PROPERTY

Beat the spring real estate rush: your to-do list

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While the strength of the autumn market should continue through to early June this year, winter will bring with it few listings and low buyer numbers.

In June and July, auction volumes across Australia are typically below half that seen in autumn and just a third of the figures reported in the peak selling season - October to November.

Those looking to buy shouldn't feel disheartened if they do not purchase before the lull of properties and instead use the winter hiatus to prepare to purchase come the sunshine in spring.

As stock levels rise in early spring, buyers' attention returns to the offerings available.

But supply builds slowly: many vendors don't decide to list until spring has almost arrived.

This contrast between high demand and low supply means that buyers need to be ready before spring to get ahead of the game and buy early. The key to getting ahead - research and preparation.

Before you start your search process, you need to clearly define your parameters.

To help set these, ask yourself these questions: What is the purpose of the purchase - investment or lifestyle? What is my budget? What areas should I focus on? What sort of property should I be buying? Before you start you should seek the advice of a bank or mortgage broker and possibly a financial adviser.

With your objective and budget determined start on your desktop research.

Look into recent sales of properties that are of a similar age, location, and size as what you wish to buy. From here start to attend open for inspections, meet with real estate agents to discuss what you are looking for and attend as many auctions as possible.

When stock levels rise in spring, you will then be ready to assess the available stock and the performance of properties at auctions. If you have covered the market and understand where prices are being established, you will be in a position to hopefully negotiate or bid to buy the right property when it presents.

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