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Privately selling

Discussion in 'Real Estate' started by Jacque, 14th Sep, 2007.

  1. Jacque

    Jacque Team InvestEd

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    For those interested, I've started the process of selling my own PPOR recently (last week) and have decided to keep a diary of sorts, to chart my progress and hopefully learn from the experience :)

    Part of doing it myself comes from being a control freak :D but also as a type of experiment to see if I can come up with the goods and achieve the result that I'm seeking.

    First week I've only listed on www.domain.com.au (for those who have nothing better to do I'm sure you can find my private listing if you look hard enough!) and dropped about 100 local flyers- nothing too exciting. However, I have had three inspections already with one party expressing interest in a second inspection.
    Next week the signs go up and I approach the local rags for advertising costs. I've also taken the advice of an earlier member here and got a completely different ph no. (mobile) so that I can simply dispose of the sim card when the sale is complete. With the average house in my area (Hills District) taking some 52 days to sell, I anticipate a result during this period.

    I have decided, however, that after 4-6 weeks, I will consider a conjunction agreement with a local REA (whom I trust and know to be a great salesperson) as time may well become a factor- after all, most of my week is spent searching for homes for others!

    Wish me luck :)
     
  2. Cherry Pro

    Cherry Pro Active Member

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    Good luck, Jacque. You seem to have a great plan in place and am sure
    all will go well.

    Look forward to hearing how it's all panning out.

    Cheers.
     
  3. Aimjoy

    Aimjoy Member

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    Good luck Jacque,

    You know the industry and have comparable sales data available being a BA but I would not recommend it for Mr & Mrs Average Joe.

    Let us know how you go.

    Cheers,
    Aimjoy:D
     
  4. Jacque

    Jacque Team InvestEd

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    Thanks for your encouragement :)

    Coming up to 4 weeks on and no serious offers yet- but I remain hopeful!
    8 inspections with 2 coming back for 2nd look.
    Unfortunately, more than half of these buyers don't yet have finance organised or need to sell their own home first :(

    Interesting being the seller for a change- I want emotion and yet, funnily enough :) buyers are very coy in expressing their honest opinions!!

    Got the signage up last weekend and am putting a local paper ad in next week's RE section. Will keep you all posted.
     
  5. Boatboy

    Boatboy Well-Known Member

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    Hi Jacque

    Just a quick question as I have one coming up for sale in a month or 2

    Geting an add on Domain and re.com, I was under the impression I had to be an agent (which I see you are)

    Is this correct , or is there some other way around it

    Dave
     
  6. Jacque

    Jacque Team InvestEd

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    Hi Dave

    You do need to be an agent to advertise on realestate.com (or have a friendly REA who may let you use their account but put your contact details as a mobile no.) but domain is open to private listings- I'm selling here in NSW and have been pleasantly surprised at the result of enquiries from this alone. Approx 80% of buyers use the net to buy, with most NSW buyers preferring domain (from what I've been told by Domain.com.au :)). At just under $300 per mth to list it's the easiest and cheapest option for reaching the largest audience.

    Easy to set up- just get cracking on your description and pics and set up the ad step by step. In contrast, to give you an idea of print ads, my local paper is charging me $350 for a 1/4 page ad- and that's with a discount!

    Best of luck privately selling- my belief is that, if you have the time and the tools, why not at least give it a go? It helps if you're a confident negotiator as well, but no one knows your own home or IP like you do as owner.

    Go for it and best of luck :)
     
  7. Boatboy

    Boatboy Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for that mate, I never new Joe Citizen could place an add on Domain.

    funnily enough, I just had a call from the Principle of the agency who looks after our rentals as he has sold the agency to one of the agents in his firm. but will still be staying on in sales.

    I had a yarn re: placing an add on re.com for me and he said that they are very open to that sort of thing ( for a fee of course) so will discuss this with them shortly.

    He agreed that if I get the add on, that the house will sell itself, so I will be interested to see what his magic number is to put an add on for me.

    Dave
     
  8. Jacque

    Jacque Team InvestEd

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    Well best of luck with it then, Dave :)
    Other thing to be aware of is that you will require a contract of sale to be drawn up prior to showing buyers through your home. Conveyancers charge far less than these for sales, due to less work involved.

    I got the contract drawn up, and my conveyancer scanned it as well so I could then email it to interested parties. Have several hard copies on hand, however, especially if you have a lot of interest (and if this place is in Brissy, I'm sure you will- it's still a hot market from what I hear!) - best place for bulk copying is OfficeWorks- 8c a sheet.

    If you can take good pics then save yourself the money for a photographer, but even better if you know someone who's willing to do it who's also related or a close friend :D

    I have a standard list I ask all enquiries (in order to qualify them) - last thing you need is a bunch of lookers or neighbours wasting everyone's time. Also wouldn't recommend OFI's as you really just encourage window shoppers.

    Best of luck with it all and hope you get a great result!
     
  9. Boatboy

    Boatboy Well-Known Member

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    Do I really need to do this? Purchased a house 2 years ago where we found an owner who was thinking of selling next door to an existing property we had.

    We drove 700klm the next day to stitch the deal up before agents got involved and i'm sure we picked up a standard contract from an REA on the way up.

    Can do

    Central QLD, possibly even sillier than Brisbane at the moment

    I've seen some of the competition on RE.com, easy to do better.

    Now that is a list I wouldnt mind getting if at all possible

    It's been a regular Sunday outing for the new overpriced house next door($585k, probably cost $420 build) , I think most are getting ideas of what (or maybe what not) to do in their own build's

    Mate, I'm sure I will. If I sold it for what the original "Nice earn" number was, it would be 20% under the bank's valuation that was done 2 weeks ago and 25% under current sales in the area.

    I would be doing the "Dance of Joy" with the original "Nice Earn" number.

    Dave
     
  10. crc_error

    crc_error The Rule of 72

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    Since when is a realestate agent good at valuing properties? Most are never clear on exactly what to expect..

    You can quite easily get a property valuation and get a idea from that on what your property is worth, along with some personal research on what is selling.
     
  11. MattR

    MattR Well-Known Member

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    Update please!
     
  12. Jacque

    Jacque Team InvestEd

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    An update for those of you following my story so far….
    My advice- if you don’t like sagas, then skip this post. I like detail, after all :)

    After placement of my ad on Domain on Sep 3rd I had approx 10 calls, 3 emails and 8 inspections as a result. The ad was quite detailed with a clear price guide as well as address and some 11 photos, which I’m sure saved much time for both myself and interested buyers.

    As well as distributing approx 200 very basic half-page flyers around the neighbourhood, the only other forms of advertising during this time consisted of my other half discreetly “poaching” a couple of local buyers from an open home, two of which followed up the same day with an inspection. Oh- and, of course, a massive outlay of $66 for signage outside the property- an absolute MUST when privately selling.

    At the 3 and a half wk mark, the first offer was verbally made on the home, closely followed by two others in the ensuing days, both no’s 2 and 3 by email. The 3rd buyer, however, was best qualified, as they had pre-approval and were able to exchange sooner, after further negotiations resulted in an outstanding result :D To top it off, they are also lovely people whom I know will care for and love the home just as much as we have in our 8 yrs of occupation. The only real concession made was in terms of settlement dates, but we were happy to compromise given the circumstances- no one wants a property to become stale on the market, and then be forced to take a lower price to avoid the real hassle of more than one removal. As it stands, the settlement on our new PPOR is a few weeks prior to this one, so it works out well. I can move slowly and consider furniture placement very carefully!!

    Though the property exchanged we still decided to run a ¼ page ad in the local paper RE section, with 3 colour pics,description and ID no. to the ad online. After all, having been around the traps before with cooling off periods and buyers remorse situations (both personally and professionally) I was only too aware of the possibility of the sale falling over, and, as those of you who’ve invested in property know only too well, the deal is never done until it’s unconditional :rolleyes:

    The ad was a huge hit, and in the days following its appearance on Oct 2, I had some further 17 calls, though most of these actually saw the sign first. 3 of these included REA’s (much expected!) – and, true to form, the REA’s waited the appropriate time (a mth) before contacting me, as most private sellers start to experience some self-doubt by this period, if they haven’t had any serious bites. My plan was always to aim to sell within 6 wks and I would have considered a conjunction after this period, simply due to time constraints more than anything else. I had already handpicked a couple of agents locally whom I trusted to sell – it was just fortunate that I didn’t have to resort to this in the end.

    Total cost to sell my home, excluding conveyancer costs was as follows:

    $297 for a mths listing on Domain- the biggest web portal used by buyers in NSW and the only one to allow private sellers.
    Total no. of enquiries: 13

    $350 for a local paper ¼ page ad- not the cheapest option, but necessary, especially considering that the large majority of buyers are local
    Total no. of enquiries: 7

    $66 for signage – simple but effective red vinyl lettering on white corflute sheeting- one out the front of the house and a smaller pointer sign on the corner of our nearest cross street
    Total no. of enquiries: 10

    $23 for flyers- cheap and cheerful, done at home and photocopied at OfficeWorks
    Total no. of enquiries: 0

    $59 for a new phone

    Total $795

    Naturally, I haven’t included the cost of my own time but as all of the inspections were after hours or on Sundays it worked out extremely well. Between the two of us, Steve and I were able to accommodate most people’s schedules and show them over our home with a minimum of fuss.

    What I have learnt from this experience:

    • Give private selling a go- especially if time is on your side, and you don’t need to sell within a certain period. After all, what do you have to lose?
    • Ensure pics and ads are sleek, descriptive enough to only attract particular buyers and have a price guide and address (street as minimum)
    • Presentation is important- preparation beforehand worked in our favour as most buyers commented favourably.
    • ALWAYS put up a sign!
    • Have all paperwork in order, including contract, house plans, approvals etc
    • Carefully qualify buyers by phone first before arranging an inspection time
    • Ask for feedback from buyers by phone after inspections- they tend to be more honest :D
    • Maintaining a spotless home with 3 children, whilst also running a business with a fulltime working spouse is challenging!

    Many thanks to those of you for your encouragement, as well as my fantastic business partner, Theresa, for helping with access, my conveyancer, Fran (who is also on this forum) for her “Speedy Gonzales” style of exchange :D and, of course, my husband and family, for putting up with my pedantic behaviour recently. It has been a joint effort that has worked out very well indeed. Now, onto the next venture…… :D
     
  13. Billv

    Billv Getting there

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    Jacque
    Thank you for sharing your experience with us.
    I have a couple of questions.
    Did you had to discount the price?
    Did you have many offers?
    Having a neat and presentable home do you think you could have achieved a higher price if you used a REA?
    Cheers
    Bill
     
  14. MichaelWhyte

    MichaelWhyte Well-Known Member

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    Jacque,

    Awesome result, well done! You've given me confidence, as well as a step by step guide, to do it myself when I come to sell Nth Narrabeen. That may well be some years off yet though.

    Well done again,
    Michael.
     
  15. Leandro

    Leandro Well-Known Member

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    Hello Jacque,

    Firstly, congratulations on your result and secondly thanks for sharing.

    When i first saw this thread, i thought your actions were a pretty bad idea. However, while this has played out for you, i have been reading Neil Jenmans "Don't sign anything" and have had my eyes opened so to speak on the actions of real estate agents and the reasoning behind those actions. I have now changed my mind and can think it was a great idea on your part.

    However, i am still undecided if someone who wasn't as involved in the real estate arena as you would have had the same result ;-)
     
  16. Jacque

    Jacque Team InvestEd

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    Hi Bill :)

    After doing my own research, and knowing the recent sales in my immediate area, I had a "campaign" set out, which involved dropping the asking price after 6 wks of no results or offers. This wasn't the case, however, and so I was able to achieve a price above what I would have accepted.

    3 offers in all

    Had I used an REA, I would have advertised a different asking price to begin with and would have expected a minimum result + agents commission. As for a REA achieving more than what I did on my own, who knows? However, at the end of the day, I was ecstatic with the price.

    Leandro,

    As far as being involved in the RE industry, whilst I admit that it was useful having access to the necessary data, any owner can attempt to sell without an agent, providing they've done their DD, know their market, and are comfortable negotiating. I also believe that you need to emotionally detach yourself somewhat during inspections and negotiations, to avoid that mentality of unrealism that clouds some private sellers expectations.

    I'm not unrealistic to realise that part of this result may have been purely good luck, but I had a plan clearly in place (including timing) and was prepared to follow through. It still took work and organisation on my part, and yes presentation certainly played a part in a successful outcome. For months now, I've been slowly repairing and adding value in small ways to come up with a product that looked much better by the time my property hit the market.
     
  17. Boatboy

    Boatboy Well-Known Member

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    Well done Jacque, you've inspired to push on with the no agent plan

    I am just about ready to bang the sign in out the front myself as the overpriced property next door has plenty of lookers but no sales. (horribly overcapitalised and grand expectations)

    I have already steered a few lookers into mine and picked their brain as to what they think of the more expensive version they just viewed.

    I was thinking of being cheaky (as they are real tossers next door) and putting something like


    FOR SALE
    Affordable 4 bedroom +media room/bed 5
    $50,000 less than that house next door
    ----->>>>


    That'd give them something to bleat about

    Dave
     
  18. Billv

    Billv Getting there

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    Dave
    Great idea mate :)
    out of interest, why so big price difference between the 2 houses?
    Cheers
     
  19. Billv

    Billv Getting there

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    Jacque,
    Very interesting info thank you :)
    and congratulations on this great result.
    Cheers
    Bill
     
  20. Boatboy

    Boatboy Well-Known Member

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    Building what they wanted and not what the market want's

    They used a large national company where as I used a well respected local builder who has done a few for me before.

    Same size house within a few m2, and theirs is nicer with tiled outdoor area (compared to my exposed ag), they have European S/S appliances but no dishwasher, (I used Westinghouse s/s and supplied a S/S dishwasher), they have more expensive light's and vanities by a few hundred dollars (but they are horrrible) they used shiny porcelain tiles (I used shiny ceramic) and they have a portico.

    So all up if I did the same probably about an extra $8000.

    The mistake they made is they had the builder source everything including A/c, Turf, extra concreting, gardens and they told me it cost an extra $70,000 more than mine.

    The funny part is I know that the footing and slab, framing, brickwork, roofing, plumbing, electrical, plasterwork and fit off for theirs, was done by the same crew who did mine.

    Then I organized all the additionals and sweated a bit myself getting it done, so ended up $70k in front.

    They have Mercedes and new Pajero's to maintain and look down their nose at me as I'm sure that they think I am the hired help looking after the house.

    Should have seen the look of horror when I parked my Valiant out front on their open house day.


    I could sell for a bit more, but even at the discounted price it will be $50k more than I anticipated on a good day, so I am prepared to leave a bit of fat for the next guy, it'll stack up well on Valuation (already done) and I can get out fast and move onto the next project.

    Smiles all round.:)

    Dave