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Live overseas? Buying in Sydney?

Need help buying in Sydney? Property buying can be tricky, especially if you live overseas. You need an experienced buyers agent who can navigate the market for you. Using a buyers agent can provide several benefits when purchasing a house.

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Where to buy can be confusing. Photo by Catarina Sousa on Pexels.com

What are Some of the Benefits of Using a buyers agent?

Local Market Knowledge

A buyer’s agent has extensive knowledge of the local housing market, including property values, trends, and neighborhoods. This can help you make an informed decision about which areas to focus on and which properties are likely to offer the best value for your money. Sometimes it even comes down to knowing which streets are better than others and what Council plans are for the specific area/s.

Access to Off-market Properties

A buyer’s agent may have access to properties that are not listed on public real estate websites or advertised to the general public. This can provide you with more options and potentially lead to finding a property that is a better fit for your needs. Further to this there are pre-market and post-market properties that your buyers agent may be privvy to or a they may go much further and door knock or letterbox drop to get you the right property.

Negotiating Power

A buyer’s agent is experienced in negotiating the best possible price and terms for a property. They can help you navigate the negotiation process and ensure that you are getting the best deal possible. Remember though, price is just one factor and sometimes the market supply and demand dynamics favour buyers and sometimes sellers. The trick is to learn everything about the vendors motivation and therefore structure the offer in the best possible light. For example the vendor may have purchased elsewhere or they may be ok with a longer settlement, it is the buyers agent job to know and use this as a factor in the negotiations.

Streamlined Process

Buying a house can be a complicated process, especially if you are unfamiliar with the local laws and regulations. A buyer’s agent can help you navigate the process for you from a distance, including arranging video inspections, organising financing, organising pest and building inspections and handling the exchange and settlement process.

Peace of Mind

Using a buyer’s agent can provide you with peace of mind, knowing that you have an experienced professional working on your behalf to find the best property at the best price. They can also help ensure that the purchase process goes smoothly and that you are not taken advantage of by unscrupulous sellers or agents.

Overall, using a buyer’s agent can be a smart investment when purchasing a house in Sydney, especially if you are from another country and unfamiliar with the local market and process.

Here’s a case study of a couple from the UK and their buying process from afar.

Case Study – UK Couple buying in Sydney

This is a hypothetical case as we’ve tried to show ALL the different steps and issues that can arise.

portrait of happy young woman using mobile phone in city
Model depiction of John and Sarah our fictitious UK couple buying in Sydney.
Photo by J carter on Pexels.com

John and Sarah are a couple from the UK who are interested in buying a house in Sydney, Australia. They are a professional couple in their 30’s and hoping to have children in the next 5 years. They have never been to Sydney and have limited knowledge of the local housing market. They have some friends in Bondi and Freshwater, but really confused about what they can afford for their lifestyle and budget. They decide to use House Hunters to help them with the process.

Step 1: Determine their budget

John and Sarah sold their property in London and have £500,000 (approximately AUD $925,000) for the purchase of their new home. They engage House Hunters Buyers Agency to determine what types of properties are available in their price range. They also consider the lifestyle opportunities in the different neighborhoods of Sydney. Without borrowing they can purchase for $925,000 including stamp duty and costs but determine via a locally referred mortgage broker that they can borrow up to $1m. This additional borrowing enables the search to broaden to more beachside suburbs in Sydney and brings their maximum purchase price to $1,750,000 (leaving them with a buffer for moving and furniture expenses).

Step 2: Research the housing market

House Hunters sets off to research the local housing market and present John and Sarah with listings of different properties that meet their criteria. They drill down to what areas would be best suited for their lifestyle and interests and agree upon 2 bedroom apartments. Desired location determined between Potts Point and Bondi Beach as this is between workplace and beach.

Step 3: Search for ideal property commences

House Hunters begin a thorough on market search of properties online, they contact local agents that may have off market, pre market or post market properties. A specific selection is recommended to John and Sarah based on their personalities and desires specified in their initial brief. They are excited about two of the properties which House Hunters proceed to investigate further and for due diligence to commence. This involves market comparisons of what is currently on the market and what has recently sold. It is compared with what is happening in the marketplace with supply and demand.

Step 4: Personal Inspections and Video Inspections

House Hunters attends open house inspections on behalf of John and Sarah who then view properties online. House Hunters organises virtual inspections via video call, and their buyers’ agent Valeria is able to walk them through the property and answer any questions they may have. House Hunters discuss the properties with the two agents who have listed these properties to identify the vendors motivations and get a gauge for the market volatility and price comparisons.

Step 5: Building and Pest Inspections

House Hunters then organises a pest and building inspection after finding a property they like, the inspections are done by a local inspector. They receive a detailed report outlining any potential issues with the property. It’s important to note that some vendors in New South Wales will have a pest and building inspection already available at a nominal cost. At this point it may be necessary to obtain another more detailed inspection or it may be decided that a pest and building report is not required at all, depending on the condition and the urgency of the sale.

Step 6: Make an offer

After reviewing the building inspection report and consulting with House Hunters, John and Sarah make an offer (via HH) on a property that meets their criteria. Their buyer’s agent helps them negotiate the price and terms of the sale.

Step 7: Complete the purchase

John and Sarah’s offer is made on a signed contract of sale and sign a 66W to exchange with a 10% deposit and offer a faster 4 week settlement period. This offer is accepted by the vendor. They use a local conveyancer recommended by House Hunters to handle the legal aspects of the purchase.

Overall, using House Hunters as their buyers agency helped John and Sarah navigate the complex process of buying real estate in Sydney from the UK. They were able to find a property that met their needs and budget, and complete the purchase remotely with minimal hassle.

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