4 Compelling Reasons to Sell Your Property This Spring
Plus some tips to help prepare your home to sell
Signs it Could be one of the Best Seasons Ever for Sellers
The sun is shining, the flowers are blooming, the birds are nesting and the bees are buzzing, which can only mean one thing: Selling season.
In fact, statistics from CoreLogic RP Data show that in just the first week of spring in 2015, the volume of auctions in our capital cities was at its highest level since May. Furthermore, there were over 430 more auctions then at the same time 12 months ago.
Late winter and early spring are two of the most popular times of the year to sell your home, as buyers emerge from hibernation and compete for the influx of homes on the market.The increased supply means greater choice for buyers, while the surge in demand can result in better prices for vendors. Win win!
However, there are signs that this could be one of the best seasons ever for sellers. There are a number of factors all combining to entice investors - both international and domestic - towards bricks and mortar, consequently driving up prices.
Low Cash Rate
The current cash rate of 2 per cent has resulted in very favourable conditions for buyers (and therefore sellers). As the Reserve Bank of Australia's Glenn Stevens noted: "Low interest rates are acting to support borrowing and spending".
With home loan repayments easier to manage, the property market has been made more enticing for buyers, not to mention the omnipresent fact that the advantageous rates won't last forever!
Weak Aussie Dollar and Share Market
A low Australian dollar is beneficial to those who are selling property, as it makes it more affordable for overseas investors. According to a report from the Commonwealth Bank, since 2011 the dollar has fallen from its peak of A$1.10 to below A$0.75 at the time of writing.
This has also affected the share market, with Mr Stevens noting that it has been considerably more volatile of late (associated with movements in China). Not only does this make property more appealing to international investors, but the added competition between buyers will likely push up your price tag.
Are Prices Nearing Peak?
A report from Propell has found that while almost all our capital cities have increased in value over the 12 months to August 2015, Sydney and Melbourne have been surging faster than any other, growing 19.8 per cent and 12.3 per cent respectively.
This has resulted in not one, but two records broken. Sydney's yearly swell was the fastest of all time, while at 5.1 per cent, Melbourne took the crown for the speediest monthly incline.
However, the Propell research asserts that property prices are soon to stabilise, as banks begin to impose tighter lending conditions (particularly for investors). This highlights the benefits of selling your property sooner, rather than later.
Added Advantage of Selling in Early Spring
If you sell your home in the beginning of spring, amongst the (slightly) less competition, you will be in an enviable situation. Not only will you have beaten the rush, but you will have the rest of the season and summer to find your new home, during a period of strong supply.
All going well, you will have sold, purchased and moved into your new home all before the dust settles - not to mention, before the Christmas holidays. If you're thinking about selling your home or you've already got it on the market, here are a few tips for preparing your home for open inspections:
Though it may sound slightly over the top to begin packing your possessions before you've made a purchase, it can do a great job of removing the clutter from your home. This includes your various redundant exercise machines, your lava lamp, vintage electronics and other such knick-knacks.
Any items that make the property your home (family photos, birthday cards and home-made knitting for example) should be boxed and put in storage, as you want prospective buyers to feel inspired by your effective blank canvas. Decluttering your home not only make the space look tidier, but also larger.
Arranging the bulk of your things prior to the open home has the added benefit of reducing the stress of your move when it does come - which could be sooner than you think. According to CoreLogic RP Data, houses in select areas of Australia have been on the market for less than 16 days before being snapped up.
The little things
In most cases, you don't want to spend a fortune on renovations to spruce your home up for the open inspection, as it could end up costing you more than what you get back. Fortunately, there are a number of minor repairs and improvements you can make to freshen your home for buyers. Sustainability Victoria has a number of recommendations all under $500, including:
- Replacing the grout in all the tiled areas
- Updating old light fixtures and switch plates
- Replacing door knobs
- Painting the interior trim and the exterior front door
Style your home
According to a survey of the top LJ Hooker agents in Australia, styling your home to look its best is often well worth the time, money and effort. Almost 90 per cent of the surveyed agents stated that you will earn a higher sale price, while 70 per cent believe you will get a quicker sale.
If you think you're up to it, you can decorate and style your own property, but all the agents agreed that you should enlist the services of an expert with experience of what is the most persuasive for buyers.
Choose the right agent
A real estate agent will be able to manage your entire open home for you, as well as giving their unbiased suggestions for preparing your property for your open home. Agents come in all shapes and sizes, therefore it's important you put in your due diligence to ensure you pick the right one. NSW Fair Trading recommends:
- Ensuring they have a valid licence
- Finding out their fees
- Enquiring about their knowledge of the area
- Asking for a few references
- Determining whether they've sold homes like yours in the past
- Requesting a brief strategy of how they plan to market your property
It's crucial that you don't just entrust your home to the one who promises you the best price. Go with the agent you feel comfortable with and who's able to present you with a detailed market analysis.