With so many how-to articles instantly available online, home sellers often ask me “Why should we hire a real estate agent?”
To some, it just doesn’t seem worth it.
So, I’m sure you have caught yourself thinking “why can’t I just sell my property myself?
Well some sellers do OK, however many don’t.
So if you’ve ever caught yourself wondering the same thing and you’re yet to be convinced that real estate agents are worth their commission, please read on because this could save you over $6000.
The Pittfalls Of Selling Your House Yourself
The advertising is a problem.
“All I need to do is whack it on Domain and Real Estate.com.au”.
Well you’re in for a shock!
31.4% of buyers don’t go past the second search page on property websites (almost the same stats for Google searches) but what if your property listing starts on page 3? “Why does my property start at page3?” I hear you asking? It is the old up-sell approach that newspaper companies have used since 18 dic-a-ty 6.
Have you ever put a personal ad in the newspaper? Do you remember them trying to up-sell you by bolding or creating borders around your ad?
Well newspaper companies have bought them out and are up to the old trick-a-rooney again.
Now just to guarantee your property appears on the first page you have to pay extra.
Domain is the second largest real estate website in Australia.
They will charge $550 for only 28 days and that is without pictures. Not to mention what RealEstate.com.au charge you and up-sell you to be on the first page.
You can try local newspapers.
It is cheaper but fewer people are reading local newspapers these days.
Another option is to use social media to let your friends, family, workmates and neighbours etc know.
See if any of their friends and families etc are looking to buy property in your location.
You can also try and print a few thousand flyers promoting your property with your personal details on it and put them in your entire area’s mailboxes.
A good agent will be doing all of this for you and will already have a social media following.
The Time Trap
With the economy the way it is, now likely both of the parents in a house hold are employed, but if you are lucky enough to not be working, are you realistically going to be able to take on all the stress?
Are you going to be able to spend your time diligently on the property in-between the kids and having a life?
Do you have a life now? You get my drift?
Let’s not forget, what if you are trying to sell quickly because you have already put a deposit on your new home?
Do you have the confidence that you can sell your biggest asset quickly and get the highest possible price without compromise?
Agents Know The Legislation
Assuming that you choose to sell your property without the aid of an agent, you will need to do a lot of research before taking it on yourself.
The main thing you have to know is that a Contract of Sale needs to be prepared in advance before a property can be promoted for sale.
You will need to know the ins and outs of Property, Stock and Business Agents Regulation 2003 (NSW).
“Why?” you ask?
Well you can actually be sued for simple little mistakes. E.g. you cannot, at any time, use or disclose any confidential information obtained while selling.
This can include other peoples offers, so in turn you cannot play other buyers offers off each other.
You must have comprehension and be familiar with the Act and the regulations under the Act and the other significant laws, such as tenancy laws, fair trading, the Trade Practices Act, anti-discrimination laws, The Privacy Act and disclose laws.
Ignorance is not a defense in the eyes of the law.
Real Estate Sales Experience
I’d be cautious with doing your own negotiations. I know if I was a buyer dealing with a private seller, I would expect at least 10% off the market value right off the bat.
Somebody who’s gone outside the framework of things will look like a huge target for someone trying to score a cheap deal because of amateur marketing and negation.
This is what buyer agents do all day long (it’s what they get paid for).
Buyers want a sound, safe buying experience, not Joe Blow talking up his home while you wander through alone with the seller defending why his home is the best in the world. Buyers like to feel secure.
That’s why they are buying a home in the first place.
In a seller’s market, where buyers are crawling over themselves to outbid each other, this may be okay, but in a buyer’s market, you can’t afford to frighten away the people trying to work within the framework.
Think about this…
If online and print media advertising costs around $8000 (for six months waiting for a good buyer) + $2000 to $3000 for preparation of contracts of sale, conveyancing and settlement + whatever the cost you put on your own time, the real estate agent’s commission is starting to look pretty good.
Also don’t forget, if you don’t sell your property, real estate agents don’t cost you a thing. They are free!