NEWSLETTER
MAXWELL COLLINS NEWSLETTER - APRIL, 2017

NEW VICTORIAN LEGISLATION - EFFECTIVE 1 MAY 2017

New rules governing the conduct of Victorian real estate agents come into effect on the 1st May, 2017 which will require the advertised price of residential properties to be either a single figure, or a price range of not more than 10 per cent.

In addition the agent must supply for each advertised property a Statement of Information to be displayed at open houses and in online advertising and to be given to prospective buyers within 2 days of request.  The Statement of Information must include an indicative selling price for the property as above and must not be less than the agent’s estimated selling price or the seller’s asking price or a price in a written offer that has been rejected.  It must also include 3 comparable properties (price, address, date of sale) and the median house or unit price for the relevant suburb.

We look forward to implementing these measures to reinforce our current best practice methods and believe the industry as a whole will benefit from the assistance these will provide to buyers and the transparency they will bring to the pricing process.

 

IT'S EASTER ALREADY!

It’s hard to believe it’s Easter already, with a foretaste of the colder weather to come (hopefully not quite so much rain) and summer a distant memory.  I always find Easter a good time to reflect on the year to date, what my goals for the year are and how far along I am towards achieving them.

In terms of real estate, you may be saving for your first home, looking to upsize, downsize or to finally buy that investment property or holiday home.  If your goals are realistic and you work hard towards achieving them, 2017 could be the year your dreams come true.   Interest rates are still at historical lows and if you own an existing property you might be pleasantly surprised at its current market value.

Have a Happy Easter and stay safe on our roads.  

 

MORE AUCTION SUCCESS !

On 1 April 2017 we auctioned 23 Read Street, Newtown, a classic 3 bedroom red brick veneer home in original condition, superbly located right across the road from Elderslie Reserve. About 100 people attended the auction with bidding kicking off at $500,000 on a vendor bid and continuing on for a further 72 bids from the public until the property was eventually sold for $690,000, a massive $130,000 above the vendor’s reserve price. It was certainly a baptism of fire for our first time auctioneer, Shaun Carroll, who was kept busy for at least 20 minutes accepting all those bids.

Several under bidders for Read Street missed out and are looking to
purchase in the area, once again illustrating the strong demand for homes in original condition for investment or redevelopment purposes. If you are thinking of selling, now is a good time, with very strong demand producing outstanding results.

 

AUTUMN MARKET REVIEW

The market is still going from strength to strength as we head into Autumn and we are seeing auction results that reflect a very strong level of buyer interest and competition for homes in Geelong. A recent example is our auction of 25 Richmond Street, East Geelong which sold under the hammer in March 2017 for a significant $86,000 over the reserve. As you could imagine, our vendor was ecstatic with the result.

Economists will talk from time to time about a ‘housing bubble’ and how it is likely to burst in the short term. In almost 20 years of selling real estate in Geelong I have yet to see anything of the kind. Prices remain strong and the median price for homes and units continues to rise steadily, in some suburbs more rapidly than in others. So if you are a buyer who is waiting for that mythical ‘bust’ and for prices to decrease, you may be waiting a long time and eventually be priced out of the market. That is why now is always the best time to buy, particularly with interest rates still at such historical lows.

 

TO AUCTION OR NOT TO AUCTION?

Auction clearance rates in Geelong have been very buoyant since September 2016, often smashing the 80% mark. This is indicative of a hot market and increased competition from buyers. Auctions are fast becoming the favoured method of selling in the Greater Geelong region with sale prices regularly exceeding reserves by substantial amounts. Even homes in suburbs such as Hamlyn Heights and Newcomb (traditional private sale markets) are benefitting from the added exposure an auction brings.

A public auction is the best way to ensure that the price obtained on the day reflects the true market value of the property. It creates a sense of urgency for buyers and confines the marketing into a set period (usually 4 weeks) of intensive exposure including online and print media. And best of all, the buyer enters into an unconditional contract with no finance clause or cooling off period, ensuring added peace of mind for the seller.


A BONANZA FOR FIRST HOME BUYERS

In changes recently announced by the State Government, the First Home Owner Grant will double to $20,000 for first home buyers who enter into a contract after 1st July, 2017. This will apply to newly constructed homes and house and land packages in regional Victoria, which includes Geelong. No stamp duty will be payable by first home buyers for purchases up to $600,000 and there will be a reduced amount of stamp duty payable on a sliding scale for purchases between $600,000 and $750,000 (to be confirmed).

The aim is to assist first home buyers enter the real estate market and to stimulate the building industry, which is a key economic indicator. Investors however are not so lucky, with off the plan stamp duty concessions to be scrapped, meaning stamp duty will be assessed on the total project cost.