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Getting The Competitive Edge In Hot Markets - August 2021

By Rich Harvey, CEO & Founder, propertybuyer.com.au

The rapid pace of price rises over the past 12-month has brought many buyers to the point of total frustration. Despite their efforts, it’s become impossible to stand out from other purchasers and snag a property.
Well, that’s how it may seem from the outside, but I’m here to reveal a professional secret. There are ways to gain the competitive edge in a hot market – you just need to know what to do and who to lean on.
Here are the ways buyers’ agents cut through a crowded marketplace and give you the tools to make fast-and-smart decisions.

Coaching
There’s a whole gamut of emotional and practical highs and lows that come with purchasing property. Unless you work in this industry daily, it’s easy to be caught up in the stresses and strains of the process.
Here’s the first way buyers’ agents can help clients get ahead. We are trusted advisors who draw on years of experience to provide wise counsel when things get tough.
I deal regularly with clients who become despondent in fast-rising markets. They miss out on properties time and again – constantly being gazumped or watching listing numbers dwindle until the anxiety boils over.
They then make crazy bids to secure a home at well above market value, or lose interest all together and leave the market. Bailing out of the process is especially problematic when home values are on the way up. Putting off a purchase by a year won’t help your situation because the property you desire will have risen another 10 per cent in value by the time you’re ready to go again.
Buyers’ agent will lay out the realities and help shoulder the burden. They keep you laser focused on your end goal – the home you’ve always wanted at the right price. An ideal property will come up – it just takes time, effort and persistence. These are traits we have (on your behalf) in abundance.
And it’s a journey we go on together. Some transactions can happen in a week, others can take three months. Most take 30 to 60 days. But no matter how long, we’re with you all the way.
Also, buyers’ agents are the conduit and guide that sits between you and the selling agent. Purchasers often feel overwhelmed and under pressure when dealing with selling agents. That’s understandable – the agent wants to secure the best possible price for their seller. They want buyers to feel a sense of urgency and competition.
But buyers’ agent can inject realism into the conversation. They remove the burden of desperation.
We also can guide clients on how to act in a manner that will give them the best possible chance of securing a home. For example, we coach clients on how to behave at open houses with advice such as, ‘Don’t show too much emotion – even if you love it. Wait until you’re in the car to let out that scream of delight!’

It’s also important to deal with agents appropriately. Aggression rarely delivers the result you want.
You need to build a human connection with the agent. This means being kind, congenial, and complimentary. Retain your sense of humour and never be ‘high-maintenance’. Also, deliver what you say you will in a timely way, especially when it comes to offers. And express genuine gratitude to the seller if given the opportunity too.
One big challenge for buyers’ agents is managing expectations. Most buyers want a champagne property on a beer budget, but Aussie property trades in a free market. Instead of holding out endlessly for a deal that will probably never happen, you need to realign your thinking and expectations.
Any buyers’ agent who guarantees you the bargain of the century is just touting for business.
What we promise is that you’ll often get to look at a listing well before most others because we are well connected.

Risk mitigation
Buyers’ agents are also a safety net for clients.
First up is price. You must understand a home’s market value and gauge your price tolerance against this. This means having a buyers’ agent carefully, accurately and diligently evaluate the property’s value.
Of course, this extends beyond price as well. We can dissect the pros and cons of an individual property without the cloudiness of market spin used in the listing description.
We also know what question to ask the agent to determine what the sellers’ motivations are. This can help us spot flexibilities that will make your offer stand out against all others. Are the vendors looking for a longer or shorter settlement? Is there a desire to rent back the home? These could be negotiable points which help secure the deal.
Due diligence extends to the property itself as well. Buyers that’re too keen on a property will often justify its shortcomings – but ignoring detriments can be a financially fatal error. For example, dismissing the impacts of traffic noise, power lines and easements can get you into big trouble and severely effect your resale figure in the future.
Another element is how suitable and future proof a property is for the buyer. Can it ‘grow’ along with your family? Will it be easy to retain and rent out if you want to flip it into your portfolio when you move on? There are plenty of considerations that must be included in your thinking.

Networking
Finally – buyers’ agents deliver a huge advantage through their network of selling agents.
We spend years developing relationships with our agent contacts. These interactions are built on mutual respect for each other’s expertise, time and knowledge.
We have very strong rapport with sales agent – they know we make the process much easier and smoother because we understand the ins and outs of price and contract negotiation.
These relationships have particularly come to the fore during the pandemic. We are among the first in the market to get inspection access for properties about to be listed. This preferential treatment means our client get a chance to find their dream home and make an offer well before most other purchasers even know it’s on the market.
Also, we never play games with the agents – and they know it. Playing a straight bat gets everyone to the bottom line faster. Knowing when to go forward with deal and when to walk away builds our reputation among agents as well.

So, when markets run hot, don’t fly solo. A buyers’ agent in your corner can cut through the noise and help you secure the home you’ve always wanted with minimum fuss.

 

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