Popularised out of necessity during COVID, hybrid auctions are now proving an asset to agents looking to keep momentum going during a cooling market.
Property sales platform Realtair noted that with prices levelling, clearance rates easing, and the market beginning to favour buyers, agents have once again been feeling the benefits of using a hybrid model for auctions to lure in buyers who might otherwise be deterred by that method of sale.
Realtair chief executive and Real Estate Institute of NSW (REINSW) president Peter Matthews noted that in many ways, it’s fortunate that the industry was forced during the pandemic to get up to speed with tech integrations in the live sale format. It now means that agents can quickly pivot to this method if they feel like the property will perform well under auction but are concerned about putting buyers off.
“It’s the new reality. Not everyone is comfortable being a player in the theatre of an auction, but phone bidding is disjointed and bidders can’t follow the flow of the action. Hybrid auctions enable anonymity without compromising on the auction day experience, so people don’t miss out on the insights that experience provides,” Mr Matthews said.
“They also remove physical barriers as people can bid ‘online or on lawn’, meaning buyers have a broader selection and vendors benefit from greater competition.”
He noted that while the hybrid model is now well integrated into the industry, that doesn’t mean that the platforms used to facilitate sales can’t evolve, bringing in new benefits for everyone involved.
Additional levels of transparency, as well as privacy, are reportedly proving to be popular for buyers who could choose to bid “on lawn”, but favour the anonymity and orderliness that online provides.
Meanwhile, as the action is captured live, there’s no discrepancy in the bidding.
Such developments can save agents significant time on auction day by not only being able to streamline the process but also by having much of the financial arrangements preplanned. Once the hammer has fallen, a successful bidder’s details can be auto populated into a contract, meaning that a deposit can be processed in sometimes as little as 10 minutes.
Agents are noticing other benefits in cultivating online audiences, too, in being able to collect contact information from sometimes hundreds of attendees who are there to watch along – at least for now.
“Instead of having 150 people in the crowd and four registered bidders, you instead have potentially hundreds of people watching an auction online and all of them are now on your database,” Mr Matthews explained.
So for agents who are questioning if the current market conditions can support holding an auction, Mr Matthews said they resoundingly do; it’s just a matter of setting up your tech to allow for success.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Based in Sydney, Juliet Helmke has a broad range of reporting and editorial experience across the areas of business, technology, entertainment and the arts. She was formerly Senior Editor at The New York Observer.