19 May 2020

Agile real estate agents beat the downturn

Start the conversation
Independent property

Sales enquiry rates are strong despite some reduction in demand, reports Independent Managing Director John Minns. Photo: Supplied.

The recent ban on auctions and open inspections due to COVID-19 has changed the way property is transacted in Canberra but the market has remained steady, according to SQM Research that shows asking prices were up 0.2 per cent in April despite the restrictions.

Independent Managing Director John Minns says there are plenty of reasons to stay optimistic.

“Our sales inquiry rates have been strong despite some reduction in demand. We have had nearly 3500 enquiries just from the real estate portals in April, and 83 sales for the month is a really positive result,” John said.

“Canberra is a strong market, with stability provided by significant public sector employment. Agents who take the time to support and understand people buying and selling in this environment are achieving some great results.”

The ‘Our Team’ trio at Independent Inner North and City turned to live streaming when an interstate buyer was unable to view a property due to COVID-19 travel restrictions. They created a detailed walkthrough video of the Turner property so the buyers could feel they were there in person.

“They loved it,” said Aaron Lewis of ‘Our Team’. “The buyer admitted afterward that they’d watched it about 50 times.”

The buyers were so keen they made an offer $20,000 over the price guide before the property even went to auction.

“Our sellers had been really nervous that the perceived market conditions would mean they would have to accept a deep discount,” says Aaron. “They were thrilled at the result.”

Another Independent agent, Jacob Stanton at Tuggeranong, recently sold a Richardson property for an unbelievable $75,000 over the advertised price despite the COVID-19 restrictions.

“Meredith and Peter had lived in the same home for 27 years. They were building their forever home interstate, had been looking forward to it for ages, and just needed to sell the Richardson property to make their dream come true,” Jacob said.

He scheduled a private viewing for potential buyers and listed the property at $625,000 to generate maximum interest.

“It definitely worked! The property went live at 4:00 pm Thursday. By 4:05 pm I had the first appointment booked.”

In fact, that buyer was so motivated they put in an offer on inspection for $685,000. Lucky they did because the online inquiries were flooding in. They had 28 inquiries in the first three days.

After negotiation with the buyers, a final price of $700,000 was accepted by the owners, the highest price achieved for a three-bedroom property in that region to date. Not surprisingly, the couple were thrilled.

“It was just an amazing result in the most difficult of times,” former owner Meredith said.

A recent property sold by Jonny Warren of Independent Inner North and City shows the power of social connection, both on and offline. Stacie and Andrew met Jonny at an open inspection a month earlier. Impressed by his professionalism, they asked him to appraise their home. The property was listed at $549,00 and then the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

“We were so worried. We thought, how is anyone going to see it now,” Andrew said.

Jonny took matters into his own hands. Armed with a video camera, he did a walkthrough, narrating the features as he went, and streamed it live across social media.

Thanks to some savvy advertising beforehand, there were plenty of interested people watching. The offers came in fast, and the sellers agreed on a price of $556,000, well above the asking amount. They exchanged the very next day.

“It’s been quite a roller coaster,” Stacie said. “We started off super excited, then we became worried when the pandemic hit. But Jonny worked so hard and got us a fantastic price. We’re just ecstatic.”

If you’re thinking of selling, right now is a surprisingly good time for it. Find out what your home could sell for with a free, instant, contactless property appraisal from the comfort of your own couch at Independent.

This is a sponsored article, though all opinions are the author’s own. For more information on paid content, see our sponsored content policy.

Start the conversation

Daily Digest

Want the best Canberra news delivered daily? Every day we package the most popular Riotact stories and send them straight to your inbox. Sign-up now for trusted local news that will never be behind a paywall.

By submitting your email address you are agreeing to Region Group's terms and conditions and privacy policy.