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Autumn Home Shopping

Sam La

Finding the perfect property isn’t always easy, and as the colder months approach, the number of homes available for purchase starts to subside. The reduction in house stock can swing the pendulum to favour the seller as buyers fight for the smaller number of properties.

If you’ve tried property websites, newspapers and real estate agents’ windows without success, here are five more unconventional strategies to try.
1. The letterbox drop

Most real estate agents use this strategy to win listings, but nothing is stopping you from taking the same approach.

There may be particular streets you like, or you’re looking for a specific type of property, try writing a personalised letter to individual property owners saying you’re interested in buying their home. If you’re lucky, you may spark the interest of someone who’s been thinking of selling. Sellers can be attracted by the prospect of a quick, straightforward sale. Make sure your letter includes your contact details and emphasises that your interest is genuine.
2. Knock on doors

Feeling confident? Try knocking on the doors of homes you’d love to own. Timing is everything with this strategy – you could meet a homeowner who’s keen to sell without the effort of an agency campaign. However, not everyone appreciates a face-to-face situation, so keep it nice and walk away if someone isn’t interested.
3. Look for quiet or off-market sales
Many properties are sold without any sales campaign because not all vendors want people to know their home is on the market. If a property is up for sale due to a relationship breakdown, financial difficulties or some other family complication, vendors may want to keep the sale ‘hush hush’.

The best way to access off-market sales is to remain in contact with local agents. Vendors often want an off-market sale to be quick, being top of mind with agents is important. You’ll want agents to think of you when they receive an off-market listing that needs to be sold immediately.
4. Search through expired listings

Websites such as allow you to search through old ‘for sale’ and ‘for rent’ listings. Using this information, you may be able to target properties that were passed in whose owners might still be interested in selling. Similarly, you may be able to find rental properties in the expired listings, and then contact the owners with a genuine offer to purchase.
5. Watch for garage sales

Garage sales can often be a sign that a home is about to go on the market. The homeowners might be trying to sell their clutter before listing the property for sale.

If you see a garage sale advertised at a property you’d like to buy, make sure you attend. Asking the homeowner if they plan to sell, could give you a head start on other home buyers – you could even make an offer before the property hits the market.
Keep in mind if you have success with any of these strategies, you’ll need to be ready to make an offer. Before you start letterbox dropping or knocking on doors, speak to Sam La, our Debt Advisor to arrange a confidential, and no obligation finance discussion.
For more information, please contact:

Sam La
Associate Director – Debt Advisory