Just as a buyer can employ the services of a buyer’s agent to assist with the purchase of property, sellers can utilize a Sellers Advocate to guide and assist them through the process of selling their property.
A Sellers Advocate isn’t to be confused with the sales agency. A Sellers Advocate is engaged to guide the seller through the entire process, from finding the best sales agent right through to the final knock of the hammer, or pen hitting the paper.
Firstly, a Sellers Advocate will impartially assess the market value of the property. They will give you an honest assessment of the value your property will attract in the market. This stage is all about giving you the best understanding of the sale you could expect for your asset.
Sales agents can sometimes get vendors initially excited as to how much the property could sell for, and then condition the price down as the campaign progresses. Sellers Advocates will tell you straight away the estimated price so you avoid nasty surprises or disappointments later on.
The Sellers Advocate will then invite handpicked agents to provide market appraisal of the property. This will determine how closely aligned the Sellers Advocate and the sales agent believe the property could sell for.
Based on the result of these appraisals, the Sellers Advocate will advise you on the best agent to work with on the campaign. The final decision will take into consideration the sales agents’ knowledge of the area as well as their market share and presence in that market. This is to ensure a thorough understanding of what buyers in the area are looking for, and to achieve strong interest through a healthy profile and brand awareness.
The Sellers Advocate can negotiate the commission terms which benefits the vendor and creates incentives for the sales agent to reach a better result. They can also guide you on developing an appropriately cost effective marketing strategy. Depending on the property, the vendor may not need to employ a full package of marketing elements.
For example, print media, which is quite expensive, is used to advertise the sales agents as much as the property. Your property may only require internet and digital advertising to attract a large buyer pool. The Sellers Advocate can help you determine what will work best for your property and ensure you aren’t spending money unnecessarily.
The Sellers Agent will oversee the campaign from beginning to end. They will guide you and answer any questions you have, always acting in your best interests. Their role is to provide you with honest advice that gets you the very best result.
If you own an investment property…
If you are selling an investment property which is currently tenanted, there are a few things to take into consideration. Engaging a Seller’s Advocate can assist you with managing the tenants through the sales process. There are some important factors to take into consideration.
- In a fixed agreement, the property owner cannot make the tenant leave because they decide to sell the property. The tenant can stay until the end of the term, and the new owner will become the lessor.
- If the tenant is in a periodic agreement, and the property owner requires vacant possession, they must give the tenant a Notice to leave (Form 12) or Form R12 for rooming accommodation. The tenant must have at least 4 weeks’ notice from the signing of the contract of sale.
- The property manager/owner must give the tenant a Notice of lessor’s intention to sell premises (Form 10) which must include details of how they plan to market the property.
- An open house or on-site auction can only be held if the tenant agrees in writing.
- If the property is put up for sale within two months of a tenancy starting and the tenant was not informed that the intention to sell the property at the time of signing the agreement, the tenant has the option of ending the agreement with two weeks’ notice. The tenant must give the Intention of notice to leave (Form 13) to the property manager/owner within 2 weeks after the end of the initial 2 month period of the tenancy.
- If the selling agent is different from the agent who manages the property, the selling agent must also give the letting agent a copy of each Entry notice before entering the property.
- If a property is being repossessed by a financial institution which had not agreed to the property being rented, they can give the tenant 2 months to leave (30 days for rooming accommodation), using a Notice to vacate from mortgagee to tenant (Form 19) or Form R19 for rooming accommodation. If they had agreed to it being used as a rental property, they can end a periodic agreement with two months’ notice, but cannot end a fixed term agreement earlier than the end date unless the tenant agrees.