Do I Need a Real Estate Agent to Sell My Home?

You consult a doctor when you have health issues. You do the same when you’re experiencing plumbing problems. So, why wouldn’t you engage a real estate agent to sell your biggest asset, your home?

Real estate agents are trained to do many things for you. Here are some of the important matters they are specialised in:

Presentation. Help your property get noticed among all the other properties in the market.

Marketing. Design the right marketing campaign to get the highest possible sale price for your property.

Pricing. Calculate the estimated sale price.

Communication. Make sure you are provided feedback from prospective buyers.

Buyer Engagement. Encourage buyers to push through with the sale.

Negotiation. Take care of several buyers to get the best deal for you.

Strategy. Conceive an atmosphere that will generate the highest offers.

Even more than the things stated above, real estate agents help you maximise the sale price for your home, and are usually already working with prospective buyers.

Emotions can come into play if you sell your home without an agent. Buyers may not feel comfortable dealing with you as most will be polite and not provide accurate feedback. If, for example, a buyer makes negative comments about the kitchen, you may feel upset, but an agent, who is not emotionally attached to your property, can handle the process objectively by talking about options.

To you, a real estate agent’s commission may be high, but you can count on these professionals to get the highest possible return on your property, and the results will most likely be greater than what you could have accomplished if you tried to sell your home yourself.

Call me today to find out how much your property is worth in today’s marketplace.

Is the Property Market Cooling?


After spectacular price increases in 2021 across most of Australia, both buyers and sellers are wondering if and when can we expect to see the market start to cool off?

There are a number of key signs to look for that will indicate that the market is cooling?  Here’s what I would consider to be some signals:

  • Attendance at open homes decreasing
  • Days on market increasing
  • Median price growth slowing
  • Reduction in advertised asking price
  • Auction clearance rates declining (usually reported as a percentage)
  • Bidders at auctions lower
  • Pace of bidding at auctions slower

So what’s happening in our region?

We have noticed that demand for high quality property is still in strong demand in Newcastle and these properties are selling in a reasonable timeframe.  While it is expected that there will be a potential interest rate increase later in the year, this has not deterred the bulk of buyers who are still actively looking and interested to get into the market now.

In Newcastle, the overall number of buyers attending open home inspections has decreased and the fast pace of bidding at auctions have slowed compared to this time last year.  Price guides are becoming more realistic, with the exception of unreasonable or mislead sellers who are still expecting the market to increase and have marketed their homes for a stronger price guide.  These properties are languishing on the market and taking time to sell.

Worth noting is that, this time last year sale results were achieving 15% to 20% above the guide!  This is no longer the case for the majority of available listings.  The properties that are still achieving strong prices are the high quality property that have been well marketed and where all the renovations and work has already been done.


How to Avoid Mistakes in Open Plan Living

Open living spaces are very popular, but it can easily look cavernous and unwelcoming, or overcrowded and messy. The key is to get the proportions, layout and floor plan right.

Here are some expert tips and advice that you can use when executing your open plan living ideas.

Getting Your Open Plan Living Layout Right

Finding the balance between design and floor plans can be quite tricky. So, how do you avoid an open plan living space that is huge, or too cramped and cluttered?

To make sure the space doesn’t become too open and huge, create zones within the open area with the use of proportion-sized rugs. Don’t enclose the area and go against the design by avoiding furniture that is too high or that disrupts the line of sight across the room.

When choosing rugs and furniture for this purpose, start with a big rug to create a zoned area. Make sure there is sufficient seating that is arranged to promote engagement and conversation.

Linking the three areas: kitchen, living and dining

Creating a cohesive design across your kitchen, living and dining areas can be achieved by incorporating similar elements across all three areas.

Use a similar colour palette throughout, as well as the same texture. Choose furniture and accessories throughout that balance each other. Cohesion begins at the design process by choosing one flooring and one paint colour across the three areas.

Feature walls and similar elements don’t complement a cohesive open plan living space. Just keep it simple and uniform in the entire space.

Keeping an Open Plan Living Area Clutter Free

Hiding messes in an open plan living area is impossible because there is no door you can close on the room. So, apart from having a designated room of shame, what can you do to keep your open living spaces looking roomy and neat.

Storage should already be considered during the planning and design stage. This is an effective way to store everyday items in cupboards as much as possible.

It’s fine to have décor items on display as it makes the home fee homier, but make sure to leave one clear surface in every space. If you want to have vases or other items on the side cabinet, make sure the dining area is unobstructed.

Mistakes in Open Plan Living

Mistakes in renovations can be expensive. When it comes to open plan living, the number mistake is not looking at the overall size of the area and the matching proportions of the furniture. Look at the whole space, and also look at the individual zones of every area.

If the space combines that living and dining area, what you can do is divide the areas to the family requirements. This would usually involve allocating about 50% to living, 30% to dining and 20% to open space. 



Home Inspection: How to Spot a Genuine Buyer

In a superheated real estate market, a 30-minute open for inspection can attract hundreds of prospective buyers who are checking out a property.

So, the question is: How does your agent weed out the fake from the genuine among these homebuyers?

Here are some of the tell-tale signs:

  1. They have finance

Agents can tell who the genuine buyers are by identifying which of them have prepared their finance and are set to purchase. Those who don’t have a loan approved yet might be weeks or months away from being prepared to buy, or they may not be approved for a loan at all.

Many selling agents consider these buyers a waste of the agents’ time and may treat them differently, however they do provide valuable feedback.  So it’s just a matter of capturing their comments and moving on to the purchasers who are ready. 

  1. They are more inquisitive

Interested buyers will have more questions, specific questions that casual buyers wouldn’t worry about. They will ask about the terms of the contract, if the seller will sell prior and targeted questions about the state of the property.

  1. Showing a more-than-usual disinterest

The oldest negotiation trick in the book is: pretend that you dislike something when it is the opposite.

At open inspections, the buyers who are serious are those who make an effort to call attention to the property’s imperfections.

It’s a type of negotiating tactic. Buyers need leverage when negotiating with the selling agent.

  1. Timing is important

It doesn’t take a genius to know that there isn’t a buyer that is likely to emerge from the large group of people who look at the property for the first time at the last inspection.

However, the timing of their first inspection can indicate their intentions.

When a person is in the market and actively looking, they have their finger on the pulse, so they usually join in the first week of open inspection and return in the second week or ask for a private inspection.  

The first two weeks are crucial in any campaign. Genuine buyers will also spend more time checking out the property at different times of the day or when it’s raining as a fact finding mission.

  1. Ignore contract requests

Requesting a contract of sale is no longer a major sign of someone’s intention to purchase. 

The norm these days is: Many buyers request a copy of a contract of sale and the majority will not even make an offer. Everyone just wants to be nosey or they are just testing the agent to see how the agent interacts with buyers in the event they they are looking for a selling agent for themselves.

If you’re looking to sell your home sometime soon and would like an appraisal, just let me know.