Thinking about buying or selling a property off-market? Off-market properties are properties for sale that aren’t advertised to the public.
They offer benefits - like privacy for vendors, and potential savings buyers - alongside some drawbacks. Here’s everything you need to know about off-market real estate.
An off-market property is a property that has not yet been marketed to the public. It is effectively a pre-sale reliant on real estate agents and word of mouth instead of major real estate platforms.
Off-market properties can be harder to find for buyers, who will need to work with multiple buyer agents.
The low-profile nature of the sale may appeal to high-profile people. Off-market sales are also referred to as silent sales or hidden listings.
Whether it’s better to buy off-market remains debatable, according to Soho.
Nosy neighbours? Off-market listings can offer privacy. This makes them appealing to high-profile people or landlords with tenants.
Avoiding the masses can also be an effective way to filter out uninvolved buyers who could potentially waste one’s time.
Off-market real estate sales generally move faster, potentially saving on marketing costs as there isn’t a lengthy marketing campaign attached to the sale.
There are some drawbacks, though. Because the property isn’t on the open market, it may not attract the highest price possible.
Off-market properties sell for 2.6% less than listed properties, according to a PropTrack Report. This equates to $18,200 on a house valued at $700,000. Whether this is a loss or gain depends on if you’re talking to the buyer or vendor.
Homebuyers seeking to make a strictly off-market purchase will also need patience as stock can be harder to find.
Only looking at off-market houses for sale may be appealing to buyers in competitive markets due to the potential savings a vendor might offer in exchange for a quick sale.
Markets are slowing, though. The cash rate sits at a 10-year high of 3.1%. Meanwhile, auction clearance rates in the September quarter are down to 54.4% - a 15% decrease from the year prior - according to CoreLogic.
The sense of urgency associated with off-market real estate may not be worth the risk, particularly for first-time buyers.
Real estate is potentially the biggest purchase you will make in your life. It should not be taken lightly nor rushed.
Read more: A guide to buying your first home.
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