It is no secret that Sydney stock levels are at an all time low and coupled with the the cooler winter months, it may seem as though the market is scarce with minimal property available for sale which, lets be honest, when you’re looking to buy …is incredibly frustrating!
What’s interesting though, is that about 60% of property we are inspecting at the moment is off-market. In fact, 5 out of the last 7 properties I have purchased have been off-market with 4 of them being exclusive offerings for my clients.
Why would a vendor sell off-market?
This is a great question that I am asked time and time again. There are numerous reasons a vendor might choose to sell off-market including;
- To keep the sale of their property private – they do not wish for neighbours, friends or family to know that they are selling. Typically, these types of people are private people or people going through divorce and don’t want to have hordes of people coming through their property on a weekly basis
- They may have kids going though school/HSC which can make the sale process and going to market a difficult option
- The ability to save on marketing costs (which can be in the tens of thousands of dollars) and having to ‘present’ their property for sale
- Often people who buy off-market tend to sell off-market
- The property could be tenanted and I often find that some landlords, especially those with good long term tenants, would rather not disrupt the tenants by putting it on the market
- The property might simply be overpriced
What are the benefits of buying off-market?
One of the main benefits of buying off-market is the opportunity to purchase with little or no competition. If you are lucky, you will find an exclusive opportunity through an agent or one direct through a vendor who is willing to sell for a fair price without involving other parties to drive the price up – something everyone wants but also something that is very hard to do without the right help and guidence!
The one thing you have to be cautious of is off-market property being overpriced. It’s well known that some properties are being offered for sale off-market because they are simply overpriced and will not achieve the vendors asking price in an on-market/auction campaign. It is critical that you do your research, know the market you are buying in and have the ability to understand/quantify value whilst knowing what a fair price should be.
How do you get access to off-market stock?
Getting access to off-market stock might not be as hard as you thought if you are prepared to put a little effort in. Some of the many ways to access off-market properties are as follows;
- Call and introduce yourself to every agent within the area you are looking to buy and let them know what you are after, ask them to add you to their database – this way you will be amongst the first to get an email about any new on or off-market property they might have
- Identify specific areas/streets that you want to live in and approach the owners directly through door knocking or calling
- Use online portals/websites such as Property Whispers or Nokk to search for suitable off-market listings
- Build a strong network and good relationships within the local community which will allow you to uncover off-market opportunities through networking
- Employ a Buyer’s Agent – A good local Buyer’s Agent will have all of the above covered and much more!
The off-market property trade in Australia is a very real thing, a great alternative to the traditional buying/selling of real estate and something that is growing in popularity as the years go by. If you want to be in the drivers seat and have the greatest advantage when it comes time for you to purchase your next property, make sure you have the resources available to allow you to tap into this side of the market which I am sure will give your property search a nice little boost.
As always, happy buying!! If I can be of any help to you, please don’t hesitate to call or drop me an email.