Selling Guide

We understand the Otago market especially well, because we concentrate only on Otago. We hope this guide helps you through the process and keep you up to speed with what to expect at each point. 

Where on earth to start: Choosing a property consultant

You’re choosing a real estate property consultant, not a life partner. But, that’s not to say you shouldn’t apply many of the same criteria.
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For a start, it’s helpful if you like your property consultant. It’s also helpful if you find them easy to communicate with and they’re someone you are comfortable “representing” you. Many people select a property consultant based on a past, positive experience or a recommendation. And, like dating, that’s as good an approach as any.

If you don’t have a clue where to start, you can call into your local Edinburgh Realty office. (There are offices in Dunedin, Mosgiel and Cromwell). One of our team can talk to you, listen to what your needs are and learn about your property, before suggesting which property consultants would be a good match for you. 

It’s worth taking the time to make a good choice. The sale process will be that much more streamlined and worry-free for it. 

One size does not fit all: Sale options and pricing

Ok, so you’ve chosen a property consultant and you’re ready to get down to business. What now?
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A quick look through Saturday’s Otago Daily Times property pages gives you an idea of the many variables around “how” to sell property: the size of the advertisement, the pricing option used, open homes or by appointment... the list goes on.

Fear not. Your property consultant has done this before and will guide you through each decision.

Which sale option?

We all know that “one size fits all” rarely works out well. Whether it be a poor dress decision, the emergency Christmas present or, indeed, the sale of a property. What you want is the “best fit”.

There are basically five sale options: auction, tender, deadline sale, by negotiation or a set price. Deciding which sale option will be best for your property comes down to three key factors:    

1.  The property
2.  You
3.  Potential buyers

For instance, a particular property might lend itself to an auction, but the vendors prefer the process of set price. Sometimes it is the potential buyers – what they are most likely to find user-friendly – which swings the decision towards a particular option. The goal is to find the sale option that makes the sale process simple for both the seller and the buyers, while maximising the sale price.

Auctions are perfect when:
•  You’re highly motivated to sell.
•  Your property is highly desirable and will draw a large number of people to view it. 
•  There are likely to be multiple parties – who are unconditional, cash buyers – interested in the property.

An auction signals to buyers that “this house is on the market” and acts to increase competitiveness between potential buyers. Don’t be scared off by the rumoured expense of an auction. At Edinburgh Realty, there is generally no auctioneer’s fee.

Tenders invite buyers to submit their best price by a set timeline. It is unlikely prior offers will be accepted before the set time and date. Deadline sales are similar to tenders, but offers can be accepted at any time. A deadline sale is a good approach when a property has multiple uses and/or sub-division potential and therefore a large potential variation in price. Tenders and deadline sales are most commonly used in commercial property and, unlike an auction, they can be conditional.

By negotiation is often used in the first week or two of marketing a property. It acts as a teaser to buyers – drawing them out and establishing what they believe is its fair market value.

Set price is the most preferred option for sellers and is easy for buyers. It’s a simple and clean way to sell your property, with all cards laid on the table.

What price?

Determining the asking price does not need to be complicated. Many factors feed into the equation – recent nearby sales, the strengths and weaknesses of the property, sun, off-street parking, etc – but the figure generally pops out the other end pretty nicely. 

Be realistic and you’ll achieve your sale faster and with less heartache.

What’s the best time to sell?

People are always buying and selling houses, regardless of the seasons. Yes, there does seem to be a surge of activity around spring, but then there is something to be said for selling at a time of year when there are fewer properties on the market.

Fact: There are always buyers in the market.

Time to get baking: Going on the market

No, you don’t need to rush out and buy a bread maker. But you do need to think about how your house looks to potential buyers, as they pull up outside and come in the door.
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Most of us have five senses: sight, sound, smell, feel and taste. We’re not suggesting you prepare cheese platters for your open homes, but do have a good audit of how your house stacks up against the other four senses.

That doesn’t mean spending loads re-decorating or knocking out walls. But it does mean having a good spring clean, de-clutter and general tidy up. Get those odd jobs finished before the house goes on the market. 

Keeping up the enthusiasm

Your property could take longer to sell than you had mentally and emotionally budgeted on. Keep up the flower purchases and regular cleaning. Treat each open home like it’s your first. The reality is that, for your ultimate buyer, it most likely will be their first viewing. They will walk through that door one day and, bingo, they want the place. With that in mind, keep smiling. 

Don’t forget, your property consultant isn’t paid until your property is sold. That generally keeps them pretty focused.

Drum roll... envelope please: Responding to offers

Oh, the excitement! An offer. You had a feeling it was coming – and now here it is. Hold off opening the bubbly just a fraction longer. Sometimes, an offer comes in and the asking price and conditions are all straightforward and it’s a no brainer. Sign. Pop that cork. However, offers are often lower than asking price. The key is “how much lower?”.
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Advice: Put emotion to one side. Yes, an extra $10,000 would pay for a new boat or a fantastic weekend shopping in Melbourne. But, switch on the calculator and see how far away the offer really is from your asking price. If you’re asking $295,000 and someone offers you $287,000 – that’s still within 3 per cent of your asking price. 

Before responding, ask yourself – and your property consultant – these questions:
 How long has the property been on the market?
 How much interest has there been?
 Do you have another buyer looking likely to make an offer?
 How straightforward are the conditions that accompany the offer?
 What is overall buyer feedback to date?

When you’ve considered all of these factors, you’ll be in a good position to know the logical next move.

What now?

Many offers are subject to the sale of an existing property. This is not surprising, given the money tied up in a property and the fact few of us relish the thought of paying the mortgage on two places for too long.

Don’t be panicking if your conditional date comes and you’ve heard zilch. The contract runs on until either you or the buyer says otherwise – so don’t freak out. Your property consultant and/or lawyer will keep you up to speed.

Unfortunately, sometimes you accept an offer you’re very happy with, only to find the buyer was unable to meet all of their conditions. It happens. Fortunately, buyers are a determined lot and they put their offer in because they genuinely want your property. They may still sell their place down the track and re-appear as cash buyers. Equally, there are new buyers appearing in the market every weekend.

Going unconditional

Once the deposit is paid, you can pop open the bubbles.

On to greener pastures

Properties invariably look bigger and better, as you’re taking one last nostalgic look before pulling the door closed for the final time. Most of us can rhyme off the homes we’ve lived in or properties we’ve owned. They do make a lasting impression on us.

Hopefully your Edinburgh Realty property consultant also makes a lasting impression – and it’s a good one. Thank you for the opportunity and enjoy your new property.

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