With 2017 representing a year of consolidation in many real estate markets around the country, the benefits of a well-planned and well-presented auction will be even more important in the new year, according to a leading auctioneer.
Australian and international auctioneer James Pratt says that there are four key tactics for agents to increase volumes via auction over the next 12 months.
1. Understand the pre-auction
Mr Pratt says that it is important to know and fully understand the pre-auction phase.
“This is an important time to educate and provide market feedback to the vendors on price and what the market is saying about their property,” Mr Pratt says.
“In certain circumstances, if a market is softening, the pre-auction period may become even more important because this is when the prospect of selling prior to auction comes into play, where getting an early offer may be the best option for a good outcome, so it’s important your vendor is informed.”
Mr Pratt adds that the pre-auction phase is also a good time to get to know a vendor’s personality.
“The vendor’s personality type will determine how you communicate; rather than just providing email feedback, recognise what sort of communication your vendor responds to.
“For instance, understanding something as simple as whether your vendor is an analytical or visual person will help you know how to make contact, be it via phone call, text message, email or in person.
“No matter how you do it, communication with your vendor is vital in the lead-up to auction. Especially if you’re in a slightly softer market with reduced buyer interest, it’s important to keep the lines of communication open.”
2. Take a continuum approach
Mr Pratt’s second tip to agents is to use their auctioneer throughout the campaign.
“Make sure you have your auctioneer meet the vendor and discuss strategies during the pre-auction marketing campaign and also post-auction. With vendors potentially seeing less action on auction day, it’s important your auctioneer is providing value throughout the campaign,” Mr Pratt says.
“A call from the auctioneer to the vendor on a ‘sold prior’ auction is a great way for the two parties to interact and ensure the auctioneer is providing a service that justifies their fee.”
3. Set a test
Mr Pratt also recommends “road-testing” your auctioneer to see if they can sell in a soft market.
“More than ever, it’s important to source a good auctioneer — if the market continues to flatten out, a good auctioneer can negotiate after the auction, fill in the gaps at auction, re-sell and provide further assistance to ensure you achieve a sale.
“This is why it’s important to get to know a good auctioneer and develop a strong working relationship with someone you trust to get results in any kind of market.”
4. Do a broad sell
Mr Pratt says that agents should take the opportunity to further advertise their office’s services on auction day.
“At an auction, where you potentially have a crowd of interested buyers and sellers,” Mr Pratt says, “it’s a perfect forum to be creative and advertise your office through handouts, flyers and marketing face-to-face.
“Back this up with social media engagement and partner advertising opportunities, and you have the ingredients for continued success throughout the year.”