Selling Your Home
The Raine & Horne Peninsula Difference
Find below useful information for the selling process from listing to settlement:
The Role of the Real Estate Agent
The key to successfully selling your home is choosing the right real estate agent, a professional with local market expertise and experience selling property. They can provide up-to-date information on pricing, financing, marketing and the housing market in general.
Throughout the sale an agent will act on your behalf, providing advice and guidance to help you evaluate buyer offers.
Selecting An Agent
When choosing an agent you should consider the reputation of the real estate agency, the sales agent's track record in real estate, recent sales and knowledge of the local area.
On a personal level you should consider how agents present themselves and the rapport you have with them. When selling your home you want someone you can communicate openly with and trust.
The advantage of a national and international real estate network over independent operators should not be overlooked. At Raine & Horne Umina Beach, clients have immediate access to specialist advice and promotion through our invaluable inter-office referral system.
For properties requiring exposure and successful marketing beyond the local market place, our network of offices throughout Australia and internationally are called into action.
Why Sell With Raine & Horne
Raine & Horne has been providing professional advice and service to satisfy the real estate needs of clients. The company enjoys a reputation and good will said to be unequalled in the industry.
Raine & Horne has been servicing the Peninsula for over 25 years with a strong team of 16 agents across 4 offices each bringing their own talents and personal databases built over many years.
The Role of the Real Estate Agent
When you decide to sell your home, one of the first decisions is whether you are going to sell through a real estate or privately. In Australia, about 95% of sales are made through real estate agents.
Raine & Horne is a powerful, widely respected brand associated with experience and quality service. When your property is listed for sale with Raine & Horne it will be noticed by more buyers because of the reach and power of the brand.
To achieve Raine & Horne's envied reputation as a leader in real estate, our agents receive the best quality training to ensure clients benefit from the latest marketing strategies and selling techniques.
Raine & Horne's new and powerful website (rh.com.au) features easy to use resources for buyers, sellers, renters and landlords. This innovative tool is consistently ranked as a top industry site in Australia, with tens of thousands of individual visitors recorded each day.
Clients benefit from the flow of referrals and information from Raine & Horne's extensive network of local, national and international offices. Properties can be marketed locally, regionally, nationally and internationally giving sellers a huge exposure that is direct, cost effective and well informed.
When selling property with Raine & Horne, clients can make use of the organisation's creative marketing ideas, 'top of the class' auction practice and ability to offer national and international exposure.
Putting Your Property Up For Sale
Method of Sale
There are several ways you can choose to sell your property. The most common are auction or private treaty. Both have advantages and disadvantages. Your agent will advise on the best method for you, based on the type and location of the property, nature of the market and preferred time frame. Below is a summary of both methods.
Auction is well recognised as an effective way of creating wide public interest, maximum publicity and reaching a large number of prospective purchasers. The following points summarise the benefits of selling your home by auction.
Properties marketed using the auction process often achieve prices well in excess of an owners' expectations.
There is no upper limit for bids and competitive bidding in an auction atmosphere often enables vendors to achieve a sale price higher than their reserve or what was thought to be a fair market price.
You Control The Process
Vendors choose where and when they want to sell the property, the terms and conditions of sale and the price they are willing to accept.
A short but comprehensive marketing campaign means less disruption to family life. Set inspection times for potential buyers are arranged at the outset to offer convenience for you. Due to the short campaign the number of Open for Inspections is also limited.
Auction campaigns are tailored to enable the property to achieve maximum exposure in the marketplace. Concentrated marketing of the property over a relatively short period attracts a higher level of interest and genuine buyers.
The Market Determines The Price
Auction is a great method for determining the right value of a property by eliminating the price and letting the market determine what it is really worth.
Auction Works To A Plan
The marketing strategy is carefully thought out, documented and specially tailored to the property and a firm date is set for the potential sale.
Specified Auction Date
Auction creates a sense of urgency. Prospective purchasers must complete their enquiries within a certain time period. There is a definite time limit by which he buying decision must be made.
A reserve price is set and the property cannot be sold below this price without owner approval. The reserve need not be set until just prior to auction. The owners' reserve is not disclosed.
Auction in conclusive and contracts are signed immediately.
When a buyer purchases a property at auction the contract is signed immediately and the buyer must pay a deposit. The contract cannot be rescinded by the purchaser, which safeguards against loss of contract and sale.
Selling by private treaty also offers several benefits:
- You set the price at which the property is to be offered.
- Offers from the purchasers can be considered at leisure.
- You can determine the pace of the sale process.
- The pace of negotiations can be controlled.
- Buyers may feel more comfortable that there is a cooling off period.
- Private treaty can sometimes be a less stressful experience.
- Marketing costs may be lower.
- Prospective purchasers not prepared to bid at auction prefer the private treaty sale process.
Regardless of the method of sale you select, you can rest assured that Raine & Horne Umina Beach, with our large team of 4 offices across the Peninsula and vast experience in the field, will deliver an excellent result.
Selling Your Property
When you engage a real estate agent to sell your property, you must sign a contract called an agency agreement. This is a legally binding contract authorising an agent to act on your behalf in relation to the sale of your property.
The agency agreement usually has a specified term and includes an estimate of the selling price, the service the agent will provide and commission you must pay the agent on the sale of your property. It may also include details of advertising and marketing costs.
There are several different agency agreements you may sign with your agent for the sale of your property.
The most common are:
1. Exclusive agency agreement
Exclusive agency agreements give the agent you choose exclusive rights to sell your property.
2. Open agency agreement
This lets you list your property with several agents. Many agents will only agree to exclusive listings. Open listings are not available in all states or Territories. You pay a commission to the agent who finds the buyer.
3. Auction agency agreement
This is effectively an exclusive agency agreement where the property is listed for auction.
The contract of sale
Before a residential property can be sold a contract of sale must be prepared. The contract of sale must include all documentation relating to the property as required by each state or territory’s law. Your agent will explain the required documentation for your property. The contract must also include any property inclusions and exclusions and the buyer’s cooling-off period.
Reaching prospective buyers
Marketing plays a vital role in achieving a successful sale. A carefully planned, well-executed marketing plan will bring the best result. Your agent will recommend a marketing campaign suitable for your property.
The program will set out a promotional period, various media to be used, and campaign costs. Each program is carefully prepared to suit each individual property and the agent is responsible for carrying out the campaign which will generally include:
- Professional Photography
- Newspaper Advertising
- Letterbox drops
- Property Brochures for prospective purchasers
- Mini Mags
- Open Homes
- Raine & Horne Database
- Window Display
Keep in mind that a superior promotion will create greater exposure and a better result. Before your home is officially put on the market there are several matters you must cover.
Preparing Your Home For Sale
First impressions are lasting so the presentation of your property is critical in creating strong initial interest from potential purchasers. A good guide to styling your home is to remove everything that is not absolutely essential. Your agent will be able to advise you of any changes that should be made to your home that could add value or increase the attractiveness of your property. Below are some simple suggestions that will improve the presentation of your property and help you achieve the highest possible price.
A bright and cheery home invites inspection. Keep your lawn trimmed and edged and flower beds cultivated. Windows should be sparkling. Remove leaves from paths and verandas.
The most important task you can perform is to clear away all clutter, clean surfaces and ensure all fixtures are operational. Remove any objects from the floor such as children’s toys which might cause accidents. Keep the front entrance and stairways clear.
Clean the walls, floors and skirting and marks on the carpet or around light switches. Put clutter away neatly in cupboards, clear table and countertops and don’t leave dishes in the sink. A thorough house cleaning will give your home that well-kept look.
Introducing fresh flowers throughout your home is a beautiful attractive way to enliven the appearance of a room.
Refresh your house and remove any bad or strong odours.
Storage and closet space
Storage is an important feature. Remove all the unnecessary articles that have accumulated.
Repair defects that can annoy buyers such as dripping taps, sticking doors, loose tiles, etc.
Neat orderly rooms look larger. Tidy up the bedroom for a spacious appearance. Keep all drawers and wardrobe doors closed and keep bedside tables free of bric-a-brac. It is essential that you have clean fresh sheets. Avoid busy patterns on duvet covers.
Check and double check your bathroom. Bright and clean bathrooms sell many houses. Ensure the bathroom is free of mildew, remove personal items and use a lightly scented room atomiser to make sure the bathroom smells fresh and inviting.
A minimal approach will always look cleaner and more importantly, spacious. Make sure the entire room is spotless and free from clutter. Particularly look at the top of the entertainment area and bookshelves. Make sure everything is free from dust and cords are neat and out of sight.
Clean the entire kitchen with special attention to food preparation areas; sink, stove, oven and grill. Make sure all open food products are away from sight, clean shelves thoroughly and arrange stored goods attractively.
Solid light tones can bring walls to life, elegantly finished with just a couple of styled prints or wall hangings.
Leave the house
Avoid having too many people present during inspections. The prospect will feel crowded and uncomfortable. Do not accompany the prospect or sales agent during inspections.
Remove animals from the house
Animals can get in the way and some people are allergic to or don’t like animals.
If you choose to play music make sure it is subtle. Turn off the TV and radio. Let the sales representative and the buyer talk free of distractions and disturbances.
What is your property worth?
One of the most important decisions when selling your property is setting the price. Your real estate agent will give a market opinion on inspection of your property which will provide a true estimate of price.
Be wary of any agent who tells you he or she can achieve a high price without substantiating it with facts. Always remember that agents interpret the market - they do not create it. Overpricing is the most common reason properties fail to sell.
The market opinion will be made based on evidence from:
(a) data sources, for example, property data
(b) recent advertisements
(c) recent sales negotiated by the office
(d) sales made by other agents; and/or
(e) any valuation from a registered valuer
It is important that you agree on the price set and that the agent believes it is realistic. If the price is unrealistically high, enquiry will be limited and the property will not sell.
Negotiating and accepting an offer
Good qualifying skills are vital when negotiating the sale of a property. Your agent has experience in this field and it is important they manage this part of the transaction. If you are approached by a buyer you should refer them to the agent.
Your agent will qualify the buyer and ensure they are in a position to buy immediately. Once the buyer is qualified your agent will get an offer, which you can choose to accept or reject.
Your agent can provide advice on whether the offer is fair and should be accepted but ultimately it is up to you.
Sale by auction
Setting a reserve price
Before the auction you must advise your agent in writing of a reserve price, which is the lowest amount you are willing to accept. If bidding does not reach your reserve the property will be passed in.
If your property is passed in the agent will negotiate with interested bidders to achieve a sale. If a sale is not achieved your agent will then proceed to seek buyers on a private treaty basis.
Sale at auction
If the property is sold at auction the successful bidder is required to sign the contract of sale and pay a deposit (usually 10%) immediately. A cooling-off period does not apply for properties sold at auction.
Once you have accepted an offer on your house, a contract must be signed by the buyer and the seller, with a copy of the signed contract provided to both parties.
When the contract is signed by the buyer and the seller, the buyer is required to pay a deposit - usually 10% of the purchase price – with the remainder paid at settlement.
Buyers of residential property may have a cooling-off period following the signing by both parties of the contract, during which they can withdraw from the sale. During the cooling-off period it is common for buyers to organise inspections of property e.g. pest or building inspections.
The cooling-off period can be waived, reduced or extended by negotiation under certain circumstances.
There is no cooling-off period for sellers and there is no cooling-off period for buyers who have purchased at auction.
The legal process for preparing and exchanging contracts and the length and conditions of the cooling-off period can differ between states and Territories.
Settlement usually takes place between 4–12 weeks after contracts are signed. At settlement the buyer officially becomes the owner of the property and all responsibility is passed from the vendor to the buyer. Until settlement the property is still the vendor’s responsibility so it is important you keep insurances and rates are paid.