TIPS ON SELLING
Welcome and thank you for visiting our client section of our internet site. This page is aimed at providing information that will assist you in the process of selling.
WHY YOUR CHOICE OF AGENT MATTERS
Not all real estate agents are the same. Standards vary widely according to the principles, practices and culture of the individual agency. Whether it’s your home or a real estate investment, all real estate represents the consolidation of much hard work and a major financial asset.
Protecting the value of your property
One industry estimate indicates up to a 10% variation in the selling price according to the expertise of the agent involved. On the sale of a $250,000 home this represents $25,000.
According to a psychological study, moving home was rated amongst the most highly stressful situations. Working with an agent whom you trust and feel is competent will do much to minimise this stress.
Reliability of Information
Reliable information is the key to being able to make the correct decision for your needs. You will be relying on your agent for honest feedback and accurate assessment at all stages during the selling process.
Make sure you feel comfortable with the agent you select. You should sense a good level of business acumen, communication and honesty in your dealings with the agent. If you don’t get this then try somewhere else.
HOW WE CAN HELP
We offer a risk free form of selling your property that will ensure you get the best result. There are no advertising costs and no fees charged unless you are happily sold.
At an initial, obligation free meeting we gain an understanding of your situation, needs and timing. We explain the process of “risk free” selling clearly and simply. This will let you examine for yourself why so many common industry practices damage the value of your property.
We also offer advice on any presentation or other issues that will help you maximise the value of your property.
Our sales team are recognised high sales achievers (click here) and all staff regularly attend training in both “ethics” and “client benefit based” real estate marketing. All advice given is based on placing the clients interests ahead of our short-term profit. This solution is best for our clients, and the long-term success of our business.
If you would like to get a more in depth view of our staff, agency and values please visit our “About Us” section.
SOME GOOD QUESTIONS
Some good questions to ask yourself when choosing an agent.
- Will this agency really care about my interests? Why?
- How deeply do they understand the whole real estate selling process? A good agent should be able to give you good (logical) answers to all your questions.
- How does the agent find buyers? This shouldn’t take a big advertising campaign.
- What do they know about negotiation, how did they learn it?
- What other training and professional improvement do they do?
- Have they stood the test of time with their clients? Are current written testimonials available? Is their agency growing or declining in size?
- Have they stood the test of time through all types of market conditions?
To gain a thorough “inside” view of the real estate industry from the CONSUMERS point of view I recommend the book “Real Estate Mistakes” by consumer advocate Neil Jenman (or visit their website www.jenman.com.au)
STEPS IN SELLING IN NSW
Before the property can be marketed
If you are selling residential property (in NSW) and it is less than 2.5ha in land area then you must obtain a complete “contract for sale” from your solicitor/conveyancer before the property is able to be offered for sale (or you or the agent may be liable to a fine for breach of this law). Any type of property other than residential use (under 2.5ha in land area) can be marketed prior to a “contract for sale” being prepared.
What is the “contract for sale”
The “contract for sale” is the contract that you expect the purchaser to sign. It is usually prepared by your solicitor/conveyancer and sets out the property details, any special conditions and a list of items that are included or excluded from the sale. It contains certain prescribed documents including a title search and a 149 certificate (or zoning certificate).
Appointing your real estate agent
Having decided on the agent of your choice, the agent will provide you with a “sales inspection report and selling agency agreement” which both you and the agent sign. This is a NSW requirement for an agent to act on your behalf and sets out the type of agency, fees and any charges. It is important to check that you understand the basis on which the agent is appointed, the period for which the agency agreement extends, the fees you have agreed to pay and if there are any additional charges.
When the Sale Starts
The average time from first deposit to final settlement should usually be about 6-8 weeks. In NSW there is no binding agreement until such time as you have an unconditional contract for sale “exchanged” and the purchaser has paid a 10% deposit. Until this time a purchaser may withdraw from a sale at any time.
Once a buyer has been located, the first step in the process is usually the payment of an initial deposit (as a gesture of good faith) and the preparation of “contracts for sale”. The agent issues your solicitor/conveyancer a “sales advice” that details the names of the purchaser, any special terms or conditions (negotiated by your agent on your behalf) and a list of items included in the sale. Your solicitor then forwards a copy of the contract to the purchaser’s solicitor for their signature. An identical contract is sent to you for your approval and signature.
If the property is residential property under 2.5ha, then in some cases the agent may be able to exchange your signed contract with the buyer immediately. The buyer then has five (working) days cooling-off period in which to perform the necessary legal checks, get building and other reports and make sure that their finance is arranged. They can decide not to proceed within the five days cooling-off period, and forfeit only .01% of the purchase price (i.e. on $200,000 the amount would be $200).
Exchange of contracts occurs when each party (or their legal representative) is given a contract signed by the other party and the balance of 10% deposit is paid. It is the point at which contracts become legally binding on both parties (except if the 5 day cooling off period is effective).
Sometimes because of time delays a proposed sale will never reach exchange of contracts (eg. a change in the buyers circumstances) so it is wise to ensure that your solicitor is aware of your desire to exchange at the earliest possible time and to minimise any time delays.
There are certain important issues that a purchaser will usually need to deal with prior to exchanging contracts.
Items their solicitor has raised (like confirming council compliance of various items).
If borrowing they will need written approval of the loan. Often a loan will be subject to a satisfactory valuation of your property.
Confirmation of the legal identity under which they intend to purchase (individual, joint or company) since these may have various taxation and GST implications.
Obtaining satisfactory Building and Pest Report (and perhaps a survey if there is any doubt about boundaries).
As a seller it is worth considering obtaining some of these reports in advance. The benefit is that both you and the agent are aware of all issues affecting the house at the commencement of marketing. This means any items affecting the property can be disclosed to a buyer from the beginning and are not likely to surface midway through the process as an unexpected issue.
This is when you receive payment and hand over ownership of the property. Be aware that sometimes for some technical reason the solicitors won’t be able to settle as expected. It is wise to check with you solicitor as settlement day approaches to ensure everything is on track.
Immediately prior to settlement it is normal that the purchaser will request a final inspection of the property to ensure that the property is in a reasonable state and nothing has been damaged since they first inspected it.
On settlement your solicitor/conveyancer will discharge any outstanding mortgages and obtain reimbursement for rates that you have pre-paid. The balance of purchase price (less the 10% deposit still held by the agent) is released to you. On receipt of an “authority to release the deposit” from the solicitor, the real estate agent is able to release to you the balance of the 10% deposit (less their agency fees).
On settlement arrange to disconnect power, cancel phone and papers and redirect your mail (contact details for utilities companies are shown below) and remember to get a refund on the advance payment of your home insurance premium. Keys should be handed over to the real estate agent ready to be passed onto the purchasers on settlement.
A nice tip that your buyers will really appreciate is to leave a note to let them know who the neighbours are, any special hints for your garden etc., don’t take the plugs from the sink and leave a little toilet paper and soap – when you’re moving into a new house it’s often needed but no-one remembers which box it’s in!” (this tip compliments of Mark Cochrane Real Estate, Mullumbimby).
Any other questions or problems please give us a call. We’re here to help.
The costs when selling residential real estate are:
- Legal costs (likely to range from $500 to $1,500 depending on the purchase price and complexity).
- Agents Fees – vary with agency and level of service provided.
18 COSTLY MISTAKES HOME SELLERS MAKE
If you would like to know the 18 common mistakes sellers make (and how to avoid them), please call into our office or telephone and we will post a free copy out to you.
CONTACTS: LOCAL COUNCIL, UTILITIES AND BUYER REPORTS
Properties we sell are located in the Bega Valley Shire and sometimes the Eurobodalla Shire; please find their contact details below:
BEGA VALLEY SHIRE COUNCIL
14 Young Street, Bermagui
Fax: 02 6493 4789
Phone 02 6493 4113
Zingel Place, Bega, NSW, 2550
Fax: 02 6499 2200
Phone 02 6499 2222
EUROBODALLA SHIRE COUNCIL
PO Box 99, Moruya, 2537
Fax: 02 4474 1234
Phone: 02 4474 1000
COMBINED BUILDING & PEST REPORTS
690 Candelo Road, Wolumla, NSW 2550
Fax: 02 6494 9458
Ph: 02 6494 9135
Michael Marshman and Associates
PO Box 323, Bega, NSW 2550
Ph 02 6492 5400
Fax 02 6492 3455
David Ing, DK Pest Control
Ph 02 4473 7201
219 Carp Street, Bega, NSW, 2550
Fax 02 64925615
Ph 02 64925611
CONNECTIONS & DISCONNECTIONS
1800 736 836
Caddy Searle & Jarman
10 Canning Street, Bega, NSW, 2550
Fax: 02 6492 2934
Ph: 02 6492 2933
114 Wagonga St, Narooma, NSW, 2546
Fax: 02 44761812
Ph: 02 44762985