Add 12% to Sydney auction estimates to secure purchase: Intelligent Property Services

Add 12% to Sydney auction estimates to secure purchase: Intelligent Property Services
Add 12% to Sydney auction estimates to secure purchase: Intelligent Property Services

Intelligent Property Services says recent Sydney auction price guidance is around 12.7% below actual sale prices.

"With the Sydney market getting off to a cracking start in 2014 we saw that agents and vendors’ price expectations were being regularly eclipsed," the general manager of Intelligent Property Services, Ramon Mitchell, said.

"We believe that price guides need to be more accurate, especially given the information available to agents and the large sums of money involved in property transactions.

"Not only do real estate agents have a plethora of information available to them when they price each property, they are also supposed experts in their local area," he said.

A survey issued in August 2013 by Intelligent Property Services (IPS) reported that there was a variance of 13.1% between real estate agent price guides and the final auction result in Sydney, and a November 2013 survey showed the gap had got to 15%.

The latest 30 auction sample selection, with tabulation undertaken by head of research at Intelligent Property Services, Joe Kotevich, was from Bondi in the east to Burwood in the west at auctions from $549,000 to $1.7 million.

The results ranged from 1.5% above to the largest variance at 26%, recorded for a $1,362,000 terrace in Alexandria’s golden triangle which had an initial guide of $1 million plus.

"Some sales are pushed significantly over expectations by exuberant bidders as evidenced by the oversized studio at 12/7 Ithaca Road, Elizabeth Bay selling for $725,000 which was a whopping $165,000 over reserve, some 24% above the original guide of $550,000," said Mitchell.

"Another recent example was at the sale of 72 Ivy Street, Darlington.

"With a price guide of $700,000 plus there was approximately 100 people in attendance at the auction.

"After a slow auction bidding stalled in the $700,000’s and a vendor bid of $810,000 was used by the frustrated auctioneer; perplexing many in the crowd.

"The dilapidated terrace then passed in at $811,000 and finally sold after negotiation for $820,000 – some $120,000 over the price guide."

Mitchell said with the traditional spring selling season fast approaching, "what better time for the industry to show greater levels of transparency in order to temper buyer frustration and to give them a better chance in picking the proverbial battles that they actually have a shot at winning".

"Whilst our intention is not to infer that all properties are deliberately underquoted, nonetheless the impact remains the same.

"Whenever we ask prospective property buyers what they would rank as the most frustrating aspect of the buying process invariably the answer is the agent “lowballing” the price guide.

"In our day-to-day role as buyers agents we regularly see selling agents give would-be buyers enticingly low price guides so as to bolster their auction attendance numbers.

"Time and again we watch disappointed registered bidders walk out of auction rooms without even having had a chance to bid after having watched opening bids knock them straight out of contention," Ramon Mitchell said.

IPS will continue to monitor the market and track the results. 

Auctions numbers in Sydney are down this weekend with 416 properties scheduled to go under the hammer – 90 fewer than the 506 that were auctioned last weekend, according to Australian Property Monitors.

However auction numbers are well ahead the same weekend last year when 331 homes were auctioned.

"This continues the trend over recent months with 1,757 homes listed for auction over July well ahead of the 1,233 auctioned over July last year," APM senior economist Dr Andrew Wilson said.

The inner west will host 75 auctions followed by the south with 64, Canterbury Bankstown  with 45, the upper north shore with 42, the west with 41 and the city and east with 39.

The most popular suburb for auctions this weekend in Sydney is Blacktown in the west with eight followed by Bankstown.

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor is one of Australia's most respected property journalists, having been at the top of the game since the early 1980s. Jonathan co-founded the property industry website Property Observer and has written for national and international publications.

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