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Treak Real Estate Property Update: October 2021


Welcome to the Treak Real Estate Property Update: our regular round-up of news from the Sydney and national property markets, as well as what’s happening right here at Treak!


Wow, there’s a lot going on!


Have you had your first post-lockdown haircut? Have you enjoyed the sights, sounds and smells of a restaurant, or the simple pleasure of a morning coffee in a café? With the lockdown easing, I’m sensing a real – if cautious – sense of optimism around Sydney.


A lot has been happening in the real estate market too. 15 weeks of lockdown hasn’t slowed it down one bit, with a lack of quality supply being the main driver behind the surging prices. There are signs that this is changing though – last weekend 611 properties were taken to auction, considerably more than 455 the weekend before. This trend should accelerate as the lockdown loosens, although only time will tell.


In an effort to pump the brakes on property prices, APRA has recently made it harder to get a loan. They increased the ‘serviceability buffer’ for new mortgages from 2.5% to 3%, reducing the maximum borrowing capacity for the average borrower by around 5%.


Helping you secure your home


It can feel a bit hopeless trying to buy a property in such a hot market, as you’re constantly outbid at auctions, and you wonder whether the agent’s price guide is really that accurate. We heard this a lot from our clients, which is why we’ve decided to help.


We LOVE helping a client buy their dream property – it’s perhaps our favourite part of the job! Our knowledge of the property market and the buying process can save you thousands of dollars and hours of hassle, as many customers have already found out this year.


One recent client had been searching for a property since January. It took us a little over a week to find and buy her dream home. We secured an off-market property in the Inner West for another client, and the vendor was so happy they didn’t have to pay to advertise or style the property, they gave our client a reduced price! Last week, an investment property that we secured for a client settled, and we leased it within two days of settlement. All in all, when our clients are happy, we’re happy!


We’ve offered up some tips on understanding price guides below, but if you’d like more help, we’re ready when you are. Remember, with prices only rising, the longer it takes you to secure a property, the harder it will be, and the more you’ll pay!


Hot tips to understanding Sydney price guides


Are you frustrated by inaccurate agent price guides? Don’t worry, you’re not alone! But where do these estimates come from, why are they needed, and how should you read them? Read on to find out.


Inaccurate price guides mean buyers might struggle to find a property within their budget, leaving many of them deflated and confused. So untrustworthy have these guides become, that many buyers are adding 10%-20% to the advertised price and increasing their loan amount with their bank, so they don’t keep missing out on properties on auction day.


I used to work as a property valuer before becoming a real estate agent, and price estimations come a bit more naturally to me, which is why many of my clients ask for my help in understanding the accuracy of price guides. If you find yourself in a hot real estate market, determining values can be extremely difficult, especially if you haven’t bought before.


How is a price guide calculated?


To understand price guides, we first need to understand where they come from.

At the very beginning of the selling campaign, when the selling agent and the vendor (seller) sign the agency agreement, the agent is required by law to provide an estimated selling price for the property. The price may be a single figure, let’s say $800,000, but more commonly it’s a price range that spans 10% of the lower value, like $800,000-$880,000.


This estimated selling price is based on recent comparable sales in the local area, features and fixtures, and market conditions.


Why is the price guide often lower than the sale price?


When the agent markets the property on Domain and realestate.com.au, they will usually quote the lower end of the supplied price range, as it acts to draw more buyers in and increase competition for the property. This means that even in a stable property market, a property advertised at $800,000 that sells for $880,000 is still within the seller’s expected price range.


Right now, however, we’re in a hot market. These conditions can see properties selling 10%-20% above the price guide, meaning a house advertised at $800,000 could reasonably sell for $880,000 to $960,000.


How do you avoid getting burnt? It’s important that you do your due diligence, and avoid relying solely on the price guide. That’s where the professionals come in – we have both market knowledge and smart tools that help us to understand what the true value of a property is, and what you’ll have to pay to secure it.


How can I avoid falling into the pricing trap?


Professional help aside, there are a few other things that you can do to get a better idea of price guide accuracy:

  1. Look at realestate.com.au and Domain’s ‘Sold’ section, and see what similar properties are selling for. Remember however that these listings don’t tell the full story – what appears to be a bargain could have something wrong with it that can only be found by inspecting the property.

  2. When searching for on market properties on realestate.com.au and Domain, always filter using the lower end of your budget. This can save you a lot of time and energy chasing properties that will end up being out of your price range.

  3. Inspect, inspect, inspect. Visit as many open inspections as possible, and get an understanding of why certain properties sell for certain prices. While private inspections might make this difficult at the moment, the loosening of lockdown restrictions will hopefully make it easier in the coming months.

Ready to buy? We’re ready to help!


Property can be a confusing and often overwhelming business. Our aim at Treak is to make it easier, and maybe even fun! If you’re excited by life’s possibilities as we come out of lockdown, and are hoping to secure your dream property, be sure to get in touch, or just reply to this email.

Now go grab yourself a delicious freedom coffee!


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