Selling A House in New Zealand

Selling a House with LJ Hooker

Selling a house in New Zealand can be a complicated mess. You don't want that. It’s always best to seek the guidance of an expert.

All LJ Hooker real estate agents are experts who can guide you through each step of the sales process from initial assessment of the property’s value, to marketing, to finalising the sale. However, the advantages of choosing an LJ Hooker agent don’t stop there!

Our local agents have a large database of potential buyers in your area. We can match buyers’ requirements to properties for sale no matter where your property is in New Zealand. This makes for a smooth and fast transaction with no time wasted!

Why Hire A Real Estate Agent to Sell Your Home?

Many sellers hope to save money by selling their home themselves. They reason that if they don’t have to pay a commission to an agent, they’ll keep the full sale price of the house. However, most people find that they end up spending more money and time and getting less for their home when they don’t use an agent for a number of reasons.

1. Accurate property valuations.

For one thing, real estate agents provide a professional appraisal of a home’s market value based on comparable sales to ensure the home is priced correctly. Homeowners who attempt to do a DIY appraisal don’t have access to a full comparable sales database. This can lead to an inaccurate valuation which loses potential money for the seller, or overpricing, which can make the home impossible to sell.

2. Agents are marketing experts.

Professional agents are also better equipped to market a home because we have a much wider reach. We market each home with a wide array of techniques and marketing tools that we have at our disposal. As professionals, we ensure that listings are accurate and that photos are of professional quality. In addition, we have the expertise and the information available in order to match potential buyers to a property, this saves time that might be wasted by unqualified buyers.

3. Valuable industry connections.

Another benefit of hiring a real estate agent is that a professional agent has valuable connections that the homeowner would not otherwise have access to. An agent knows who to call for a quick home inspection or survey, last-minute repairs. If any problems arise with the property, title, sales contingencies or any other issues related to the sale your agent will know who to contact. Without an agent, a homeowner will more than likely spend time and money getting these issues resolved.

4. We’re expert negotiators.

A real estate agent also helps by negotiating with buyers on the seller's behalf. LJ Hooker has local agents all over NZ, each agent knows the local market and will make sure that each home they are responsible for obtains the best price possible. Homeowners who work without an agent may not be aware that they can negotiate for more than the best offer they receive. An agent, however, can often get a better deal for the seller by negotiating multiple offers, seller concessions, inclusions and exclusions, and other aspects of the sale.

Finally, real estate agents help clients by overseeing the settlement process which includes negotiating the settlement and possession date.

Why Choose LJ Hooker To Help You Sell Your Home?

LJ Hooker has, over the last 90 years, become a leading name for real estate in Australasia. With local offices throughout New Zealand, we can reach out to potential buyers in any area. All of our agents are well-trained, experienced professionals who have a passion for real estate backed up with state-of-the-art technology that enables them to do the very best job possible for our clients.

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With LJ Hooker, you will be provided with realistic property value, designed to help you sell your home at the right price and within your timeframe. We will use our experience and our extensive network of offices and agents to attract buyers who are genuinely looking to purchase a home like yours.

If you are thinking about putting your home on the market, contact us today and schedule a free no-obligation appraisal, or, simply contact us if you have any questions.

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The Process of Selling Your Home

Once you’ve made the decision to put your house on the market, there are a couple of decisions you will need to make.

1. Assess Your Property’s Market and Set The Price

The first step to selling your home is to get an accurate appraisal. You can get a fairly accurate valuation of your house with up-to-date market information of recent property sales as well as houses currently up for sale within your locale.

Obviously, no two homes are exactly the same, so there may be differences in value based on location, amenities and any home improvements that have been carried out. A professional, honest appraisal is recommended as offering your property for sale at the right price will speed up the process.

At LJ Hooker, we provide a free, no-obligation appraisal service.

Just fill out the contact form to reach one of our agents who can then schedule an appointment to see your property at everyone's convenience.

An appraisal involves an overview of the property itself as well as any factors that may affect prices since the home was last sold. These factors may include the opening of a new school or business that would increase demand for housing in your area. These factors may also include changes that could devalue the property, such as a change in the tax codes or an increase in the number of rentals in the area. All of this information is used in helping establish a price that will get the house sold within your preferred time frame.

2. Choose A Method of Sale

While it’s essential to know your home’s market value and have a clear idea about what you expect to get from the sale, it is not always necessary to publicise the price. There are different methods of selling a house in New Zealand, some of which allow buyers to have more influence on the price based on competition.

Fixed Price

You have the option to set a fixed price. This method is known as selling by private treaty. A “fixed price” represents the amount of money you want to get for the house based on its appraised market value. The fixed price will also take into consideration what you paid for the property, what you put into it, and what you need to get out of it in order to buy something new. Buyers may attempt to negotiate a lower price, or they may even offer a higher price if there is competition for the property; however, a fixed price gives everyone a clear starting point for negotiations.

Price by Negotiation

Another option is “price by negotiation.” With this method, there is no baseline price given, but the agent is aware of the price the seller is expecting based on a market value appraisal of the property. A property with no advertised price may gain more interest from buyers who might otherwise be discouraged from making an offer on a high-priced property. With a greater number of interested buyers, there is also more potential for competition, which can drive up the selling price.

Selling by Auction

In a seller’s market, an auction can be a great way to generate competition and get the property sold quickly. An auction involves a brief and intense marketing campaign that concludes with an auction day. This allows the seller to know exactly when the property will be sold, assuming that the auction yields a price that the seller finds acceptable. While the property will not be sold below a pre-arranged bottom price, there is no limit to how high the bids can go.

Selling by Tender

Finally, properties can be sold by tender. This method is essentially a blind auction, in which prospective buyers make their best offer without knowing anything about other offers made. Rather than being limited to a single day, like an auction, a tender sale runs for a specific period of time. When the sale closes, the seller can choose among offers and negotiate a more favourable price, if desired. A private tender is perfect for sellers who are confident that the property can sell for a good price.

A seller can, of course, use more than one method of sale, especially if the first attempt doesn’t get the results they’re looking for. They may try an auction first and find that they don’t get the price they expect and so switch to a more traditional type of sale. However, the importance of basing expectations on a qualified appraisal cannot be overstated, since pricing a property too high will drive prospective buyers away and leave a house on the market longer than necessary.

For more information about the home selling process, read the Understand the Selling Process page.

Frequently Asked Questions about Home Selling

What is an exclusive listing?

With an exclusive agency agreement, you give only one agent the rights to sell your property. This may entitle the agent to be paid a commission if the property is sold during the fixed term of the agreement, even if you or another agent were responsible for the sale. An exclusive listing arrangement is most commonly used for the sale of residential properties.

What is the agent's role at an open house?

An agent's job at an open house inspection is to listen closely and observe attendees to gauge buyer interest and motivation. By engaging in conversation, the agent can learn more about a potential buyer's specific circumstances and requirements. This helps the agent to discuss the aspects of the property relevant to the buyer.

At the same time, buyers may need to view the property without pressure and talk about it with someone they have brought along. A good agent will be aware of this and only engage in conversation at appropriate moments.

Why should I be out during an open house?

Getting a buyer to picture themselves living in the property—sometimes referred to as 'mentally moving in'—is one of the most effective ways to generate serious interest.

For this to be achieved, it is essential that they feel relaxed and unhurried. Buyers do not wish to intrude on the current owner's space, so your presence can sometimes act as a deterrent for them to stay longer and continue to consider the property carefully. Let the agent run the open home, the vendor should leave the property.

Why is it important to declutter an open house?

Decluttering involves removing personal items as much as possible prior to an open house, in order to help the buyer imagine themselves living in the property.

A first impression often lasts and excessive belongings can make a home seem smaller, darker and less airy than it really is. Modern homes and decor tastes also tend to lean towards a more sparse presentation, while too much clutter can leave buyers with the sense that finding storage space might be problematic.

For more information, read our Tips for Property Sellers page.

How long should it take to sell my house?

Once your home is placed on the market, the length of time it takes to sell depends on a number of circumstances.

What does 'overcapitalised' mean?

The term 'overcapitalised' refers to a situation where you have spent more money on your property than you will recoup from the sale price.

While it is likely that any work you have done—such as landscaping or interior construction—will add value to the property, there is no guarantee that the full amount spent on these improvements will be seen in the eventual price of sale.

Can I sell my property while it is currently rented?

You are able to sell your property while it is being leased, but any potential purchaser must be told there is a current lease in place and that the property will not be sold with vacant possession. The tenant has the right to occupy the residence until the end of the lease term, unless both parties negotiate and agree to terminate the existing agreement.

In some cases, the fact your property has reliable tenants in place may actually be appealing to prospective investors.

Do I pay a commission if I sell the property myself?

If you sell the property yourself, whether or not you have to pay the agent a commission will depend entirely on the agreement you signed with them. In many cases, you may still need to pay the commission as, for example, it is likely that the promotional activities undertaken by the agent exposed the buyer to the property on the market.

You should talk to your agent about this issue, or alternatively take a copy of the agreement to your solicitor or conveyancer for advice.

Can I sell my house by myself?

It is not a legal requirement to use an agent to sell your property—you may elect to undertake the process yourself. However, there are many reasons why people generally engage the services of a professional to ensure the best price. Aside from the obvious expertise in marketing, negotiation and selling that an agent brings, most buyers also prefer not to deal directly with the seller. If buyers know you are not paying for an agent, they will usually expect to see the house price reduced accordingly.

In the end, selling a property on your own might lead to a lot of work and pressure, without actually saving any money or maximising the end sale value.


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