The biggest mistakes vendors can make when selling their home


Selling potentially your most valuable asset can often be a complex process.

Notwithstanding the emotional stress and pressure the sale of a house can involve, there are legal issues to wade through, fees, settlement agents and legislation to navigate during the course of an average sale.

And whether you’re a seasoned property flipper or it’s your first time at the helm, there are pitfalls that can arise along the way.

However there are a number of simple and fairly straightforward ways to ensure you don’t end up making common and costly mistakes according to Abel McGrath Property Consultant, Janet Barron.

Choose the right agent for you
Ms Barron says choosing the most appropriate agent can be one of the most difficult hurdles when selling your home.

“It’s not always easy or straightforward and everyone has, sadly, heard tales of dissatisfaction in this respect,” Ms Barron says.

“What you should look for are trust and competency and that means selecting someone who is both transparent and respectful in their dealings and who has good market knowledge and effective communication and negotiation skills.”

Pricing is key
Pricing your home too high or too low can also be one of a seller’s biggest mistakes when heading to market. It’s just as important not to over-price as it is to under-price.

“Pitching your property at a level that is going to attract maximum buyer interest and that is realistic in terms of the prevailing market is crucial to a successful and timely sales campaign,” Ms Barron explains.

“Under-pricing puts vendors at risk of losing huge sums of money especially if your agent doesn’t have the requisite negotiating skills. Over-pricing can be a major deterrent to potential buyers and is equally as dangerous”.

Go in prepared
Lack of preparation heading into a marketing campaign is another common problem for buyers gearing up to sell.

“Although price is obviously key, preparation and presentation for a successful sale are really important factors. Over 90% of buyers utilise digital media when seeking a home to purchase”.

“The time taken and effort expended to make your property stand out amongst a multitude of competing properties on the market, therefore, cannot be underestimated.”

Don’t cut costs in a tightening market
Ms Barron says there is definitely a temptation for some buyers to scrimp on costs in a tightening market.

“It’s been a long time since Perth has seen a property market such as the one that exists now,” she says.

“The quality of your advertising and marketing campaign is critical in attracting maximal buyer enquiry although this need not necessarily be an expensive exercise.”
“A competent and caring agent can be invaluable in providing astute advice and guidance in this area.”

Don’t wait for the perfect time
Another common mistake vendors make is to wait around for perfect market conditions.

“None of us has a crystal ball in relation to the market. To put it simply, the very best time to sell your home is when it is right for your individual circumstances.”

Early offers can sometimes be the best
“On balance it’s widely accepted that early and first offers are often the best. The interest level in your home will never be higher than in those first few weeks of going to market.”

“Vendors should think very carefully before holding out for a higher offer in these circumstances.”

Janet Barron

Why investing in advertising and marketing is crucial in todays market


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The Perth market has softened considerably since its mining boom highs when it achieved record growth and was regularly outpacing markets across the country.

Complacency may have crept in on the part of some homeowners and agents alike who could virtually hammer in a sign and wait for the offers to come.

However the story today is a very different one.

With signs of a solid recovery still a while off, vendors and homebuyers have both had to alter their expectations to meet the current market.

In a tighter market, where higher prices are not as easily achieved, some vendors fall into the trap of saving on costs by pulling back on their spend on advertising and marketing.

However, Abel McGrath property consultant, Richard Clucas, it should be quite the opposite.

“Marketing and advertising should be seen as a personal investment into the sale of what is quite possibly is their largest asset,” Mr Clucas advises.

He says each campaign should be customized to suit the needs of the property and the selling party.

“The number of people who know about the home is directly proportionate to the number of people who have been through it,” he says.

“Unfortunately, secrets can’t be sold!”

Mr Clucas says it’s not necessarily all about the amount of money you spend, but more so about how it is spent in order to get the best result.

He says some of the key aspects to invest in are home styling – especially if a home is vacant – professional photos, a floor plan, prominent signboard and priority status on each of the major real estate websites.

“We know, as agents, that there are specific groups of people we need to target to get the best results.

“The key items listed may not reach out to each and every one of these groups but it is a bare minimum in terms of investment in advertising and marketing.”

Mr Clucas says that knowing the demographics of the area in which you are selling is key to justify your choice of particular marketing tools.

“The guidance and advice of the agent should be taken into account as they have the knowledge and experience

“However at the end of the day it is up to the seller as to how much they are willing to invest,” he says.

He says when looking at different methods of advertising, such as online versus newspaper, it boils down to the readership of the paper and its reach and also the demographic of the target audience you are trying to reach.

“Certainly online advertising is the primary browsing platform for many people these days,” he explains.

“But certainly other marketing methods play a pivotal role also in achieving a home’s maximum potential by attracting not just active buyers but passive buyers and other groups also.”

Richard Clucas