By Craig Lowe
100 buyer inspections and 23 tenders. That's a phenomenal amount of enquiry and number of offers for just one property. But that is exactly what a home in Miramar recently achieved, with the help of some good marketing and, perhaps surprisingly, good market conditions. You might be thinking that this home was very special, and indeed it was an appealing property in a good price range, but anecdotal stories of huge open home turnouts and multiple offer scenarios are suddenly everywhere.
This is in stark contrast to the atrocious market conditions for sellers during 2008. The credit crunch, combined with double digit interest rates meant buyers had all but disappeared.
There are two glaringly obvious reasons for this sudden reversal of market conditions. Interest rates are very low, prices have dropped and consequently better home affordability is bringing buyers out of the woodwork. Also stock levels are so low that a supply and demand imbalance has occurred, forcing buyers into competition for the limited stock that is available.
Traditionally winter is the slowest time of year for Real Estate sales. Everyone thinks their home presents better in summer and they prefer to bunker down and wait until spring before selling. This is a perfectly understandable approach, and in some cases (if your home doesn't get any sun in winter for instance) may benefit the sale process.
However this winter, the normal lull in activity has been compounded by the perception that it is not a good time to sell. Stock levels are so much lower than normal that decent homes are very hard to find and as mentioned, buyers are forced to compete. For this reason, unless your home is in an absolute dire state of disrepair, you are far more likely to get a higher price by selling now than waiting until spring. Especially, if you are holding off for better weather or to complete minor renovations.
For example, last weekend I had an open home on run down but well located investment property in need of a lot of deferred maintenance. We had 40 people through the open home and even though we had marketed the property to investors about three quarters were owner occupiers looking to see if they could convert it back to a home because they couldn't find anything else to buy in the area.
While your home's presentation, aesthetic appeal, and sunshine are all important factors in creating demand and value, the single biggest factor in achieving a premium price is competition amongst buyers. Rather than entering a tug of war negotiation with one buyer, and meeting somewhere in the middle, you want two or more buyers forced to bid against each other to buy your home. Waiting till summer and tidying up the garden, finishing off small jobs etc, may make your home present better, but suddenly your home will be just one of many who have done the same thing.
I would guess the difference between selling now or selling in spring could easily be tens of thousands of dollars on the sale price of an average priced home. Things start to heat up in September and between now and then there is a huge opportunity for sellers. I am preparing to put a property I own on the market for exactly this reason.
If you would like to take advantage of a free, no obligation appraisal of your home then you can contact me any time on 021 764 647.