The above question is one of the first out of the mouth of any potential buyer and Define Property principal Ross Cattle says he hears it from the very first day he lists a property.
Why? Because buyers are weighing up whether they can come in with an offer lower than the listed asking price and the longer a property spends on the market, the more likely they are to think the seller is open to negotiation.
In the industry, this is known as price creep and shows a direct correlation between how long a property is on the market for and its final sale price.
The REIQ Queensland Market Monitor March Quarter 2019 report shows Sunshine Coast properties are spending less time on the market than the state median and are also attracting a lower vendor discount as a result.
In this report, the REIQ has changed the method of calculating the days on market and vendor discount from average calculation to a median calculation.
CoreLogic RP Data Market Trends quoted in the QMM report show Sunshine Coast houses are spending a median 39 days on the market, compared to 47 days for Queensland and Coast vendors are discounting a median of 3.9 per cent compared to 4.8 per cent statewide. This discount was the smallest in the state.
Coast units are spending a median of 50 days on the market, 10 days less that the state median, with a 3.1 per cent vendor discount.
The report states that even though it appears the Coast’s market is moderating, days on market continue to trend down over the past year, with the region reducing its days on market for homes by three days in the past 12 months.
Mr Cattle says the QMM report’s figures are consistent with what he has seen in the first quarter of the year, but March was “one of the biggest months [for sales] I’ve done in the last 14 months.”
“When you look at April and May, things were taking a little bit longer and the election always creates uncertainty among buyers, but in the 10 to 12 days after the election, we secured $10 million worth of sales and June was consistent with what we’d expect at this time of year.”
With the median vendor discount increasing by just 0.2 per cent in the past 12 months, Mr Cattle says this is an indication the Coast market is stable.
“It is the most consistent market I can remember in the last 20 years in real estate. We haven’t had the massive price hikes and reductions seen in the southern states, and this is possibly the first time the Coast has stood on its own in terms of how it has reacted to market conditions,” he says.
Mr Cattle says sellers get into the ‘danger zone’ at around five weeks if they still haven’t sold their property and will have to prepare themselves for lower offers to come in.
“The way to avoid this is to invest in the marketing process to ideally sell your home in the strongest timeframe, which is typically two to three weeks,” he says.
“To do that, you have to reach every single buyer that could possibly want to buy your home. People seem to be so concerned about saving on marketing, but lots of people, some agents as well, don’t realise how detrimental this it to the sale price you can achieve.
“The more people that look at a property, the more potential buyers you attract, the faster it will sell and at a higher price.”
Having invested in a number of marketing avenues from brochures to online videos and re-targeted marketing, Mr Cattle says they continue to see greater inquiries for properties generated from print advertisements than through portals like realestate.com.au and Domain.
“When you’ve got people interstate looking to buy on the Sunshine Coast, they search for Maroochydore or Mooloolaba online, they don’t realise there are all these ‘hidden’ gems like Wurtulla, Bokarina and Parrearra and this is where print boosts the success of holistic marketing campaigns,” he says.
“Sellers should also never underestimate the presentation of their property to get them a quicker sale. Sometimes it’s just a matter of a little elbow-grease.”
How we stack up
The Sunshine Coast market is looking much stronger than the state averages. With Coast houses spending 39 days on the market with a median 3.9 per cent vendor discount. By contrast, the state median days on market is 47 with a median vendor discount of 4.8 per cent.
When it comes to units, the Coast median is 50 days on market with a 3.1 per cent discount and the Queensland median is 60 days on market and 4.8 per cent vendor discount