Nick's Weekly Blog


Nick Lord - Director and Licensed Estate Agent
NICK LORD - DIRECTOR & LICENSED ESTATE AGENT


21st September
September Market Update
 
It is pleasing to see the Geelong real estate market remaining buoyant and defying Melbourne and interstate trends which have seen a downturn in auction clearance rates and median house prices. The median house price across the Greater Geelong region has risen 12.2% this year to date compared to Melbourne's .... click here for full article.
 


14th September
Spring Auction Action

The Geelong Advertiser’s front page yesterday really summed up the buying sentiment in Geelong this past weekend. “Fast and Furious”was the headline with an accompanying photo of our auctioneer Shaun Carroll and in particular reference to our auction at Unit 2/6 Cortland Drive, Highton.

6 bidders competed to secure this 3 bedroom/double garage brick veneer unit with more than 50 bids .... click here for full article.
 
 


7th September
Spring Has Sprung!

Spring is here and the long, dark, cold months of winter are finally behind us. We’re excited as Spring always marks a period of heightened activity, of purpose and of optimism.  Our sales team are busy listing property whose owners have been holding off on selling. So look out for plenty of new listings within these pages over the next several weeks.  Click here for full article.



31st August
The Buzz Around Spring

There is no mistaking the fact that Spring is nearly upon us. Whether it be the blossoms starting to flower or the warmer weather we just enjoyed this past weekend, there is a definite buzz in the air. Activity here in the last couple of weeks has increased significantly, with clients who have been holding... click here for full article.

Wishing you an enjoyable Spring!
 


24th August
The Secret to Our Success
 
As we celebrate our 25 year anniversary it is a good time to reflect on our longevity in what is an extremely competitive industry and to pinpoint what it is about Maxwell Collins that has been the key to our success over these years.  Click here for full article.

 

17th August
Preparing for Spring Selling

The spring selling season is fast approaching and experience shows that vendors who invest in going that "extra mile" with presentation will usually achieve a quicker sale and sometimes, a higher price. Property styling is one way to improve a home by creating a WOW factor that will leave a lasting impression.  Click here for full article.
 


10th August
The Role of Technology in Real Estate

It seems that everywhere we look technology is taking over our lives. From Google devices in the home that can turn on heating, music and lights to mobile phone apps that can conjure up food to our doorstep, give us directions or FaceTime someone on the other side of the world... click here for full article.
 
 

3rd August
Celebrating 25 Years

2018 marks the 25th anniversary of Maxwell Collins Real Estate which came about by a merger between agencies run by Peter Maxwell and David Collins. It has been wonderful to watch the company evolve over the past 2 decades, to have welcomed staff who have come and gone in that time .. click here for full article.
 


27th July
Spring Selling - Just Around the Corner
 
There's only just a month of winter left and then Spring will be upon us. This is the time when traditionally the market gears up and a rush of properties are listed for sale. If you have plans to sell by public auction in Spring ..click here for full article.

 
 
20th July 2018
Spotlight On - Mortgage Lending
 
If you are thinking of buying and need to borrow to finance your purchase it is advisable to be aware of the tightening of lending criteria by all major lenders over the past 2 or 3 years, fueled in part by government initiatives and more recently, by the royal commission ..... click here for full article.


13 July 2018 
Choosing an Agent - The Do's and Dont's
 
So you’ve made that all important life changing decision to move house. To either upsize, downsize, perhaps to a new location, or to a new chapter in your life. So how do you choose an agent to sell what is more often than not the most valuable asset you will own in your lifetime?.... click here for full article.

6 July 2018 
Social Media for Business

The last 10 years has seen the emergence of Social Media as a powerful tool for marketing businesses online. Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter - these words form part of the common vernacular now, to such a degree that to ignore these omnipresent, all conquering
tools would be to court disaster for any business.  But where does... click here for full article.


29 June 2018
2018 - The Half Way Mark

It’s almost impossible to believe that we are at the half way mark of 2018, with the school holidays upon us again and winter already a month in (bringing with it those foggy mornings and iced windscreens).

The market jumped out of the blocks in 2018, starting the year... click here for full article.


15 June 2018
Land Estate Update

Land is still continuing to sell at a rapid rate and we are seeing unprecedented demand for blocks in both Ashbury Estate in Armstrong Creek and Bay Breeze Estate in St Leonards.


Demand remains steady at Highton Ridge Estate.... click here for full article.



8 June 2018
The Property Profile Group

We are members of the Property Profile Group, a collective of top agents spread throughout both regional Victoria and Metropolitan Melbourne. Membership in the PPG gives us a unique insight into the best practice of some of Victoria’s most successful agencies, through regular meetings.... click here for full article.



1 June 2018
The Key to Success


One of the most important aspects to running a successful business is ensuring that your staff enjoy their work and are made to feel valued. It is always with a sense of satisfaction that we mark the anniversary of the commencement date of every staff member with an acknowledgement and gift, the satisfaction obviously deriving from the fact that the staff member concerned has dedicated another year of his or her working life to our team here at Maxwell Collins.In the same way, it is paramount to ensure that every individual we have dealings with here, whether they be landlord, tenant, buyer, seller, commercial client or supplier knows that he or she is valued and has been given the best level of service, advice and respect at all times. Our business relies on people coming back. Wanting to deal with us again because they have dealt with us before and been pleased with the result. So when we ask “How can we assist you?” know that we will go out of our way to ensure we do the best job possible for you.


25 May 2018
Not Your Typical Morning at Ashbury


It was certainly a busy morning at Ashbury Estate, Armstrong Creek last Saturday and one not for the feint hearted. The forthcoming release of Stage 12 was much anticipated and we had quite a waiting list for the 16 blocks comprising this stage. In the interests of fairness it was decided the best course of action was to sell the blocks on a ‘first come first serve’ basis to the site office in Boundary Road last Saturday morning. A couple of dedicated buyers braved the chilly conditions and stayed the night and were rewarded with first and second in line as the dawn broke. They both secured their preferred block. As lunch time approached, 15 of the 16 blocks were sold and there were smiles all round as the 15 buyers contemplated their future home site, neighbourhood (and neighbours!).

The last 6 months has seen land selling at an unprecedented rate, which has put significant upward pressure on prices. If you are looking to build in the short to medium term, our dedicated land agent Simon Braybrook (0438 027 272) is here to help you secure the site of your next dream home.



11 May 2018
Autumn Market Update


After a red hot market during the last 2 years with record prices being attained in some suburbs and reserves being smashed significantly at auction we are now starting to see some transitioning in the Geelong area to a less volatile real estate environment, where pricing will likely level out and maintain at more customary levels.  Some suburbs we anticipate will still perform beyond expectation for the short term which gives anyone thinking of selling a good window of opportunity to capitalise on the tail end of what has been an extraordinarily strong market.

Winter always provides a good opportunity to sell as the competition is significantly less before the spring selling season gets underway, meaning there are more buyers for each property on the market, which under normal market conditions means a better sales result.

If you are thinking of selling, we would be happy to assist you with our expert advice and tips for maximising your sale price.



4 May 2018
Three Out of Three


We had a very successful weekend last weekend, with the three properties going to auction all sold. Spanning across Belmont, Bell Post Hill and St Albans Park, we have some very happy vendors and purchasers.

With Mother’s Day looming on Sunday week we though it would be a good opportunity to run a competition on our Facebook page, with the prize of a lovely hamper going to the lucky winner. If you would like to spoil your mum with French champagne and an assortment of other goodies, find us on Facebook, like our page and then look out for competition details to be posted in the next day or so.



27 April 2018
Hope Bereavement Care


This week our team attended the 2018 Hope Charity Sports Breakfast at the Geelong Football Club where all profits went to Hope Bereavement Care who assist those in the Geelong community who have lost a loved one suddenly. Their services include running bereavement support groups, providing grief counselling and strategies for dealing with grief, through to providing information to help families and service providers. We are pleased to support such a worthy cause that impacts so many who suffer in silence but who can benefit by knowing that they are not alone in their grief.

If you are one of those who have been touched by tragedy you might consider contacting Hope Bereavement and perhaps find some comfort in their compassion and caring.  If you are looking for a worthy charity to support that directs your hard earned donation to supporting the Geelong community then you might like to visit their website at https://www.bereavement.org.au.


20 April 2018
Our 70 Year Anniversary

It has been an exciting journey for Maxwell Collins Real Estate over the 70 years of membership in the Geelong Chamber of Commerce. From our inception over a hundred years ago as Gurr Collins and Davies, to our merger in 1993 with Maxwell Real Estate to become Maxwell Collins Real Estate, we have strived to lead the way in providing the best level of real estate service in Geelong and to evolve with technology to offer an unsurpassed experience to our many clients over this long journey.

It has been an important component in our ongoing success to have been a member of the Geelong Chamber of Commerce and to have had the backing of such a long standing respected organisation, whose goals so closely mirror our own - namely to pool the knowledge and expertise of Geelong's leading business people with the aim of establishing Geelong as a thriving economic city with flourishing businesses and cutting edge technology. This in turn attracts investment to our city, both from government in their decisions to locate the head offices of such major organisations as the NDIS, Worksafe and the TAC here, and from individuals who have identified Geelong as the best place to live and raise a family.

We look forward to servicing the real estate needs of the Geelong community well into the future together with our ongoing association with the Geelong Chamber of Commerce. We can't help but wonder what the next 70 years has in store for Geelong, but if the first 70 is anything to go by, we envisage Geelong as a major commercial hub, leading the way in health, education and best business practice.




13 April 2018
Short Term Market Predictions

The market has shown no signs of slowing in 2018 with records being smashed in severalsuburbs across the Geelong region. Our own auction at 8 Huntingdon Street, Newtown last weekend sold for almost $400,000 over the reserve, much to the delight of the owners.

We can’t help wonder when the ‘tipping point’ wil be reached ie. when the market might cool
and prices either stabilise or dip slightly before continuing on a less steep upward rise. Market analysts have been predicting for the past 15 years that the real estate bubble will burst but it hasn’t happened, nor do we think there will be any significant drop in real estate prices over the long term but we can’t help thinking that the major upward trend in pricing in suburbs such as Geelong West and Herne Hill can’t be sustained for too much longer.

So the question is... if you are thinking of selling, do you sell now and take advantage of this red hot market, or wait and possibly see a slight cooling of prices in the short to medium term. Whatever your real estate goals we are here to help and would be happy to discuss all your options with you. Just give us a call.


6 April 2018
School Holidays Again

Term 1 is done and dusted and the school holidays are here again. It seems like only yesterday that school started up for 2018.If you find yourself stumped for ways to keep your children engaged and active these holidays, there are some fantastic activities being run by Central Geelong as part of their “Storyfest” initiative, which runs from the 3rd to 15th April, 2018.Activities include Dazzling Dan the Magic Man, Fairly Tale Crafts, Fairy Forts and Elf Abodes, story readings and signings, drawing workshops, super hero activities and all sorts of associated arts and crafts activities. There really is something for all age groups.For further information visit www.centralgeelong.com.au/storyfest where you can download the full program.
Happy holidays!



30 May 2018
A Very Quick Word

Have a wonderful Easter with your family and friends and stay safe on our roads.


23 March 2018
2018 - The Year So Far


It’s almost impossible to believe that round 1 of the AFL starts this weekend and Easter is next weekend. The year is flying by and the team here has barely taken a breath since we reopened after Christmas.It’s been an exciting few months. We have had a 100% strike rate on our auction properties so far in 2018, meaning that they have all either sold under the hammer or within a few days of the auction. This is a huge vote of confidence from both buyers and sellers for the auction system - in particular in the integrity of our price indicators leading up to the auction and the transparency of the auction process itself.

Another fantastic aspect of 2018 has been our rate of land sales. Blocks in Central Rise Estate in Clifton Springs, Bay Breeze Estate in St Leonards, Highton Ridge Estate in Highton and Ashbury Estate in Armstrong Creek have been selling at a truly phenomenal rate, often with stages selling out before any marketing has officially commenced or within the first few days
of marketing. This is a strong indicator of the economic growth of Geelong and its desirability as a great place to live. We know it and it seems the rest of the world is finally catching on.


16 March 2018
Geelong's Hot Property Growth

If you missed the article in the Geelong Advertiser last Saturday regarding Geelong’s housing market, it is worth reiterating some of the main points covered - the most significant being that Greater Geelong had the strongest growth for a regional city in 2017, with the median value for a house increasing by a substantial 14.6% (source CoreLogic).  Whilst this is good news for existing home owners it makes it just that bit harder for first home buyers to get on that first rung of the property ladder, particularly in traditionally popular suburbs such as Belmont, Highton, Newtown, Geelong West and East Geelong. This is why it is important to look a bit further afield when buying for the first time. That perfect first home might be in Hamlyn Heights, Herne Hill, Newcomb, Grovedale, Waurn Ponds or Armstrong Creek or some expectations might need to be lowered to get into your preferred suburb.

Whatever your real estate goals for 2018, we are here to help. As well as marketing existing homes and units we have a good range of affordable land for sale, from as far afield as St Leonards and through to Ashbury Estate at Armstrong Creek. We welcome your enquiry and would be delighted to assist you make your real estate dream a reality.


9 March 2018
The Next Hot Suburbs

The media is reporting that the real estate market in Melbourne is slowing. Some auction properties are being passed in and pricing has reportedly plateaued during this current quarter. Pleasingly we are seeing no evidence of this trend here in the Greater Geelong region with all our auction properties this year either selling under the hammer with strong competition or within 48 hours of the auction.

Traditionally strong auction suburbs such as Belmont, Geelong West, East Geelong and
Newtown have been joined by Herne Hill, Hamlyn Heights and Newcomb in showing incredibly strong results under auction conditions.
With modern quality homes in good suburbs such as Highton, Grovedale, Waurn Ponds and Armstrong Creek we can’t help but think that these will be the next suburbs to really thrive in terms of sales results in the short to medium term. With demand for existing homes so strong, the future for real estate in Geelong has never been so bright.


2 March 2018
The Last Word on Auctions

How much is enough deposit to pay on the day of auction? Most properties that are offered for sale by auction require the terms to be 10% deposit on the signing of the Contract of Sale (directly after the auction finishes) with the balance to be paid in the time frame stipulated by the owner (usually 30, 60 or 90 days).

So if you are intending to bid at an auction you should have the full 10% of the highest amount
you are prepared to bid available for payment on the day of auction. This could be by means of a bank cheque or money order, or by direct electronic transfer from your smart phone or other device into the nominated trust account of the agent.

Without the deposit, the contract is missing an integral component. A home owner, having
committed to the time, energy and not to mention the expense of an auction campaign is entitled to expect that at the conclusion of the successful auction he or she will have an enforceable Contract of Sale signed by all parties and with the full deposit paid.

It is always a good idea to discuss these sorts of issues with the agent if you are intending
to bid at an auction in order to have total clarity as to what is expected.



23 February 2018
An Auction Hat Trick

It was really exciting to see that the 3 auctions we conducted last weekend all sold under the hammer with spirited bidding by several interested parties. Set on a huge 1,058m2 block and partially renovated,183 Mt Pleasant Road, Highton saw solid bidding between several interested parties and a very satisfactory outcome for our vendor. Further south in Grovedale, 8 Beringa Avenue, an attractive and well maintained brick veneer home also sold under the hammer to a very happy purchaser and in the waterfront precinct a 1 bedroom apartment at 6/61 Brougham Street sold under the hammer for
another satisfied buyer and seller.

From what we can see, the buyers are out there in droves. Homes newly offered for sale start generating enquiries within minutes of being published to the internet. There is definitely a lack of quality homes and units on the market at the moment and those that are listing their properties for sale are definitely taking advantage of the increased competition between buyers and seeing some extraordinary results. Despite persistent talk of the ‘real estate bubble’ bursting we see no evidence of that happening in the short term.


16 February 2018
Negotiating After Auction

As a follow up to last week’s auction terminology article here is some further discussion of what occurs when a property is passed in at auction. There are 2 possible scenarios:-

1. The property was passed in on a vendor bid.
2. The property was passed in on a genuine bid which didn’t meet the vendor’s reserve.

So what happens next? The starting point of the answer is found in rule #7 of the rules for the conduct of public auctions, published in schedules 1-4 of the Sale of Land Regulations 2005. Rule 7 states: 'If a reserve price has been set for the property and the property is passed in below that reserve price, the vendor will first negotiate with the highest bidder for the purchase of the property'. If, however, the pass-in occurs on a vendor bid what is the position? In this instance, it is most likely that negotiations would proceed with the person who made the highest bid prior to the final vendor bid that closed the auction. This is in line with the intent of rule #7 mentioned above. However, this does not preclude anyone else becoming involved, so always ensure that you have made your interest clear to the auctioneer or real estate agency staff at the conclusion of the auction to ensure you are placed well for post-auction negotiations.


9 February 2018
Explaining Auction Terminology

It is a growing trend currently that most homes are offered for sale by public auction. It’s timely therefore to give a brief explanation of some of the common terms used during the auction process.

Estimated Sale Price - what your agent believes that a willing, but not anxious buyer would pay for the property and is recorded on the sales authority. It is determined using their skill, knowledge and comparable sales evidence.

Passed In - This occurs when the highest bid at the auction does not meet the vendors' reserve price. The highest bidder generally has the first right to negotiate a sale after the auction.


Passed In on Vendors Bid - This means that the last bid was made by the agent on the vendors' behalf. This shows that demand at the auction has fallen short of the vendor's expectations.


Reserve Price - At the 'heart' of the auction process is the reserve price. The reserve price is the minimum price that the vendor wants for their property. The reserve is typically set by the vendor
the day of, or the day before the auction.


2 February 2018
Land Buyers - Register Your Interest

We are currently experiencing unprecedented demand for land with recent stage releases in our estates Highton Ridge (Highton), Bay Breeze (St Leonards), and Ashbury (Armstrong Creek) selling out within a week or two of hitting the market. It is becoming commonplace for a large proportion of available blocks to be sold before any official marketing commences.

A soft campaign is usually implemented first which involves calling prospective buyers on
our database, advising them of the release and inviting offers. If you are not registered you may miss out on the perfect block on which to build your dream home. This will be particularly true of Phalaris Park in Lovely Banks. The first 6 stages of this estate proved extremely popular, selling quickly and the next stage will not be released until later in the year. We are already compiling an extensive list of prospective buyers.

If you have any interest at all in securing a block in the next stage of Phalaris Park or our
other estates we strongly recommend contacting our office now with your contact details.


26 January 2018
The Buyers Are Out There


2018 has started much in the same way as 2017 finished, with buyer demand outstripping supply significantly.Buyer enquiry is still very strong and numbers through open houses are buoyant. For example - we listed a 3 bedroom brick veneer home in Cole Street, Herne Hill and opened it for inspection for the first time last Saturday and then again on Sunday. We had a total of 63 parties inspect that property over the 2 days, which is a phenomenal number for what is essentially a conventional brick veneer home. Most of these numbers were genuine buyers, not just neighbours and lookers.

If you are thinking of selling now would be a great time to beat the rush of listings that will hit the market once school has started and normal routines recommence. With so many buyers looking to buy right now and not much available on the market, you could capitalise on these circumstances and achieve a very healthy price for your property - perhaps one well in excess of what you might think your home is worth.

Give us a call to discuss your real estate needs. We are here to help.


19 January 2018
Our New Year's Resolution


By now most of us are back at work and the Christmas/New Year festivities are a distant memory as we gear up to launch into another successful year. Some of us will have made New Year’s resolutions and broken them already. Others won’t have bothered based on past patterns of breaking them fairly quickly.

Here at Maxwell Collins we have a collective resolution to offer the best real estate service in Geelong. To draw on our longstanding experience as one of the few fully Geelong owned and operated real estate agencies in the region to surpass our competition and offer you those value added extras that have become such an anachronism in modern business practices. To personalise your experience to reduce the stress of buying or selling a home and to treat you as a client ought to be treated - as our most important asset.

Whatever your plans or resolutions for 2018 we wish you every success. If we can assist you with any real estate matter during the course of the year please contact our office.


1st December
2017 The Year That Was


It’s hard to believe we are in December already and Christmas is a few short weeks away. 2017 has seen some major changes in the real estate industry which has impacted how we do business.

The first is the introduction of an additional layer of buyer protection which requires us to provide a Statement of Information for every property we market. This document includes the price of the home, the median house price for the suburb and 3 recent comparable sales.

The second is the increased use of video imagery and drone imagery in the marketing of properties. These give the prospective buyer a far better look at the property in question and a useful overview of the neighbourhood and its proximity to key locations, amenities and landmarks.

The third is the introduction of the $20,000 first home owners grant for new homes bought or built in regional Victoria. This serves to entice buyers into regional Victoria whilst at the same time stimulating growth in the building industry.

All positive initiatives to benefit buyers of real estate in 2017 and going forward.


24th November
Maxwell Collins Christmas Windows


We are pleased to present our Christmas Window display for 2017 which is viewable as of now and up until the end of December. With 3 magical windows lit up to represent iconic Christmas themes there is something for all ages to enjoy.

So if you are planning to bring the family down to the waterfront to see the Christmas Tree why not stop at our offices at 55 Myers Street, Geelong first to get you in the Christmas spirit.

Special thank once again to Peter Maxwell who is the driving force behind this display every year. If you enjoyed the windows and would like to spread some of your own Christmas cheer this year, donations to our Bethany Giving Tree (in our front reception area) would be most appreciated.


17th November
Getting It Done For Charity


Maxwell Collins is once again well representated at this year’s Run Geelong event, which raises much needed funds for Barwon Health’s Paediatric Rehabilitation Services. It’s a great opportunity to get out with family and friends in the fresh air and walk or run the 6 or 12km course. The event is being held this Sunday 19th November. If you haven’t registered to take part, it’s not too late. You can register here at http://runaustralia.com.au/location/geelong.

Our support of Give Where You Live is ongoing throughout the year but at Christmas we give focus to Bethany Community Support by being involved in their Giving Tree Appeal. We put up a Christmas Tree in our front reception and invite staff, clients, suppliers and members of the general public to donate a Christmas gift to help families in need this Christmas capture the Christmas cheer we take so much for granted.

As part of our strong commitment to support worthy causes in the Geelong community we have been pleased to pledge our help of late to the Salvation Army Family Christmas Celebration, the Cancer Council Victoria Geelong Relay for Life and the Osborne Park Association Christmas Carols event by the provision of prominent advertising signage.

Finally, we have once again created our Christmas Windows, which will be turned on tonight (Friday 17th November). We encourage you to bring the kids along to our office at 55 Myers Street, Geelong after dark to view our magical display of Christmas themes and lighting.


10th November
Looking for a Character Home?


If you are looking to buy a character home we have some great ones on the market right now.

For the renovator we have 17 Orchard Street in East Geelong, a lovely Victorian weatherboard home comprising 3 bedrooms, good sized back yard and single garage. This is neat and tidy and could be lived in now and renovated later.

311 Autumn Street in Newtown has just come onto the market for auction in early December. It is full of character with lovely street appeal, beautiful manicured gardens, 3 bedrooms, study and single carport. Situated close to the CBD, this one really is a Newtown classic.

50 Richmond Street, East Geelong is also going to auction in early December. It is a character Californian Bungalow style property, very neat and well presented, comprising 2 bedrooms and single garage. It too is ripe for renovation and would ideally suit first home buyers and investors.

For a real piece of history you can’t go past 33 Maud Street, Geelong. This impressive and imposing Victorian villa was built circa 1880 and incorporates all the best period features combined with the comforts of modern day living. It comprises 3 bedrooms and double carport and its city fringe location will ensure it gets plenty of interest.

For more details on these properties or any others please refer to the listings on our website. If we can assist you with an inspection, please do not hesitate to call.



27th October
What is the Due Diligence Check List

If you are actively searching for a property to buy chances are you have seen or been given a Due Diligence Check List. Before you buy a home, you should be aware of a range of issues that may affect that property and impose restrictions or obligations on you, if you do buy it. The Due Diligence Checklist aims to help you identify whether any of these issues will affect you. For the last 3 years (since October, 2014), all sellers or estate agents must make this checklist available to potential buyers of homes or residential property.

Sellers, conveyancers or estate agents must:
1. ensure copies of the due diligence checklist are available to potential buyers at any open for inspection
2. include a link to this webpage (consumer.vic.gov.au/duediligencechecklist) or include a copy on any website maintained by the estate agent or the seller (if no estate agent is acting for the seller).
3. include a copy in the Section 32 Statement which form part of the Contract of Sale.

The checklist mentions a variety of important points such as fire and flood risk, land boundaries, planning controls, owner corporations and buyers rights. To view the complete checklist visit the link cited above in (2).


20th October
2017 Auction Window Closing


We are now half way through Spring and the end of the year is fast approaching, with some stores already displaying Christmas merchandise, the early appearance of which seems to polarise the community (mostly against it).  If you are thinking of selling your property in 2017 with auction being the most appropriate method to maximise your ultimate sale price, all the marketing would need to be in place and ready to go by mid November at the latest (with a standard 4 week auction campaign and the last appropriate auction date being 16th December). This means you really should be looking to talk to an agent about selling within the next 2 weeks.

Missing the 2017 auction window means that your property would not come onto the market until early January, with a scheduled auction date around the end of January or the first week in February, 2018. A standard settlement period is 60 days, which would push out the finalisation of your sale into April, 2018, almost 6 months from now. So if you would like your sale to be effected in 2017, why not give one of our experienced sales agents a call to capitalise on this busy spring market. They can advise you on the estimated selling price of your home, the best method of sale and provide tips on presentation to maximise the appeal of your property. If you wait until January, your best buyer may be at the beach!


13th October
It's Time for Outdoor Entertaining


Is your outdoor area in need of some urgent action? With spring in full swing and summer fast approaching, now is the time to concentrate your efforts on revitalising your entertaining areas. Here are some simple tricks to update and invigorate without blowing your budget!

Sweep and Spruce
The weather over winter can wreak havoc with outdoor areas. Sweeping away the dust and dirt is a must…but sometimes not enough. Decking can often use a bit of TLC. Decking oil is simple to apply and provides a deck with the natural protection it needs to see it through the hot summer months. If you've got pavers or tiles, then a simple clean with a high-pressure water cleaner is sure to do the trick.

Outdoor furniture
To update tired outdoor furniture, you can't go wrong with cushions and covers. Outdoor sofa settings are instantly revamped with new covers and bold colours will complement wooden frames, and stand out against the backdrop of your garden.

Lighting
Evening entertaining is lovely on a hot night. Spotlights are useful if focused on the BBQ area and candles and lights that dim for your seating areas will create a more soothing and relaxed ambience. Citronella candles make short work of any mosquitos without the zzzap!

Remember: Keeping it simple is often the best and small changes can create a big impact!


6th October
The Spring Market is Hotting Up!

We are now into October and the weather is becoming a bit warmer, the AFL and NRL seasons are done and dusted and the last term of the school year starts next week. How quickly 2017 is flying by.

September has seen no lessening of buyer demand for properties, in fact the reverse is happening - numbers through open houses are steadily increasing the further into Spring we get.

First home buyers are well represented with the abolition of stamp duty (conditions apply) and the government incentives to build or purchase a new home. Investor interest is also strong in homes and units across all suburbs and price ranges. Combining that with steady ongoing demand from builders, developers and existing home owners and the result has seen more interest in properties coming onto the market and a noticably lesser time on the market. In particular, affordably priced homes in the northern suburbs - Corio, Norlane, North Geelong - are selling very quickly, often before any marketing has commenced, the demand is that strong.

All of this, together with interest rates still at traditionally low levels, has the ultimate effect of creating upward pressure on pricing and producing some very pleasing results for our vendors. You may be surprised at what your home is worth. If you are thinking of selling, of upsizing, or downsizing, or would just like to crunch the numbers for the purposes of forward planning, why not give one of our experienced sales representatives a call. Any one of them would be very pleased to assist you.


30th September
Unlocking the Equity in Your Home

With interest rates at historical lows, property remains a financially rewarding investment in the long term with houses doubling in value roughly every 10 years. Astute investors do their research, locating well positioned properties in areas where there has been proven rental demand and lifestyle value.

If you are in the market for an investment property, having an existing mortgage, especially if it is for the home you live in, is highly regarded by lenders. It also provides the opportunity to use your existing equity as a deposit for your investment property.Equity - the difference between the value of your property and the amount you owe on your mortgage - can be a powerful tool for building real estate wealth.

To access any existing equity will involve refinancing your mortgage. Why not take the opportunity to look at your mortgage options and compare rates.If the amount of interest you pay on your investment loan, together with property maintenance costs, is greater than the income you receive (rent), your property is considered to be negatively geared and this difference can be used as a tax deduction.

If you are looking at refinancing to create an investment property portfolio, always base your loan repayment calculations on conservative figures to ensure you can cope comfortably with an interest rate rise of two to three per cent above the current rate.



23rd September
The Choice to Move or Renovate

As families grow, needs change. Here are some tips to ensure your next property decision is the right one.

1. Have your home appraised- obtain an accurate understanding of the current market value of your home. We should be your first port of call - we know your suburb inside out. Be sure to also ask us how much your home would be worth in the current market if it was renovated.

2. Establish renovation costs - speak to a builder or two so you know what you'd be up for should you decide to stay where you are. Remember, it's important not to overcapitalise when renovating. You should be able to increase the value of your home through renovation by more than the amount of money you spend on the project.

3. Look at the cost to purchase a renovated property - you may find that for the same amount you plan to spend on renovating, you can buy a larger, more comfortable home that will provide more capital gain potential in the long run.

4. Be honest with yourself = are you up to the task of renovating your home? Tackling a renovation is a big job - many people love it but if you're not a fan of choosing tiles and taps, living in one room for six months or liaising endlessly with builders and tradespeople, maybe renovating isn't for you?


16th September, 2017
Something for Everyone This Spring

The Spring selling season has well and truly kicked into gear with our auction schedule filling up rapidly for the remaining weeks of September and well into October.

All buyer demographics are covered in our forthcoming auction campaigns. We have great investment options including an entry level unit in Highton, an very affordable home in Corio, a neat unit in Francis Street, Belmont and homes in Grovedale priced between $350,000 and $450,000 which would also equally suit first home buyers. We also have a character home in East Geelong which is about to commence marketing and at the higher end of the price spectrum we have just commenced marketing a large impressive home with spectacular views in Wandana Heights and a totally unique property near Deviation Lookout in Newtown (also with magnificent views) which would lend itself to re-development into a prominent Geelong icon.

These are just a sample of the properties we have coming up. If you are looking to buy, please don’t hesitate to contact one of our sales team and if you wish to sell we would be happy to assist you with a market appraisal and a competitive, professional service.



9th September, 2017
Our New Website

To coincide with the start of Spring we have just launched our new revamped website at www.maxwellcollins.com.au. It’s a much more vibrant, clean and user friendly interface and works equally well across all devices, both hand held and desktop. The rationale behind our new site is to be an information portal. Rather than just displaying properties for sale and lease, we hope to be able to assist our clients and the public at large with a wide range of information across the broadest spectrum of real estate issues and to provide a forum whereby you can ask any of our sales and leasing staff any real estate question, at no cost and with no obligation.

Whether you are a first home buyer concerned about the auction process, or you are looking to build your first home and want to discuss the purchase of land we can help. From stamp duty rates and concessions, to tips on presenting your home for sale, our aim is to assist you.  We can help you with median house prices for your suburb and comparable sales data upon which to base your future planning, or to find the best tradespeople to assist with maintenance on your home or investment property. If you have any question at all for us, please don’t hesitate to ask and if you are thinking of selling why not visit our website and read some of our reviews from past vendors and purchasers and watch one of our successful auctions.


2nd September, 2017
Spring Is Here!

Finally!  Winter is behind us and we can look forward to some warmer weather, a bit of sunshine to break up the grey and gardens starting to bloom.   In addition to which, Geelong has made it into another finals series which adds to the positive vibe around the town.

To coincide with the start of Spring we have just launched our new revamped website at www.maxwellcollins.com.au.  It’s a much more vibrant, clean and user friendly interface and works equally well across all devices, both hand held and desktop.  The rationale behind our new site is to be an information portal.  Rather than just displaying properties for sale and lease, we hope to be able to assist our clients and the public at large with a wide range of information across the broadest spectrum of real estate issues and to provide a forum whereby you can ask any of our sales and leasing staff any real estate question, at no cost and with no obligation.

Whether you are a first home buyer concerned about the auction process, or you are looking to build your first home and want to discuss the purchase of land we can help.  From stamp duty rates and concessions, to tips on presenting your home for sale, our aim is to assist you.  We can help you with median house prices for your suburb and comparable sales data upon which to base your future planning, or to find the best tradespeople to assist with maintenance on your home or investment property.   If you have any question at all for us, please don’t hesitate to ask.


26th August, 2017

Own Your Own Home This Spring!

The spring property market is fast approaching, and if you are looking to purchase a new home or investment, here are few tips to prepare you for success.  The key to a successful home purchase is using research and facts - not emotions - to make the right choice. The process may require patience, but here are three keys steps to helping you make the right decision:

1. Decide on your budget
Looking carefully at your finances will determine how much you can afford to spend on a home. Look at your income, assets and current debt level.  If your lender says you can repay $1,200 a month, but you know you are struggling with a rental of $1,000 a month, you probably know that you don't need any more than you already have.

2. Research
Spend the time to find the home you want. Start by checking out neighborhoods. You should consider the schools, parks, public transport and lifestyle advantages.  When choosing between homes, look at the size, number of bedrooms and baths, design and amenities. Decide what your "must haves" are and what the "nice to haves" are.

3. Negotiate the right price
Don't get caught up in having to get the home and lose sight of how much you can afford. Recent sales in the
area will give you a fairly accurate guide to the home's value. If you are bidding at auction, make sure you have attended a few before you bid yourself.  This will give you the confidence to bid up to your set limit.


19th August, 2017

5 out of 5...!


It was a big weekend of auction action here at Maxwell Collins last Saturday with 5 out of the 5 properties put up for auction selling under the hammer. Auctioneers Duncan Skene, Shaun Carroll and Peter Maxwell were kept very busy with the bids coming thick and fast and a resulting aggregate of $290,000 over reserve prices achieved.

58 Barwon Boulevard, Highton, 3 Dundas Street, Herne Hill, 12 Hilltop Street, Herne Hill, 2 Torquay Road, Belmont and 105 Maud Street, Geelong all saw good crowds turn out to see each home knocked down under the hammer to 5 ecstatic buyers.

These exciting results show that the market is continuing to be very strong and we anticipate that it will get stronger still as we approach the Spring selling season. Our auction calendar is beginning to fill for September and with a minimum of 4 weeks marketing as a lead in to an auction, now is an ideal time to consider whether you should take advantage of this red hot market in Spring.

If you would like a market appraisal, please call one of our sales team. There is no obligation and you might be quite surprised by the estimated price.


12th August, 2017
Prepare Now For Spring Selling


The spring selling season is fast approaching and experience shows that vendors who invest in going that "extra mile" with presentation, especially in a tougher market, usually achieve a quicker sale and sometimes, a higher price. Property styling is one way to improve a home's prospects for selling as fast as possible for the highest price. It also allows the vendor to create a 'wow' factor in the home that will leave a lasting impression upon buyers.

Property stylists are flexible when it comes to the sellers needs. They can simply take a look at a property and incorporate furniture and artwork that blends well with the abode. Alternatively, a full end-to-end property styling make-over can be undertaken.

Here is a list of some of the tasks property stylists can advise on:

1. Home and Garden Maintenance - including weeding and rubbish removal
2. Handyman services - re-hanging a door, replacing a window frame etc
3. Styling - declutter, reposition, supply rental furniture and matching accessories
4. General Ideas - offer those final special touches

A good indication of the average price for property styling is somewhere between $2000 - $4000. And any good stylist should be happy to work within a set budget. Ask us how we can help you best prepare your home for sale.


5th August, 2017
Update on Land

We are very pleased to announce the launch this week of Stage 7A of Phalaris Park Estate in Lovely Banks. Located in a quiet pocket just off Matthews Road and very convenient to all established amenities and the ring road, the previous releases have proved very popular, all selling out within several weeks of launching. We have already had strong interest in Stage 7A so we implore any prospective buyers to be quick, as we anticipate this stage will sell out as fast as the previous ones.

The next stage at Bay Breeze Estate at St Leonards has just been pegged with lot boards going up in the forthcoming days. Stage 1 has sold out so here is the next opportunity to secure a block in this popular seaside hamlet.

Stage 10B at Highton Ridge continues to sell steadily and we are not far from releasing the next stage in this development, which will be Stage 3 Riverside. Stages 1 and 2 have been sold out for some time, so it is exciting to be able to offer Stage 3 in the next month or so.

Ashbury Estate in Armstrong Creek is selling rapidly, with our most busy week for enquiry yet. There are only a few blocks left in Stages 6 and 7 currently for sale.

Don’t forget the government regional grant of $20,000 for first home buyers who build a new home (conditions apply).


15th July, 2017
The Next Boom Suburbs.....?

The last couple of months has seen some extraordinary sale results achieved in suburbs such as Herne Hill where for instance an unrenovated 2 bedroom home sold for $587,500 ($127,500 over the reserve) to a prospective owner occupier. This trend is coming about through buyers being priced out of the traditionally more expensive Newtown and Geelong West and therefore looking to more affordable options further  afield.

With that in mind, it is interesting to consider what $587,500 would buy you in say Highton, Grovedale, Waurn Ponds or Armstrong Creek and the answer is (in most instances) a large modern 4 bedroom and double garage home with no renovation required (likely even brand new in Armstrong Creek). So with the large disparity between the relative bang for your buck in these suburbs compared to Herne Hill and Hamlyn Heights, it is worth posing the question. Are these suburbs undervalued? Will the next trend see a boom in pricing in Highton, Grovedale, Waurn Ponds and Armstrong Creek? With demand across the board exceeding supply and the abolition of stamp duty for first home buyers (conditions apply) the answer seems a very likely yes.


8th July, 2017
Thoughts On the Year to Date

It’s startling to realise that we are already half way through 2017. The end of the financial year has been and gone, Term 2 school holidays are well underway and it’s already Round 16 of the AFL season.

The first half of this year has been incredibly busy in terms of real estate. The demand for homes continues to rise in a red hot sellers market, which will be made even more hot by the abolition of stamp duty for first home buyers (meeting a fairly broad criteria) by introducing a whole new tier of buyers into the market. Analysts predict that this will put even more upward pressure on house prices. So if you are in the fortunate position of being a home owner now might be a good time to reflect on your goals for the rest of the year. Whether it is to sell, upsize, downsize, invest or retire, we can offer you the best advice to ensure your decisions are the right ones for a successful 2017 and peace of mind going forward.


24th June, 2017
....and More on the Market

House and unit sales are running hot and we are often selling property before any official marketing commences. Hardly a day goes by where we don’t hear prospective buyers lamenting the fact that there is nothing out there for them to buy. Some of the buyers on our list have been looking to purchase for 12 months or more, unsuccessfully. With very limited property on the market across Greater Geelong generally and motivated buyers competing fiercely at auction to buy what is available, we cannot envisage a better time to sell.

Spring is traditionally thought to be the best time to sell. If sellers wait until then, they are competing with all the other properties coming onto the market at the same time, which will dilute the buyer pool for each property and possibly impact the sale price. This is why now is such a great time to sell. Supply is limited, demand is through the roof, competition for homes is at an all time high, first home buyers are competing with cashed up investors and the prices we are obtaining right now are reflective of all those factors.

If you are thinking of selling, don’t wait until Spring. The time to sell is right now.


17th June, 2017
The Market - No Signs of Slowing

In my 17 years in real estate it is hard to recall a time when the market has been so red hot. Properties in sought after suburbs are literally flying out the door as demand continues to exceed supply, resulting in some amazing results in suburbs such as Herne Hill, Hamlyn Heights and Newcomb, which have historically produced more conservative results.

We are seeing a lot of disappointed buyers at auctions, who continue to search for that perfect property which keeps eluding them as they are outbid week in and week out. Winter also traditionally sees a drop in homes coming onto the market, which decreases the amount of properties on the market resulting in an upward push in prices.

So what does this all mean for you, the home owner? It means that your home may well be worth far more that you think it does. Far more than any prevoius appraisal you might have had and far more than comparable homes in your immediate vicinity which may have sold more than 12 months ago. It means that now is about the best time to sell that we have seen. If you are thinking of selling, we would be happy to provide you with a no obligation opinion of the value of your home.


10th June, 2017
An Astonishing Result in Herne Hill

Last Saturday, our Sales Manager Eugene Carroll and our Auctioneer Shaun Carroll took a 2 bedroom home at 6 Hilltop Street, Herne Hill to auction.  The reserve was set at $460,000 after consultation with the vendor in the days prior to the auction and on the day a good crowd of about 60 turned out for the auction.  When the bidding hit $460,000 the property was ‘on the market’ and was to be sold. What no one
could foresee was that fierce bidding between 3 determined buyers would push the eventual sale price up to $587,500, a whopping $127,500 over the reserve price.

As you could imagine, the vendor was absolutely blown away by the result, particularly bearing in mind the home is only 2 bedrooms. The eventual buyers purchased it for renovation as their own future residence.

This exceptional result is a clear indication that buyers who are priced out of Geelong West are now prepared to pay significant dollars to live in neighbouring (and burgeoning!) Herne Hill.


26th May, 2017
Professional Training & Development

At Maxwell Collins our philosophy is to be at the cutting edge of real estate. This means we are heavily committed to continual professional training and development for our sales team so that we can offer you the highest level of real estate services. Whether this involves the latest digital techniques for marketing your property, or perfecting our skills for negotiating the best possible price for your property our sales team are always looking for ways to make our clients’ real estate experience the most seamless and stress free possible.

Our next major training undertaking is the annual Australian Real Estate Conference 2017, the most prestigious training event in the country, being run on the Gold Coast this weekend and involving the best speakers in the real estate industry from Australia and all over the world. Our sales team are looking forward to the event and can’t wait to be back next week to implement new strategies and techniques to assist our clients to the best possible outcomes. It’s always pleasing to see the extra level of enthusiasm and commitment that this sort of training immediately brings to our already talented sales team.