On January the 1st 2016, new legislation passed that prevents a real estate agent from giving a rough, estimated price to a potential buyer. Instead, realtors must now give buyers a price range thats within 10 percent of the lowest to highest acceptable price.
The New Underquoting Law
Under the new law, real estate agents cannot say that they are asking for offers over or offers above a certain figure. In addition, agents must also provide evidence of their estimated value of a property, and this advice needs to be included in their agency agreement.
If an agent is found to be breaching the new Underquoting Law, then they can be fined $22,000. Plus, they may forfeit any commission or fee gained from the sale of their property.
However, its important to note that underquoting legislation does not apply to property that is sold under private treaty if a value is put on a property. For instance, if a property is advertised for $520,000, then thats its price.
Agent Response to the New Underquoting Law
Many realtors are suggesting that this newly introduced law is just a knee-jerk reaction to an election promise made when property prices were booming, especially in Sydney. These realtors also suggest that there are holes in the changes. For instance, home buyers will have to do their own research on any purchases they make because an agent can now only give them advice on a propertys value, not what the vendor is willing to accept or what a reserve may be at auction.
Many agents have said that they would also like to see agent qualifications reviewed so that the industry becomes a fairer playing field. At present, an agent with 6-months experience is earning the same as one with 20-years. Realtors should have a tiered level, with 1 being for newly appointed agents, 2 being for agents with over 10-years experience and, 3 being for agents with more than 20-years experience.
Property Buyers Response to the New Underquoting Law
The response by property buyers to the new law has been mostly positive, with the buyer and seller knowing what price is being asked right from the start. According to buyers, while most real estate agents were upfront about the pricing of a property before the law was passed, some would quote the price of a property as being 20 percent less to get buyers interested in a property. This was deemed as unfair.
Propertys that list their price are also attracting more buyers, as according to Domain, if a property has no price listed most potential buyers wont even look at the property. These buyers simply dismiss the property and move on to look at other property.
In todays property market, home buyers want to know what theyre buying and how much its going to cost them. An accurate price guide allows them to calculate their costs, such as stamp duty and they can also compare sales data and do their own research.
But, of course, if youre looking to sell your property there are ways you can increase its asking price, and buyer appeal. Lets look at these now.
Ways that You Can Maximise Your Home Price When Selling
If youre looking to sell your home, then realtors recommend doing a few odd-jobs, before you get your home valued. This will then enable you to get a higher asking price right from the start. The three most important consideration before an agent calls are as follows:
1. Dress-up your garden and entrance Presentation is a must. The entrance to your home is what an agent and a potential buyer will see first. So you want to look its best. If you have brown lawn, water it. If your lawn is overgrown, mow it. Give any hedges a trim. Clean-up leaf litter, and paths. Remove dead plants, and possibly plant a few older plants to fill-in any gaps in your garden. A lush, green garden makes any home look like a million-dollar property.
2. Declutter your home Sure you love ornaments and pictures in your home, but these can sometimes detract from the ambience your property generates. So to make your home standout, along with its features, pack-up your trinkets so that an agent and potential buyer can see your home in all its splendour.
3. Clean your home till it sparkles A fresh, clean home stands out. It is pleasing, inviting and leaves a lasting impression. So open your windows and doors, let in the light and the air. Polish glass, counter tops, shower screens and floors until they glisten.
Are you looking to sell your property and buy another? Then contact eChoice today and find a cost-effective home loan.
Written by eChoice
Since 1998, eChoice has helped more than 50,000 Australians secure a home loan through its network of over 25 lenders and hundreds of loans. Best of all our service is cost and obligation free!