Ultimate Guide to Buying a property Sunshine Coast Qld in 2021

Ultimate Guide to Buying a property Sunshine Coast Qld in 2021

how to make an offer

Right now properties on the Sunshine Coast are selling fast. Very fast. With many properties not making it to the first open home. This is my ultimate guide to buying a property Sunshine Coast Qld in 2021.

I’ve spoken to so many buyers that are frustrated and disillusioned. With offers being made and them missing out. So here I give you my very best advice to give you the best opportunity to secure a property on the Sunshine Coast in the current market. 

 

DAILY ALERTS

You need to watch the market daily and know every day when a new property comes onto the market. The good news is you can do this automatically.

Realestate.com.au and domain.com.au allow buyers to create a daily alert. So every day when a new property comes onto the market in your price range and area an email will arrive in your mailbox. The first thing you need to do is set this up, so the moment something comes onto the market you are alerted. 

IMMEDIATELY MAKE AN OFFER

Making an offer does not legally bind you to buy the property. 

If you get an email for a property you like in your mailbox, immediately contact the agent and make an offer. Do this via email, SMS and a phone call. What the ? Making an offer and not even seeing the property first ? Yep. Making an offer does not lock you into a purchase. Yet. By making a sight unseen offer, will bring you to the attention of the sales agent and someone they need to pay attention to. Right now agents are swamped with enquiry, many buyers are still just “looking”, so this will ensure the sales agents can see you are serious. I know, it’s hard to get your head around. 

Kath, Amber & Byron Miller breakfast in Mooloolaba

WHAT TYPE OF OFFER SHOULD YOU MAKE?

Right now I am helping Amber, my 21 year old daughter buy her first property. So far at the time of writing we have made offers on 6 properties and missed out on them all. Which is fairly shocking considering I’m in the industry. Ha. We have not been trying to get a “Bargain”. Our offers have been very high. Just not high enough. 

Your offer needs to be as good as it can possibly be. So my recommendation is this ; 

30 day settlement
7 day finance ( yes 7 ) 
7 day B&P clause OR 7 day due diligence clause
10 % deposit  
Offer amount will depend on the price advertised. 

At the time of writing a property was advertised in Buderim for $419,000. So we made an offer of $425,000 the day it came onto the market. $6,000 over the asking price. We were then told other buyers also wanted to make offers so we had the chance to make one final offer. All offers would be submitted to the seller for them to choose one.  This is called multiple offers. We increased our offer to $465,000. We missed out and it sold to someone else for $475,000. 

So while this was advertised for $419,000. It sold way above that.  That is just one example of six properties we have missed out on.

 

HOW TO MAKE AN OFFER

First email, text and call the sales agent to explain you would like to make an offer. When you email and text the offer, make sure you include all your conditions. Full names that would be buying and your solicitors details. 


So it might look like this ; 

buying property sunshine coast type of offer
Houses in Aura Sunshine Coast
how to make an offer
Happy hour Cotton Tree Caravan Park looking towards Maroochydore
how to make an offer
Amber Miller riding a horse at Noosa North Shore
Hello John,

Can I please make an offer on 5 Braemar Rd, Buderim. My full details and offer is. 
Byron John Miller
0435 493 661
$499,000
10% deposit
7 Day due diligence
7 Day finance
30 Day settlement

 

Solicitor is 

By The Rules Maroochydore

Gordon Cavanagh

0400 670 190

gordon.cavanagh@bytherules.com.au

 

The sales agents will either have you complete a letter of offer or sign a sales contract. 

OFFICIAL SALES CONTRACT

Best practice is a sales agent should write your offer up on an official sales contract for you to sign. This is what I have always done & still do. Going to the effort of having your offer written up on a sales contract shows everyone this is serious. 

When you do this the contract suggests you have your solicitor look through it. Which yes is a good idea. But solicitors kill deals. They will probably tell you to reduce your deposit from 10% and increase your finance clause to 21 days.  Don’t do that. I will say it again. Don’t do that. 

When you sign a sales contract you are protected by the finance clause, you are protected by the B&P clause OR due diligence clause. You are also protected by the 5 day cooling off clause. But a buyer should never pull out under the 5 day cooling off clause as the seller can charge you around $2,000 for doing this.

If you do have your solicitor look at the sales contract you would also need them to do it and get back to you fairly fast, or you may miss out on the opportunity. 

buying property sunshine coast sales contract
Romeo the Spoodle in Point Arkwright
letter of offer
A man and his snake at The Boat Shed in Maroochydore
LETTER OF OFFER

Many sales agents now use a letter of offer. I don’t and never will. I can see why they do though. If they have 10 people wanting to make offers, that’s 10 sales contracts they need to fill out. A letter of offer is a fast simple non legally binding piece of paper that you write your offer onto. As a buyer this is great for you, because it does not lock you into anything. But as a buyer a sales contract is better. 

MULTIPLE OFFER FORM

If you are making an offer and other buyers would like to make an offer at the same time, legislation states that a sales agent needs to inform all buyers if their offer is part of multiple offers. This just needs to be done verbally. REIQ best practice is to have all buyers sign a letter of offer form, to ensure buyers really understand what this means. So why is it not legally required? It is a very good idea.  Which is why I do this. Many buyers do not really understand how multiple offers work. In fact I’ve recently learnt that many agents don’t understand either. 

HOW DO MULTIPLE OFFERS WORK?

In Qld a sales agent is not allowed to negotiate with multiple buyers at one time. The sales agent presents all offers to the owners & the owners then chooses which offer they like the most. This does not always mean the best price. A buyer might offer less but have better conditions. Like no finance. 

I’ve recently discovered many sales agents don’t realise the seller does not have to choose the highest offer. They can choose a lower offer with better terms and choose to negotiate with that buyer. Which is what I usually do. Yes I will say that again. A seller does not need to accept the highest offer. Which most real estate agents don’t even realise. 

Recently my daughter Amber made an offer of $499,000, 14 days finance, 30 day settlement, no B&P. The agent said they accepted a slightly higher offer of $510,000 but with a longer finance term as that buyer did not have finance approved. Unfortunately what this sales agent does not realise is he would have been better off choosing Amber’s offer and negotiating with her, asking we pay more because Amber finance is pre approved. 

multiple offers
Combi Van meet up Noosa River

PROPERTIES SELLING OVER THE LASTING PRICE

If a property is advertised for $800,000 it’s very possible it will now sell for $850,000. I would suggest you initially offer $800,000 and only if the agent informs you it will be multiple offers do you then need to improve your offer and conditions to the best you possibly can. 

buy property sunshine coast pre approved finance
Kath & Byron Miller Sunrise on top of Mount Coolum

PRE APPROVED FINANCE

You need to get your finance pre approved. If you try and make your finance term longer than 14 days you will struggle to have an offer accepted. But also if by the 14 days your bank needs a few more days you can request a 5 days extension which is usually granted. 

Best practice is a sales agent should write your offer up on an official sales contract for you to sign. This is what I have always done & still do. Going to the effort of having your offer written up on a sales contract shows everyone this is serious. 

When you do this the contract suggests you have your solicitor look through it. Which yes is a good idea. But solicitors kill deals. They will probably tell you to reduce your deposit and increase your finance clause. Don’t do that. When you sign a sales contract you are protected by the finance clause, you are protected by the B&P clause  OR due diligence clause. You are also protected by the 5 day cooling off clause., But a buyer should never pull out under this clause as the seller can charge you around $2,000 for doing this.

PRICING WITH CONTACT AGENT

I know. It’s frustrating for buyers. Agents do this because the market is moving so fast we are not really sure what it will sell for. I recently sold a property where we told the owners to expect a sale around $750k and it sold for $830k. Another we told the owners around $575k and it sold for $625k. 

In the realestate.com.au search you can fine tune your price for example to $500,000 and properties that are contact argumentatively on your rough budget will show up. But consider this. The agent may think it will sell for $500,000 but buyers may be prepared to pay $550,000. So don’t beat up the agent. 

buying property sunshine coast pricing with contact agent
Stand up jet ski's wave jumping Twin Waters North Shore
buy property sunshine coast choosing a mortgage
Elton John live at Kawana Stadium

CHOOSING A MORTGAGE

Not all mortgage brokers are the same. Ones that have a high volume of loans get preferential treatment for having loans pre approved. If you are talking to a mortgage broker that is not keen to get you a pre approval or gives you excuses from the bank that’s a red flag you need to find a better broker. 

So a good question to ask is how fast can you get me a pre approval and once I have it can they handle a 7 days finance clause. 

Pete Solomon from Mortgage Choice o the Sunshine Coast can do all this. He is unbelievably busy so he might take a week until he can have a phone interview with you. Which is why you need to jump onto this now. 

Another reason to get a pre approval is you are about to be shocked how much information they are going to need from you. ID, bank statements, pay slips, copies of leases, electricity bills, loan statements. Maybe bank valuations of other properties you already own. The list is long. 

BUYING AT AUCTION

One of the disadvantages of buying under the multiple offer process is all the buyers making offers are flying blind. They have no idea what other offers are being made. They might miss out by just $5,000. 

With a pre approval you are then able to bid at auctions. Some of the advantages of bidding at an auction is less competition. Instead of competing with 10 buyers who all have finance clauses you may only be competing with 3 buyers as they are the only ones pre approved. Auctions are transparent. You get to see what the other buyers are prepared to pay and you can then make a decision if you are prepared to pay any more. So instead of missing out by $5,000 with the multiple offer process, you may be able to secure the property by just paying $5,000 more. I was recently speaking with a client who bid at an Auction in Buderim and to her surprise and delight was the only bidder there. 

Something that is very challenging with Auctions though is pricing. You really need to do your own research around what has just sold in the area that is comparable. In Qld it’s illegal for real estate agents to guide a buyer on price. But they can supply a buyer a list of comparable sales. So you should ask for that. The challenge here though is if you are looking at sales from 3 months ago whatever they sold for then they are now worth more. 

buying at auction
Ted the Groodle Bunnings Maroochydore
buying property sunshine coast with tenant in place
Jasmine Miller Stand Up Paddling Twin Waters North Shore

BUYING WITH A TENANT IN PLACE

This is really misunderstood. A tenant is protected by their lease. So if their lease expires in 10 months time when the property sells they can not be kicked out. If the lease has expired you only need to give the tenant 1 months notice to vacate. 

What I am seeing for the first time ever is buyers are buying properties they want to live in with tenants in place and just waiting for the lease to expire, I’ve never seen this before. But even Amber is looking to do this. 

WHAT IS HAPPENING IN MARKETING RIGHT NOW?

It’s out of control. Properties Amber is looking for in Buderim less than 12 months ago were selling for $370k. In Feb 2021 properties in the same complex were selling for $440k. And now in Sept they are selling for just over $500k. 

It’s the same all over the Sunshine Coast. A town house that sold last year in a Cotton Tree for $440,000 just sold for $565,000 less than 12 months later. 

WHEN WILL THE MARKET SLOW?

I’m just a real estate agent. I really am not qualified to answer. But I assume while interest rates stay low the Sunshine Coast will continue to boom. Then add to that the Olympics in about 10 years time, plus on top of that the incredible infrastructure and limited land. It seems the Sunshine Coast is still very undervalued compared to other areas of Australia. Covid has created a massive push for people that have been thinking of getting out of the cities to make the move now. I assume once borders open there will be another spike as interstate buyers can finally come up and see properties in person again.

buying property sunshine coast market boom
Sunset Noosa River

IN SUMMARY

Yes I would suggest you buy now. If you buy in Sept I assume it will be worth more by Dec. Get a pre approval and be prepared to compete with many other buyers. So act fast. 

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