Expert insight for selling at auction.
Q. How does an auctioneer get ‘briefed’ on a property?
Before an auction, typically a pre-auction meeting will be held. This is where an auctioneer will be told the owners expectation, which is usually the reserve. Sometimes the reserve is set a bit higher, with vendors realistic in the fact they may negotiate on the day to meet the market.
The auctioneer will also be told how many buyers the agent anticipates will be bidding for the property, and also where they’d indicated they saw value. Recent, comparable sales information is also very handy – you can literally reference a recent sale during your auction preamble to the crowd, to set relevance and precedent.
Q. How much research and preparation (by the auctioneer) goes into a typical auction?
As well as talking to the agent throughout the campaign, I will hop onto Domain and read all descriptions, view all photos, floor plans and videos, as well as making sure I’m across all geographical considerations – schools, shops, transport and amenities.
Q. How much involvement does an auctioneer typically have? Do auctioneers visit a property before auction day?
That really varies from auctioneer to auctioneer, but I’d like to think that all auctioneers are in the practice of working with their agents throughout the length of the campaign, conducting thorough research on the property, and making themselves available for pre-auction meetings or phone calls with the home owner. Our job is about relationships and results, and they come hand in hand.
Q. What would you tell someone who’s trying to decide between auction and private treaty?
I’d tell them to choose auction! In all seriousness, I wholeheartedly believe that the auction process offers both buyer and seller the best process in which to transact property. As someone currently looking for a property myself, hopping online and seeing a property ‘For Sale’ one day, then ‘Under Offer’ the next is difficult – how do those owners know what I would have paid? It sold in three days, and I can only inspect on weekends.
Had that property been listed for auction, I would have a chance to inspect, consider, and even buy, because the vendor wouldn’t have excluded me from the negotiation. That said, there are without a doubt countless agents who are experts at all methods of sales. I take nothing away from the negotiation skills of an agent via the private treaty method, but I do prefer the transparency of auctions, and would urge sellers to discuss all options with their agent, and of course choose the method which is most comfortable to them and their circumstance.
Q. What are your top tips for sellers at their auction?
- Trust in your agent’s advice – markets are moving so quickly with interest rate movement affecting buyers’ habits and spend levels.
- Sales are happening between the day you list and the day of your auction, and these results influence your property’s potential.
- An agent’s real-time feedback from the marketplace is vital to setting a reserve that is in tune with a live, real-time marketplace. Taking this advice on board will give you the best opportunity to capitalise on that knowledge and to sell at a great price.
If you found this useful, you might also be interested in our insider’s look at buying at auction.
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