We believe that selling your property can be stress free and exciting when you have the right knowledge and insights. A good starting point is to understand what is involved in the selling process, so you are prepared for each stage.

Outlined below are the 10 key steps to selling a property. For a more in-depth look download our Selling a Property Guide which is filled with information on everything you need to know about selling you property and importantly how to maximise your sale price.

Step 1 Research your local market

The first step to successfully selling a property is to understand what is happening in the wider national economy, what stage of the property cycle your State or Territory is in, and specifically what is happening in your suburb. Knowing this information can help you make smarter selling decisions.

Step 2 Have your property appraised by your local McGrath Sales Agent

Knowing how much your property could sell for in the current market is another key step when selling. Your local McGrath Sales Agent can provide you with an obligation free property appraisal for your property. They will review the local market and look at similar properties that have sold in the last 90 days. They will review properties that are currently on the market, wider market trends and specific features of your individual property to provide you with a comprehensive appraisal report. Find out more about what is involved in the property appraisal process here.

Step 3 Choose a method of sale

There are three main ways to sell a property in Australia; private treaty/private sale, auction, tender/expression of interest. Each of these methods suit different properties and different markets and your real estate agent is the best person to help guide you. They will consider the following elements before recommending the best method of sale:

  • Property type
  • Property location
  • Market condition
  • Timing – how quickly you want to sell
  • Personal preferences

Step 4 Prepare your property for sale

Styling and preparing your property for sale can add between 5% -10% to the final sale price. It helps attract more people and has a direct impact on how quickly the property sells. To find out what you should do to prepare each room and space of your property download our Preparing your Property for Sale Checklist.

Step 5 Engage a conveyancer or lawyer to draw up the Contract of Sale

Selling a property is a legal process and while you are not required to have a conveyancer or lawyer manage the settlement, managing the documentation and settlement of your property’s sale can be complicated. Having a team of experts familiar with the legal documents and legislation within your State or Territory, can provide you peace of mind and ensure the process runs smoothly.

Step 6 Marketing of your property commences

A key factor of a successful sales campaign is the marketing plan. A strong marketing campaign should be focused on reaching all possible local and active buyers, as well as pinpointing potential passive and out of area buyers. A strong marketing plan should include a mix of print, digital, local area marketing and database marketing.

Step 7 Offers received or the property goes to auction

If you are selling by private treaty/private sale, interested buyers will make an offer to your agent who will in-turn present them to you for consideration. The agent will then negotiate on your behalf until you are happy with the price. If selling by auction your property will be presented for public sale and if the hammer falls and the price is on or over the reserve, the property will be sold to the highest bidder. If you are selling via expression of interest/tender, buyers will submit their best offers by a particular time and date and your agent will negotiate with them to achieve an outcome both of you are happy with.

Step 8 Contract signed and deposit paid

Once the buyer and seller have agreed to sell the property or it has been sold by auction, the first step to legalise the sale is to sign and exchange the Contract of Sale. There will be two copies of the Contract of Sale, one for you and one for the buyer. You each sign one copy before they are swapped or as it’s called in some states ‘exchanged’. This process can be facilitated by your real estate agent, your solicitor or conveyancer. At the time of the exchange, the buyer will be required to pay a deposit, which is normally 10% of the purchase price, and this will be held in trust by the real estate agent or your conveyancer.

Step 9 Property settles

As settlement day approaches, your conveyancer or lawyer will work with the buyer’s settlement team to ensure all the legal obligations of the contract have been fulfilled. They will make all payments and lodge the correct documents with the relevant land registration office. Assuming all goes to plan, final payment will be made to you and the keys will be handed over to the new buyer.

Step 10 Celebrate a great result

We are pretty sure you will know how to celebrate the successful sale without us telling you.

For more than 20 years, the benefits of staging a home have been well documented. Numerous studies show that staging helps sell a home faster and for a higher price. According to the National Association of REALTORS®, 88 percent of home buyers start their search online, forming impressions within three seconds of viewing a listing. When a home is well staged, it photographs well and makes the kind of the first impression that encourages buyers to take the next step.

Studies also indicate that buyers decide if they’re interested within the first 30 seconds of entering a home. Not only does home staging help to remove potential red flags that can turn buyers off, but it also helps them begin to imagine living there. Homes that are professionally staged look more “move-in ready” and that makes them far more appealing to potential buyers.

According to the Village Voice, staged homes sell in one-third less time than non-staged homes. Staged homes can also command higher prices than non-staged homes. Data compiled by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development indicate that staged homes sell for approximately 17 percent more than non-staged homes.

A measurable difference in time and money

In a study conducted by the Real Estate Staging Association in 2007, a group of vacant homes that had remained unsold for an average of 131 days were taken off the market, staged, and relisted. The newly staged properties sold, on average, in just 42 days, – which is approximately 68 percent less time on the market.

The study was repeated in 2011, in a more challenging market, and the numbers were even more dramatic. Vacant homes that were previously on the market for an average of 156 days as unstaged properties, when listed again as staged properties, sold after an average of 42 days—an average of 73 percent less time on the market.

Small investments, big potential returns

Staging is a powerful advantage when selling your home, but that’s not the only reason to do it. Staging uncovers problems that need to be addressed, repairs that need to be made, and upgrades that should be undertaken. For a relatively small investment of time and money, you can reap big returns. Staged properties are more inviting, and that inspires the kind of peace-of-mind that gets buyers to sign on the dotted line. In the age of social media, a well-staged home is a home that stands out, gets shared, and sticks in people’s minds.

What’s more, the investment in staging can bring a higher price. According to the National Association of REALTORS, the average staging investment is between one percent and three percent of the home’s asking price, and typically generates a return of eight to ten percent.

In short, less time on the market and higher selling prices make the small cost of staging your home a wise investment.

Interested in learning more? Contact your real estate agent for information about the value of staging and referrals for professional home stagers.