Freely available sales information is a double-edged sword for sellers today. It makes it easier to do the homework in setting a listing price, but your buyers are also well informed, and if that price is too high they will simply choose the next result on their search list. The web really is transforming the way buyers research and choose their property. And Australia’s dominant real estate portal has now released a tool that makes every home buyer an expert in their chosen neighbourhood.
Realestate.com.au has always had a click through to old web ads showing properties marked as sold. But agents being agents, very few of these listings showed accurate sales data. Hoping to generate phone enquiry, dimwit agents would put massive ranges on their sales record – “$500,000-600,000” or similar.
REA’s alliance with RP Data will now give buyers exactly what they want.
RP Data collate titles office records and the links at the bottom of every property ad will now show fully accurate sales prices and dates. Where possible it will include a link to the old web ad as well. This list of the 6 most recent sales in the suburb will match the search – apartments or houses. It’s a simple tool and while it’s not a complete match of data to the chosen home it does brings enormous power to a buyer’s negotiating position.
Very few homes are identical so a good agent, presenting your property with well-targeted promotion, can still achieve a price that exceeds recent sales. History is history and buyers know that markets can move.
But agents that rely on their ‘insider knowledge’ to bluff a buyer will find the going even tougher. More than ever the marketing of property needs to be about finding points of difference, key features that benefit that particular buyer, and establishing value in their minds.
This is no longer a game to be played by amateurs.