Gillies & Co Real Estate
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Sell Safe

GET THE HIGHEST PRICE FOR YOUR PROPERTY

Buyers are attracted by the appearance of your property and when they inspect it they will be influenced by its atmosphere. The right appearance outside followed by the right mood inside gives you the best chance to get the right price. When buyers enter your property they should feel at home.

Buying a home is emotional and the feeling of a home is more important than the price. If you agent has qualified the buyers they will be genuine buyers they will not be lookers, they will be genuine people looking for their dream home who can afford your asking price.

First impressions create permanent opinions so create a positive mood for all prospective purchasers.

Your house should be warm and appealing to the purchaser. Make the atmosphere natural and relaxed. Genuine appeal is what wins buyers. A soft radio in the background or TV but never too loud is a natural part of home life. Well made beds with warm quilt’s and lots of pillows make the property feel like home.

If you are planning to sell your property through a real estate agent the agent must have a Real Estate Agents Licence or be employed by a licensed estate agent to act as an agents representative. Only deal with a licensed real estate agent or an agent’s representative.

When choosing as agent to sell your property get several appraisals and don’t choose the one who gives you the highest estimated selling price choose an agent by asking them to justify their price by showing you some properties that have sold in the area for a similar price. Also take into account the agents overall marketing plan when making your decision.

Clarify with the agent the circumstances under which the commission must be paid, before signing the authority. Make sure that you carefully read and understand what is written in the authority and if you are unsure seek clarification with the agent. By law the agent is obliged to provide a copy of the authority to the seller at the time of signing. Retain this as proof of what was agreed with the agent.

If you want to make any changes after the authority has been signed, they must be made in wiring on all copies of the authority to sell and initialed by both the seller and the agent.

By law, Estate Agents must do the following:

  • Advise a client that all commission and other outgoings are negotiable
  • Disclose any bid made by the seller (if auction rules allow vendor bids) to advance the price of the property at auction
  • Communicate all offers to buy the property
  • State an estimated selling price in the authority to sell

By law, Estate Agents must NOT:

  • Use underquoting, over quoting or dummy bidding
  • Retain advertising or other rebates
  • Charge a client more for outgoings than was paid by the agent
  • Charge more than was authorized by the seller in writing.

The relationship a seller has with an estate agent is different to that of a buyer. Estate agents are obliged to act responsibly and ethically when dealing with both buyers and sellers. However the agents responsibly is to the seller, unless they are acting as a buyers advocate also known as a buyer’s agent.

Sellers who engage with an agent are employing the agent to sell their property. They are bound to act in the best interests of the seller and to act in good estate agency practices. The agent will charge a fee which will be in the form of commission, which can be a percentage or a flat fee. A seller can expect the agent to give an estimated selling price of the property and to communicate all offers to buy.

A seller can generally expect the agent to:

  • Advise on a method of sale
  • Advertise and market the property and provide a marketing plan
  • Organise and attend open house and other inspections as required
  • Attract prospective Buyers
  • Organise and Conduct an auction
  • Arrange the signing of the contract
  • Collect and hold the deposit

When talking to the agents important points to discuss with them are:

  • The knowledge of the market in the area
  • Comparable sales in the area
  • Their marketing plan for your property
  • Their estimated selling price of your property
  • Their commission or how they will charge
  • The cost of advertising and other outgoings

Do not sign anything unless you are prepared to engage that Agent.

Methods of Sale

Private Sale is where the seller and buyer agree on a sale price through negotiation. The contract can be conditional with the seller’s approval this means the buyer can make the sale subject to the availability of finance, a satisfactory report or other conditions. For residential properties the buyer has a cooling off period of three business days (with exceptions)

Auction is where the price is determined by competitive bidding and the property is sold to the highest bidder acceptable to the seller. The contract is unconditional, that is, the buyer cannot make it subject to finance, inspection and the like. There is no cooling off period.

The agent will recommend a method of sale based on the property type and location, the nature of the market and the seller’s personal preference.

Any offer to buy a property must be made through the agent. The agent will then communicate with the seller. Although an offer can be made verbally it is not legally binding until it is in writing and signed by both parties. This will generally be in the form of a contract note or a contract of sale signed by the buyer and if accepted, signed by the seller. The agent will also require the buyer pay a deposit and the deposit will be returned if the offer is not accepted. Buyers are entitled to make an inspection at any reasonable time one week before settlement. The contract of sale outlines that the seller has an obligation to hand over the property in the same condition as when it was sold.

The settlement date is the date on which the balance of the purchase price is paid to the seller in exchange for the title of the property. This is an official process conducted between legal and financial representatives of the buyer and seller. The settlement date is also the date on which the buyer can take possession of the property. After settlement has occurred you have sold your home and the buyer has purchased their dream home.