Don't pretend you know property's value

Agents shouldn’t pretend they know the value of a property and instead should be a conduit through which the market tells the seller what their home is worth, an independent auctioneer and real estate trainer has said.

“We [agents] don’t know what properties are worth,” Jason Andrew, director at Jason Andrew Auctioneers, told Real Estate Business.

Mr Andrew stressed that agents shouldn’t be estimating the value of a property, nor should they attempt to force a price on a vendor.

Instead, agents should see themselves as the conduit for the market, giving the vendor “an overwhelming tide of information” to help them gauge the true value of their property.

To help get this value across to the vendor, agents must generate large amounts of traffic to open inspections; ensure offers are in writing; and constantly relay up-to-date market information to the vendors, including stock on market and how similar properties are performing.

He said agents generally have four to five weeks to relay buyer price expectations to vendors, who continue to overestimate their property’s value by around 20 per cent in some markets.

How to move stock in tough markets will be a key focus of a presentation Mr Andrew will deliver at the forthcoming Advanced Real Estate Learning (AREL) 2012 conference in Sydney and Melbourne. The AREL 2012 Annual Forum will be held in Sydney on Thursday, May 31 and in Melbourne on June 1.

Mr Andrew, who conducts training sessions with agents as far afield as New Zealand, said he’s noticed an increasing number of NSW and Victorian-based professionals seeking out advice from their counterparts in Queensland.

They wanted to learn from agents who had survived some of the hardest market conditions on record, he said.

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