News


Whats best: Sale or Auction?


  Whats Best: Sale or Auction? The Pro's and Con's of each approach         Not sure whether you should go for a sale or an auction when selling your property? Read on for the pros and cons of using these two approaches. Once you’ve done your research and selected a good real estate agent to sell your property, you will need to decide on the most appropriate method to sell your home. There are two main ways to sell a property in Australia. One is by private sale (also known as private treaty) where you welcome buyers to submit offers to your agent or you represent yourself. The other is by auction, where buyers turn up on a predetermined date and time to bid on your property. Your agent will be able to advise you about which method of sale is best suited to your home and location. In the meantime, read on for the lowdown on these two methods.   Selling via private treaty With a standard residential property transaction,...


Have open homes reached their end date?


  Have open homes reached their end date?             With the Internet age, could open houses be losing their importance? And, anyway, who do they benefit more: the home seller or the real estate agent? Open homes have been an important part of the real estate selling process for many decades, providing would-be buyers with the opportunity to walk through a home and decide whether or not it suits them. Real estate agents used to promote open homes as the most effective way to sell your property because they provided an opportunity for the broadest number of would-be purchasers to see your home. It was said they made selling faster and homes would obtain a better price.   In the days when would-be buyers searched the classifieds section of the newspaper on a Saturday morning and had only a few short lines of copy to read to learn about properties for sale, open homes made sense. Now, however, anyone looking to pu...


The Lowdown on negotiating commission and fees


  The lowdown on negotiating commission and fees.             With so many costs involved in selling your home, you may want to save some money and negotiate your agent’s commission and fee structure. If you do so, here are a few things you need to be aware of. Considering all the costs involved in selling a home – think stamp duty, capital gains tax, legal fees, bank charges and simply preparing your property for sale– you may be keen on negotiating on your real estate agent’s commission and fees. Commission is the percentage of the sale price that the agent receives for selling your property while the fees are designed to cover the advertising and marketing costs. However, agents often structure their fees differently. For more expensive properties, some will use a ‘sliding scale’ or ‘tiered’ commission, perhaps 2% on the first amount and 5% when they achieve anything above t...


WHY ONE PIECE OF PAPER COULD SAVE YOU A MOTZA!


  Why one piece of paper could save you a motza! All about quotation guarantees         With under quoting still rife in New South Wales, one way to protect yourself is to request a home seller’s protection guarantee   Underquoting is a dishonest practice used by some real estate agents. It occurs when an agent deliberately quotes a price that is below their own estimated selling price and is done in an effort to drive interest so they can sell your property as quickly as possible and pocket the commission. It’s quite clear why they do this when you consider that the average commission they receive is 2% to 3%, which can equate to $10,000 to $15,000 on a $500,000 sale. The benefits for the agent are substantial.   “Although under quoting is illegal in most states, including New South Wales, it is still practiced by more unscrupulous agents. Efforts have been made by various state bodies, including Fair Tra...


Why buying local is best


  STAR TIP: Why 'Buying local' is best           Does ‘buying local’ matter when looking for an agent to sell your property? Our answer is a resounding yes! Here’s why. All good agents are knowledgeable about selling real estate, but they can’t all know about the particularities of each area. If you’re living in Newcastle East, Nelson Bay or Maitland, would it make sense to use an agent who specialises in homes in the Central Coast or Lake Macquarie? Read on to discover the four key benefits of ‘buying local’:   1 More realistic appraisals Only a local will be able to provide you with an accurate valuation on your home. They will be familiar with exactly which properties have sold over the past weeks, months and years and know the prices they sold for. And they may well have sold three or four nearby homes at some point in time.They’ll also be well aware of local property tre...


How to attract good tenants


  How to attract good tenants. 4 great tips for rental success.             Your rental property is one of your most valuable assets – so it goes without saying that you want to secure a quality tenant. Finding someone who looks after your investment property, pays their rent on time and lets you know about any maintenance issues before they become bigger problems takes a lot of the stress and hassle out of being a landlord.     At McElwaine Estate Agents, we work hard to ensure that owning an investment property is simple and rewarding. Our property management team is here to help you to maximise your rental returns while growing the value of your rental. In our experience, there are a number of simple and low-cost things that landlords can do to attract quality tenants – and add value to their property in the long-term:     Consider your target market This sounds like a no-brainer &nd...