparation, promotion, realistic pricing, talking to buyers, showing buyers (inspections) and some negotiation to seal the deal. As long as you act fairly in all your dealings with any potential buyer, during the actual sale process, and your home is offered to the market in good condition (and in good faith), there are few definitive legal requirements you need to adhere to.

Each State and Territory in Australia differs  when it comes to the legal obligations of home sellers before, during and after the actual marketing and sale process, but they are easily navigated and dealt with. For more detailed information about these obligations, check out our guide to property legislation in Australian States and Territories.

The question I am asked the most by potential sellers who wish to sell their own home or property is, “What about the legals?” or “Who does the contract when I get a deal?”

The answer is very simple. Just before or at the time you list your home for sale, talk to a local settlement agent, solicitor or conveyancer and put them on standby to put together a contract when you strike a deal with a buyer.

Be aware that in some States, particularly NSW and Vic, a contract needs to be in place before you go to market. Regardless, once you have shaken hands with a buyer and a deal done; contact your legal representative, give them the details of your buyer and the price/terms etc and they will put it all together and then execute the contract.

Some of you may be thinking, “Well I saved a bundle selling my own home, maybe I could save a few more bucks by doing my own legals.”

Yes, there are DIY Conveyancing kits which can be purchased online, or you may know someone who purports to have some legal experience to assist, but the carriage of a contract and the adherence to the terms and conditions, through to settlement, by the buyer and seller is not something I would recommend be taken on by a legal novice, or yourself for that matter.

This is also the view of the state government bodies responsible for real estate transactions (click relevant state for advice: NSWVicQLDWASATasACT & NT) who all advise the use of a conveyancer, lawyer or settlement agent. Although, Consumer Affairs Victoria do offer a DIY conveyancing kit available in their bookstore.

Sure, marketing, engaging buyers and selling your home is a serious, yet very doable undertaking, but the legal ramifications of that process are less onerous compared to transacting real property; contractual obligations, the transfer of titles, discharge of mortgages, searches and everything else that has to be ticked off in a legal sense after you have shaken hands with the lucky buyer.

If you asked me whether or not you should handle your own legal processes, I would say; unless you have a solid background in Property Conveyancing – DON’T!

Even when it came time to sell my own home I employed the services of a reputable conveyancer to look after the contracts.

As a traditional Agent of almost 16 years, I cringe if I hear one of my sellers/clients say that they will be handling their own legals and the carriage of the contract.

Although not the majority, each time, as the completion of the contract was nigh (the settlement) you can back it in that something had been overlooked and the deal may be delayed with the potential for penalties and time sensitive delays.

It got real messy and stressful there for a while.

I remember one afternoon, a property was due to settle at say, 3pm, and five minutes before settlement, the ‘self acting’ sellers came bursting through the door of my office saying, “We’re not sure how much they are supposed to give us and what we have to pay out?” After a few minutes of calm mathematics, they regained their composure and trudged off to complete the Big Deal…it got real messy and stressful for a while.

Property Law is written and enacted for a reason, to protect the interests of both sides of the deal – sellers and buyers.

Compared to an Agent’s commission on the sale of a property, legal fees on the final transaction of the average Australian residential property are minor, and can range between $500 – $2,000 dependent upon the complexity and conditions of the contract.

That is a fairly small price to pay to ensure the sale (or purchase) of your asset worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, or even millions, completes to your satisfaction and all parties leave the table, and move on or in, with a smile on their face.

Always seek the services of an expert in the field.

The risks of DIY conveyencing are real and can prove costly.


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To Price or Not to Price to Sell Your Own Home – Let’s Go Fishing.

Honestly, I could write a book on this subject alone.

But, in today’s “Give it to me now – and quick” environment I’ll do my best to cut to the chase.

The schools of thought around pricing a property for sale are as varied as they are numerous.

So, I’ll offer you a measured perspective from my 16 years of front-line property marketing and sales experience.

Generally, sellers’ (and their agent’s) perceptions about what price strategy to employ to attract buyers depends on the type of market that prevails at the time of offering a property for sale.

In simple terms there are three types of market:

  • Hot (Sellers hold the aces)
  • Even (Sellers and Buyers both hold good hands)
  • Cool/Soft (Buyers have the trump card)

The market has cooled, but is not cold or overly soft.

When the market hots up (buyers are plentiful and willing to compete), as it has been 2014-early 2018, many sellers, aided and abetted by agents who only know this type of market, go with a ‘no price’ campaign or auction – especially in the bigger Sydney and Melbourne markets.

Buyers, whose confidence is high, are willing to accept this type of pricing strategy and will research a little deeper to determine value and even be willing to go above their findings and sentiments on price to secure a property.

Heading to the other end of the scale – a Cool/Soft market (buyers are less in numbers and less confident) – some sellers/agents will hold onto the ‘no price’ type of campaign strategy, but the buyers who are still in the market are seeking bargains and immediately want to see the price expectation of the seller with a clear price or at least a price range.

In other words, buyer want something to aim at!

The cooler market sees sellers competing with other sellers (more stock to choose from), and the hotter market sees buyers competing with other buyers (less stock).

What about an even market?

I left this until last, as this is what we are operating in, in a general sense, today (Mid 2018).

The market has cooled, but is not cold or overly soft.

Buyers are still sniffing about, however, they have drawn a line in the sand and won’t chase prices or compete blindly against other buyers and risk paying ‘overs’ for the property they are keen on.

Pricing a property is no different to fishing.

Sellers are slowly realising that the premium price they expected may not be there right now, but a fair price is very achievable.

Do private house sales, or those employing a traditional agent, employ a covert pricing strategy (no price, POA…) or give buyers an indication of their expectations with a transparent strategy (list price, range…)?

Here’s a little bit of property psychology 101.

Pricing a property is no different to fishing.

You stick a healthy (but dead) prawn (bait) on the end of the line and drop it in, optimistically hoping that the biggest fattest fish in the water will quickly latch on, swallow the prawn and your hook – then you reel him in to your great delight.

Your pricing strategy is the bait and the hook.

At the moment I am seeing quite a few sellers dropping the hook in with nothing on it.

The fish in the water are the market – the people you want to attract to buy your property or home.

  • Do you remove the bait and just drop the hook in hoping the less savvy fish bite it anyway?
  • Do you put the prawn on and wait it out until time rolls on and you realise the fish keep swimming past it?
  • Do you put something more appetising and juicy on the hook to really attract the fish and get some serious bites?

At the moment I am seeing quite a few sellers dropping the hook in with nothing on it.

They get a few nibbles, but the fish (buyers) keep asking, “Where’s the bait?”  They are a little interested but not enough to take a big bite.

When there are less fish, and they are more fussy, I strongly advise today’s fishermen/women (sellers) to get fat and juicy early.

Get some delicious bait on that hook and be prepared to change it if no-one is biting.

Buyers’ sentiment can change quickly.

You must adapt to those changes and be prepared to adjust your expectations and strategy to ensure you snare the biggest fish.

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It’s All Location, Location, Location For Private House Sales – Is It?

IN the language of Real Estate, we hear it all the time – buying is all about location, location, location.

It is true, but location does not necessarily make up for 100% of any buying decision.

If you look at the habits of property buyers, the first thing they key into any on-line platform when searching for their next property is, you guessed it, the location (suburb or town) that best suits their need for proximity to employment, schooling, medical facilities, access to public transport (particularly rail), required uses for the land, peace and quiet…the list of locational requirements is as long as it is wide.

Then they key in the type of property (house, acreage, apartment, land), number of bedrooms, bathrooms, car spaces – then maybe the size of land and other filters – depending on their very specific requirements.

And then the all important PRICE range.

However, it is the BIG ROCKS they take in first – Location, Price, Type of Property, Beds-Bath-Cars.

This is how the vast majority of buyers determine their VALUE ESTIMATE before they even pick up a phone, send an email or attend an open home.

This four to seven second determination is a subject unto itself when it comes down to REALLY understanding how buyers think and act.

That is an another subject in itself for discussion at a later date.

Let’s stick to location.

IN a recent study of 1,000 prospective home buyers;

54% were open to broadening their search criteria to take in suburbs outside their locational wish list to find the perfect home

26% were determined not to budge and would only consider finding their dream home in their dream suburb.

From my experience it confirms what I have seen for the last 16 years.

Whether you are trying to sell your own home or using an agent, your competition (other similar homes for sale) is not confined to your immediate suburb or town.  A solid proportion of buyers will spread their search in order to find the best value and best fit.

That figure of 54% of buyers who are willing to compromise and look further afield sounds about right, and in my experience could even be a little higher.

I have dealt with buyers who search a particular area, see every home or property within their price range – then buy 20km away in another suburb.

The one-in-four buyers who won’t compromise on location are usually unyielding because of a certain school zone, proximity to loved ones, workplace or status (sometimes called ‘postcode prejudice’).

Whilst location remains THE key factor in any buying decision, be aware that buyers WILL compromise to obtain the best value and the property that meets their particular set of needs.


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