Your complete guide to selling your Australian property.
If you are in a position where you want to sell your Australian home or investment property, you have already been through the buying process. You might have been surprised by the complexity of the buying process. Selling your property may well surprise you in it's complexities too.
Some people seem to think selling simply means asking your rental management agent if they can sell it for you
It’s very important to have an understanding of all that the selling process requires. Selling is just as important as buying. Maybe more so.
This guide will assist you in understanding what is required, and we also offer our exclusive FREE report: "24 Costly Mistakes Overseas Owners Make When Selling Their Australian Properties"
STEP 1: FIND AN EXPERIENCED REAL ESTATE AGENT TO HELP
When you work with a real estate agent, you will benefit from their expertise and experience. They will have resources, marketing know-how, and a plethora of strategies to ensure maximum exposure. Finding the right agent is essential to a smooth, successful transaction. Interview three to five agents before deciding which one to use. Ask questions like:
- What does the listing agreement include?
- How long will the home be listed?
- How much is the agent’s commission on the sale?
- How much is the marketing?
- Do you pay the advertising?
- What evidence do you rely on when valuing our property?
- What strategy will you employ to get the highest price for us?
- Which agents will attend inspection with potential buyers?
- If you already have buyers, do we need to pay the advertising up front to reach those same buyers?
STEP 2: FIND OUT HOW MUCH YOUR PROPERTY IS WORTH
One of the biggest mistakes sellers make is asking too much for your property. It’s important to set a reasonable price. This is an area where having a good agent helps. They can provide you with a Comparative Market Analysis report. This report provides the price range of homes similar to yours and in the same region. Your agent can help ensure you set a fair price for your property so it will be more likely to sell. This is also important when it comes time to get an appraisal.
However, it is essential you also get an independent Certified Valuer to give you a valuation. This is one of the key tips in my sellers guide "24 Mistakes Overseas Buyers Make When Selling Their Australian Property."
Agents are not qualified valuers. They are professional negotiators with strong market knoweledge and carefully strutured selling systems.
STEP 3: PREPARE YOUR AUSTRALIAN HOME OR INVESTMENT PROPERTY FOR THE SELL
There is a huge amount that goes into preparing your property and making it presentable for buyers. Again, your real estate agent can help you in this area. They can walk through your house and provide suggestions on things that need to be replaced, repaired, or cleaned up. These are just suggestions; you don’t have to replace or repair every single thing suggested. Use your independent and trusted partner to help you when choosing projects that will help you sell your property. This doesn’t mean totally remodeling the kitchen and bathroom. It does include making the place presentable and addressing anything that could detract someone from seeing its true value. Some things you will want to address include:
- Apply fresh paint where needed
- Repair doors, windows, or things that stand out
- Repair cabinets or cabinet doors
- Replace the carpet if needed
- Consider upgrading the kitchen and bathroom
- Make sure all light fixtures and switches work properly
- My free report "24 Costly Mistakes Overseas Buyers Make" can help you with all this when dealing with your agent
STEP 4: STAGING YOUR HOME
Part of preparing any property to show is a process called staging. This includes decluttering and removing items. Remove personal items from the rooms like family photos and memorabilia. Each room needs to have an uncluttered appearance. Think of it like a model home. You want to allow a potential buyer to envision what the house will look like with their things in it. Here are a few tips for staging your home:
- Clean every part of the house. That includes the floors, the ceilings, and everything in between.
- Declutter all areas of the home. Cluttered areas make it seem like there is less space. It also detracts buyers from the home’s features.
- Remove personal items like photos and keepsakes.
- Get rid of pet odors.
- Define each room so potential buyers can quickly determine its purpose.
- Clean or replace carpet.
- Open curtains and blinds to take advantage of natural light.
- If the property is not lived in by yourself, then hire suitable high quality furniture
STEP 5: LIST YOUR PROPERTY FOR SALE
Your real estate agent will take photos of your property and compile all the pertinent information needed for a listing. You will be asked to fill out a seller disclosure. You will need to disclose any problems the property has had while you were the owner. Make sure to record any rodent damage, water damage or leaks, cracks in the flooring or any other problem, even if you repaired them. Explain how you corrected each problem. Your agent will handle all of the marketing and listing your house for sale online.
It is important to review the proposed marketing your agent intends to make sure you don't waste money.
STEP 6: SHOWING YOUR PROPERTY
When you work with an agent, they will schedule the showings. Try to be flexible if you are making appointments for a home showing. Buyers will be juggling their own schedules and may need to see the home after work at night or on weekends. It’s a good idea to provide a lockbox or keypad for entry so agents can accommodate potential buyer’s schedules.
If it is an investment property with tenants, you will need to be extra careful not to break any laws, schedule showing around the tenants schedule, and most important, decide whether to keep the tenants in the property or sell it vacant. For further tips on this get your copy of the "24 Mistakes Report."
STEP 7: RECEIVE OFFERS AND NEGOTIATE
When your home is well priced and presented nicely, you should start to receive offers. All offers are worth negotiating even if someone sends in a very low offer. You can always negotiate by providing a counteroffer. If your price is competitive and based on comparable sales, don’t be afraid to provide a full-price counteroffer. You always have the option of declining an offer.
STEP 8: WAIT OUT SETTLEMENT
Once you accept the offer, the buyer sends a deposit to your agent or solicitor and they deposit it into a trust fund as stated in your purchasing agreement or offer. This shows they have a genuine interest in purchasing your property. If they back out, you get to keep all or part of the deposit. A bank valuation and property inspection will be scheduled.
STEP 9: HANDLING THE INSPECTION AND VALUATION
The buyer usually hires a building and pest inspector who will check for damages or non-functional components. This allows the buyer to make a well-informed decision. If the inspector finds any problems, you may be asked to make repairs or replacements before the sale is finalised. It is also possible to renegotiate a price to allow for any repairs that may be needed. During this time, the buyer can back out without penalty if they deem there are too many things that need to be repaired or replaced. They may also back out of the purchase if there are serious problems. This is why it is important to make any repairs or replacements before showing the house.
The bank valuation is scheduled during this phase too. This is usually required by lenders to make sure they are loaning the proper amount to the buyer. Valuers protect both lenders and buyers and make sure they are getting a fair price. The valuer can influence the purchase. As the seller, you hope the valuer will value the home for at least your contract price. If they value it more, that’s good too. An valuation lower than the selling price can cost you the deal. If you get a low appraisal, discuss your options with your agent. You may need to reduce the sale price.
STEP 10: FINALISING THE SALE
Once all the paperwork has been completed and the lender grants the buyer the mortgage, the sale can be finalised. Your agent will give you the closing date. You will give keys and other items to the agent who will make sure the buyer gets them. Be sure to bring things like:
- Door keys
- Garage door openers
- Gate cards
- Mailbox keys
- Storage area keys
- Appliance warranties
- Depreciation schedule
Congratulations! You successfully sold your Australian property! The funds will be transferred or wired to your bank account. And you will be given a final "settlement statement " from your solicitor showing how and where all the fund have been paid.
If you live overseas, you will need to obtain a "tax clearance certificate" if you wish your money to be transferred overseas.
Congratulations, you have sold your property and received your money!
DON'T APPOINT AN AGENT, WITHOUT GETTING YOUR REPORT ON THE 24 MISTAKES MANY OVERSEAS OWNERS ARE MAKING!
Many sellers, especially investors, simply ring their rental management agent, and ask them "can you sell our property?" There is not a rental agent in the country who will turn down a guaranteed $20,000 or more commission! Whether or not they have the skills, and connections to sell it properly.
The Report includes:
The ‘method’ of selling overseas owners are being encouraged to use – that leaves real estate agents pocketing thousands in easy commissions.
Why over one quarter of all homes in Australia offered for sale remain UNSOLD more than 6 months later - and how to avoid YOUR property being one of these.
Who should you use to sell your property - the real estate agent who says they can sell your home for the highest price, the one with the lowest commission, the huge chain, or your property manager, or someone else? Virtually every overseas owner is choosing the wrong agent, and it is costing them tens of thousands in lost profits.
What you should do if a real estate agent says they have a data base of ready buyers – no advertising needed (this essential tip could save you a substantial sum)
This simple change in OPEN HOUSE days and times can boost the chances of getting a sale! This easy trick agents hate been proven to increase your chance of a quick sale by over three times!
The ONLY person you should trust to give you an accurate appraisal of what your property is worth (and NO it is NOT your property manager)
How to have an initial consultation and discussion with agents
- How to obtain a Neutral Opinion of value
- Presentation and Staging Advice
- Co-ordination and interviewing of agents
- Negotiation of agents fee - cheapest is (usually) not always the best
- Consultation with agents regarding marketing
- And much more! There are 24 Common and Costly mistakes in this report you must see BEFORE you engage any agent.
Let's Discuss Your Property!
I have a passion for helping people with all their Australian property needs, whether buying, selling, renting, financing, renovating or developing.
If you are thinking of SELLING and need advice as to price, timing, selecting agents and more, and need a trusted partner with strong negotiating skills who is dependable and responsive without any pressure or hidden agenda, give me a call!
"Michael, you are without doubt the best Australian property agent I have come across, and certainly the most honest agent I have ever dealt with"
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