A Civil World. Off-topic discussions on a variety of topics. > Trans-Atlantic Knowledge Exchange

Buying/Selling houses

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oz diva:
Here in Melbourne we mostly buy and sell houses by public auction on the street in front of the house. The auctioneer puts on quite a performance. The bidders and most of the neighbours and other interested bystanders stand around the street and the auctioneer points out the legalities and the attributes of the house and the neighbourhood. Once bidding starts, it's a good idea not to wave at a friend or scratch your nose.

Usually if bidding is stalling, the auctioneer will refer the bid to the vendors, disappearing inside for a bit, then reappearing and announcing that the property is now on the market (or maybe not) and hopefully the property will be sold or passed in. If the latter happens they negotiate with the highest bidder. Even if a resolution is still not found, the property is usually sold during the next few weeks.

Here's one in action http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BaBYXIe8INg&feature=related

They're fun to go and watch if there's one nearby and we often take overseas visitors to see one for a bit of local colour.

We've bought both our houses this way and sold one. It's nerve wracking, we nearly had a friend buy our old house. When we were buying our current house we nearly had it $20,000 less, but at the 3rd call someone else piped up and we started off again. I like it, because it's all out in the open and mostly you buy a house for what it's worth. It's hard not to get too emotinally involved though. You have to set a firm limit and stick to it.

How is it done where you are?

Larrabee:
Wow that's really interesting, what an exciting way to buy a house, although I don't know if I could handle the stress!

Here in the UK, there are a few ways.  You can sell property at auction but this tends to be a last resort if you can't find a buyer and they sell for very low prices generally.  The auctions are public but not outside the house!

Generally, houses for sale go on the books of estate agents, they advertise them and potential buyers arrange viewings through the agent.  The agent works entirely for the seller.  Generally, sellers show their houses themselves, not the agents, unless the house has been repossessed or is empty for some other reason.

When an offer has been made and accepted (the asking price is just a guide for starting negotiations) both parties engage a solicitor and then the process can take anything from a few weeks to months depending on how long the 'chain' is!

oz diva:
I forgot to say that the house is open for viewing for about 3 weeks prior to the auction. Usually twice a week for about an hour. The real estate agent should be there for the viewing.

Thipu1:
That is interesting and very different from the way things are done here

Normally here, everything goes through a real estate agent even if the place has been foreclosed and is in the possession of the bank.  there are homes listed as 'for sale by owner' but most people find that way too much trouble. 

oz diva:
Perhaps I didn't explain it well enough, but the auction process is managed by the real estate agent.

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