oc | Wednesday 22nd January

We’re out of the blocks with 87% clearance rate and Bidderman at 3. Early days but WOW!

42207-2AHarcourtStreetHAWTHORNEAST-2(Above and below) 160 people witnessed this architectural masterpiece (working from a low base to a state of brilliance – Steve Domoney Architecture) sell under the hammer for $4,160,000. James Tostevin and 3 bidders. Google our James Home Rating – 2a Harcourt Street, Hawthorn East to read our detailed thoughts.

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Excuse me what did I read above, James 3, James Million Dollar Clearance Rate 87% and Volcanoes (4+ Bidders per auction) win the day at 4 in 10 auctions. Is this the same market that I’ve been reading about in the newspapers? Is this the same market the stockmarket boys and economist girls are telling me is certainly tanking. Is this the same……. No, this probably is the same market that we had last year, but with a lot less stock than late spring 2015 and of course, the traditional February Pep in the Step.

This appears to be a continuation of last year’s strong market (that eased from ballistic to strong under large amounts of stock and Chinese buyer pull back in late spring 2015). So strong start – but its early days and it is February.

But hey lets not speculate, lets not do the same as the “experts” (make stuff up) – let’s be scientific – let’s analyse over the next three weeks, the true state of the $M+ market, right now.

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Yeah, let’s do it – so this week and the next two weeks we at James Buyers Agents and Advocates, will cover 100 auctions to bring you the true state of our early Inner Melbourne $M-plus 2016 Home Market.

The 100 homes will be for the most part randomly selected (sometimes we just take what our auction reporters can fit in) from across our areas of speciality  – Inner East and  Melbourne.

The stats will put an end to all the speculation and tell us unequivocally how the $1M+ Melbourne market has started in 2016, after we saw a distinct easing late 2015. When we say easing late 2015, we mean the market was still very strong, just not as ballistic as the May 2015 market and it almost always eases at year’s end, under massive stock offerings – sorry repeating myself aren’t I.

Please note: We can tell you how the $1M-3M+ market is going (through our auction analysis) – but this is very different from the $4M – $10M+ market which, for the most part, is not under the glaze of the public auction. We provide buyers/clients of such properties with a specific market report, via our individual James private client $4M+ briefings (Phone 9804 3133)

Do we need to know how the market is?

It’s not a 100% answer; but the market is a group of opinions and that group is made up of individual opinions, which we all form in part by our individual interpretations of the group’s opinion (the market). Catch 22, hey! In other words it is important because human beings instinctively want to know what others think, which in turns forms part of the actual decision making process.

It is market opinions, like waves, that drive human opinions and decisions and behaviours, which are reflected in prices in a direction up or down.  I’m not saying that it is critical to a good decision, but it is human behaviour.

Elliot Gill knocks down a tri-level townhouse at 54 Murphy Street Richmond under the hammer for $1,601,000 - 3 bidders

Elliot Gill knocks down a tri-level townhouse at 54 Murphy Street, Richmond under the hammer for $1,601,000 – 3 bidders

So how will we really know the state of the 2016 market?

What are our James and Advocates guidelines?

We use a big sample size (100 over 3 weeks).

We use a three-indicator method for Market Strength Assessment of the results of that sample.

1.

We still look at the traditional clearance rates (what is happening now). That is, number of homes that have been bought before 6pm on the Saturday night, as a percentage of the number of homes on offer. We prefer our James sample rather than a Melbourne wide sample for two reasons;

a)    In poorer market times too many agents who have poor results, don’t declare their results to the REIV thus distorting the figures – eg making clearance rates artificially high.

b)    The Melbourne wide sample is actually too big and too broad (for our Inner Melbourne market), as REIV changing clearance rates move like a big ship over months. By the time you can see a trend, the market may actually be moving in a another direction again – you are always in delayed time (months) relying on these stats. Taking a smaller sample does have an issue in that it opens itself to the anomalies of a week or our selection bias; however over a few weeks it is a very accurate “canary in the goldmine” of market shifts.

2. Bidderman

We also look at James Bidderman, the measurement we invented over a decade ago, that really tells you the future. Yep, this bit of hocus pocus is actually the best stat going around for telling you the state of the future market. It’s not hocus pocus; it’s simply the number of auctions we reported on, divided by number of bidders we counted.

In 2008 Bidderman was hovering around 1 (meaning there were few left over bidders after each sale) and the market was falling. In 2007 and 2010 and early last year 2015, even on big Bidderman was circling 3, meaning that for every successful buyer there were two unsuccessful ones (what we call wounded underbidders). In the future these wounded underbidders would go harder, thus pushing prices up.

If we only had one measurement we would choose Bidderman over clearance rates, as you can have an artificially high clearance rate for several months with skilled agents working an ever decreasing number of uninformed bidders into paying the prices sellers wanted; thus showing a high clearance rate in a market that is actually weakening.

Of course blind analysis of Bidderman on a very small number of auctions can see one or two very strong auctions distort Bidderman.

3. Stock Levels

And finally stock levels. This is like our control check. If we are on very shallow stock numbers, then you can have a false sense of market depth – just like an ever shrinking net, pushing the caught fish into a smaller area of space, making it look like the intensity is greater than it actually is.

We are going to look at our stock level indicator this year, as we have had a fair bit of bracket creep (rising prices), but in the past, weekends consistently over 80 to 100 in Inner Melbourne $M+ have indicated good stock levels and over 150 (Super Saturdays) massive stock levels.

February 2016 will be the 2016 pointer and May 2016 (traditionally with large stock numbers) will be the confirmation test for 2016.

4 Peppin Street Camberwell - Bang, 5 bidders. Bought under the hammer. Duane Wolowiec

4 Peppin Street Camberwell – Bang, Volcano 5 bidders. Bought under the hammer $2,537,500. Duane Wolowiec

James Buyers Agents and Advocates Market Definitions

Strong and Rising Market

Bought properties above 70 out of 100 (70%+) and Bidderman above 2.0 indicate a strong 2016 start and the market has the potential for .

The first week has blown this to the Schizerhausen to quote a well known football commentator from the past.

Flat and Levelling Market

Bought properties 60 -70 out of 100 (eg James 3 week clearance rate 60-70%) and Bidderman 1.5 to 2.0 bidders per auction indicates we are in a flat market and that could fall or rise.

By logic these stats, if they happen over the Feb 20, 27 and Mar 5 weekends will show that we are in a falling market as these stats, if they occur, would be a big change from most of last year.

Weak and Falling Market – which would surprise us

If over the next three weeks our sample of 100 auctions sees less than 60 properties bought by 6pm on the day, with a Bidderman of less than 1.5 then we would be in a significantly falling market and 2016 will have started very poorly and probably will follow on to major negative price changes post Easter.

So we await with bated breath the results. How did we go today?

Today we covered 30 Auctions. The James clearance rate for Inner Melbourne was 87 and Bidderman was 3. Early days but WOW!

Al Craig launches into 78 Sackville Street Kew selling under the hammer for $5,710,000 or over $4,500 per sq metre. Volcano - 6 Bidders

Al Craig launches into 78 Sackville Street, Kew, selling under the hammer for $5,710,000 or over $4,500 per sq metre. Volcano – 6 Bidders

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KEW, 78 Sackville Street (Jellis Craig) – Under Hammer $5,710,000, 6 Bidders.
The property is almost 1,200 square metres, but the large crowd is squeezed for viewing positions on the front yard among the small trees and bushes … (See more in Auction Reports)

HAWTHORN EAST, 2A Harcourt Street (Marshall White) – Under Hammer $4,105,000, 3 Bidders … (See more in Auction Reports)

CANTERBURY, 32 Alexandra Avenue (Marshall White) – Under Hammer $3,800,000, 4 Bidders.
Auctioneer, Andrew Gibbons, greets the crowd of 80 who have gathered on the footpaths and road … (See more in Auction Reports)

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ST KILDA EAST, 6 Crews Street (McGrath) – Under Hammer $1,410,000, 7 Bidders.
Rounding the corner into Crews Street in East St. Kilda for the auction this morning of number 6, I cannot believe the crowd … (See more in Auction Reports)

MALVERN EAST, 29 Nirvana Avenue (Marshall White) – Under Hammer $1,540,000, 6 Bidders
It’s the perfect summer morning to leap into “auction report land” … (See more in Auction Reports)

ELWOOD, 54 Spray Street (Biggin & Scott) – Under Hammer $1,970,000, 5 Bidders.
Built in the 1880s, this property drew a decently-sized crowd with a solid number of bidders – five to be precise … (See more in Auction Reports)

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SURREY HILLS, 15-17 Suffolk Road (Marshall White) – Passed In $3,900,000, 2 Bidders.
On a bright, sunny late Melbourne morning, the setting for this auction was the tranquil garden … (See more in Auction Reports)

BRIGHTON, 29 Kinane Street (JP Dixon) – Passed In $3,500,000, 1 Bidder
A Jonathan Dixon auction is always entertaining and this one was no exception … (See more in Auction Reports)

GLEN IRIS, 7 Boyanda Road (Marshall White) – Passed In $2,200,000, 0 Bidders
Standing on the lawn before this morning auction, the feel is like a morning tea garden tea party … (See more in Auction Reports)

David Hart sells after a pass-in 197 Church Street Brighton over $3,250,000. 1 bidder

David Hart sells after a pass-in, 197 Church Street, Brighton over $3,250,000. Lone Ranger – 1 bidder

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Bayside  (Full details in James Auction Reports click here)

BRIGHTON, 49 Burrows Street (Nick Johnstone) – Under Hammer $2,470,000, 2 Bidders.
An indoor auction this afternoon showcased this property’s great indoor-outdoor entertaining space.

BRIGHTON, 197 Church Street (Buxton) – After Auction (undisclosed above $3,250,000), 1 Bidder.
The ever immaculate David Hart is the auctioneer today.

BRIGHTON, 15 Lawrence Street (Marshall White) – Bought After (undisclosed above $1,460,000), 1 Bidder.
Phil de Fegely, I discovered, had “auctioned and sold all sorts…..from cattle to cars, furniture to fish…”

BRIGHTON, 29 Kinane Street (JP Dixon) – Passed In $3,500,000, 1 Bidder.
A Jonathan Dixon auction is always entertaining and this one was no exception.

BRIGHTON EAST, 20 Billson Street (Hodges) – After Auction (undisclosed above $2,025,000), 1 Bidder.
Julian Augustini is the epitome of good-natured perseverance.

BRIGHTON EAST, 8 Regent Street (Kay & Burton) – Passed In $1,950,000, 0 Bidders.
This was my fourth auction of the day and so far the going had been tough.

HAMPTON, 14 Kyarra Street (Hodges) – After Auction $2,065,000, 1 Bidder.
“This is a home to be proud of!” enthused Campbell Cooney to the 50 onlookers lined up in the sunshine.

49 Burrows Brighton - Gone, 2 bidders, under the hammer. Nick Johnstone $2,470,000

49 Burrows Brighton – Gone, 2 bidders, under the hammer. Nick Johnstone $2,470,000

Boroondara   (Full details in James Auction Reports click here)

ASHBURTON, 93 Nicholas Street (Marshall White)  – $1,800,000, 5 Bidders.
“My daughter and I walk down this path to school, and we call this the “English House,” said a lady after the auction.

CAMBERWELL, 4 Peppin Street (Marshall White) – Under Hammer $2,537,500, 5 Bidders.
This auction began with Mr McLauchlan offering a detailed description of the property and espousing its locational attributes.

CANTERBURY, 32 Alexandra Avenue (Marshall White) – Under Hammer $3,800,000, 4 Bidders.
Auctioneer, Andrew Gibbons, greets the crowd of 80 who have gathered on the footpaths and road.

CANTERBURY, 23 Faversham Road (Marshall White) – After Auction (undisclosed above $2,750,000), 2 Bidders.
With an opening bid of $2,000,000 auctioneer Hamish Tostevin moved things along with a vendor bid of $2,400,000.

GLEN IRIS, 7 Boyanda Road (Marshall White) – Passed In $2,200,000, 0 Bidders.
Standing on the lawn before this morning auction, the feel is like a morning tea garden tea party.

GLEN IRIS, 17 Rowen Street (Marshall White) – Under Hammer $2,560,000, 3 Bidders.
There was a big turn out, as the agents took to the street.

GLEN IRIS, 55 Celia Street (J A Cain First National) – Under Hammer $2,625,000, 4 Bidders.
After looking for an opening bid, auctioneer Bryan Cain was met with silence and started the auction with a vendor bid of $2,200,000.

Come with me boys and girls and one of you will be able to buy this home at 7 Boyanda Glen Iris says Andrew Hayne. One of them did and they bought after a pass-in over $2,400,000.

Come with me boys and girls and one of you will be able to buy this home at 7 Boyanda Glen Iris says Andrew Hayne. One of them did and they bought after a pass-in over $2,400,000.

HAWTHORN, 3 Power Avenue (Jellis Craig) – Under Hammer $2,240,000, 5 Bidders.
Thank you to the Jellis Craig team (assisted by an auction attendee) for providing us with all the details of this auction.

HAWTHORN, 99 Illawarra Road (Marshall White) – Bought After (undisclosed above $2,700,000), 2 Bidders.
The sun continued to shine down on the Melbourne afternoon, and it was lucky there was plenty of shady trees available.

HAWTHORN EAST, 2A Harcourt Street (Marshall White) – Under Hammer $4,105,000, 3 Bidders.
This 160+ crowd that attended 2A Harcourt Street received almost an hours worth of entertainment today.

KEW, 78 Sackville Street (Jellis Craig) – Under Hammer $5,710,000, 6 Bidders.
The property is almost 1,200 square metres, but the large crowd is squeezed for viewing positions on the front yard among the small trees and bushes.

KEW, 5 St Anthonys Place (Marshall White) – Under Hammer $1,785,000, 4 Bidders.
This auction got straight down to business with Antony Woodley at the helm.

KEW, 3 Kevin Grove (Marshall White) – $3,255,000, 4 Bidders.
There seemed to be a buzz around this auction, and with a crowd numbering 70, there was anticipation in the auctioneer’s (Mr Hamish Tostevin) voice.

SURREY HILLS, 15-17 Suffolk Road (Marshall White) – Passed In $3,900,000, 2 Bidders.
On a bright, sunny late Melbourne morning, the setting for this auction was the tranquil garden.

Port Phillip  (Full details in James Auction Reports click here)

ALBERT PARK, 116 Richardson Street (Marshall White) – Under Hammer $2,720,000, 3 Bidders.
The crowd gathered around this property was a bubbly one, made up of parents looking after newborn babies, dogs chasing after one another, and …….

ALBERT PARK, 1 Greig Street (Greg Hocking Holdsworth) – Under Hammer $2,140,000, 5 Bidders.
The crowd that surrounded this property spread out far and wide, appreciating the various vantage points that this property provided.

ELWOOD, 54 Spray Street (Biggin & Scott) – Under Hammer $1,970,000, 5 Bidders.
Built in the 1880s, this property drew a decently sized crowd with a solid number of bidders – five to be precise.

ST KILDA EAST, 6 Crews Street (McGrath) – Under Hammer $1,410,000, 7 Bidders.
Rounding the corner into Crews Street in East St. Kilda for the auction this morning of number 6, I cannot believe the crowd.

Invasion from Sydney - be interesting to see how the McGrath boys (and girls) go against the locals. With 160 turning up to 6 Crews St St Kilda East and 7 bidders competing under a Josh Stirling auction to $1,410,000 they have started as well as they can!

Invasion from Sydney – be interesting to see how the McGrath boys (and girls) go against the local Melbourne agents. With 160 turning up to 6 Crews St St Kilda East and Volcano – 7 bidders competing under a Josh Stirling auction to $1,410,000, McGrath’s have started as well as they can!

Stonnington   (Full details in James Auction Reports click here)

ARMADALE, 90 Sutherland Road (Jellis Craig) – Passed In $1,800,000, 1 Bidders.
Lachie Fraser-Smith got proceedings underway in front of the 100 strong crowd, in popular Armadale.

MALVERN EAST, 29 Nirvana Avenue (Marshall White) – Under Hammer $1,540,000, 6 Bidders
It’s the perfect summer morning to leap into “auction report land”.

PRAHRAN, 51 Hornby Street (Marshall White) – After Auction $3,020,000, 2 Bidders.
We have all squeezed onto the footpath to watch Andrew Hayne conduct the auction this morning.

Yarra  (Full details in James Auction Reports click here)

RICHMOND, 54 Murphy Street (Jellis Craig) – Under Hammer $1,601,000, 3 Bidders.
A large crowd gathered for this three-storey corner block townhouse only metres from Bridge Road.

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The Big News in the world of property is that Hugh James started his first day in Real Estate today and it made me very happy. I hope he makes his own way merrily in what I have found to be a brilliant occupation. Good luck son – not that he reads this rubbish or listens to me!!! Sorry for the indulgence – on we move.

Offies

Off markets (unadvertised homes for sale) James Buyers Agents and Advocates have analysed this week:

Brighton – brick period home – $3,5m

Toorak – older home with north-south tennis court – $7m-plus

Hawthorn – Scotch Hill – knock down with north -south tennis court – $7m – $8m

Parkville – terrace home – $2m-plus

Camberwell – renovated Victorian – circa $4m

Middle Brighton  –knock down or renovate 1037 sqm – circa $3m

Hawthorn East – single level – $1.35m

Canterbury – heritage home to renovate – 1021 sqm – $3m-plus

Glen Iris – 25 year old home to renovate or knock down – 676 sqm – $1.5m plus

Armadale – renovated large period home – $3.5 – $4m

Brighton – weatherboard period home – circa $2m

Call our off market experts Gina (0457 835 255) or Simone Clarke (0400 304 111)

A man happy in his work. Warwick Gardiner sweet talks 5 bidders into a final under the hammer figure of $2,140,000 at 1 Greig Albert Park. Good home - see our rating and about the right money, considering similar recent sales in the street.

A man happy in his work. Warwick Gardiner sweet talks 5 bidders (Volcano) into a final under the hammer figure of $2,140,000 at 1 Greig Albert Park. Good home – see our rating and about the right money, considering similar recent sales in the street.

James Buy-Sell

Selling your home – Selling Agent Selection

An increasing part of our business is Selling Agent Selection for our Buying Clients.

Our buying clients want help with selling their existing home, either before or after they buy a new home with us through our Buyer Advocacy Service. They want, like every other seller, to actually sell and in doing so, sell at the maximum price.

In our opinion there are four key determinants that maximize price when selling

1.     Market Timing

2.     You (the seller) and your opinions of things

3.     Agent

4.     Marketing (Method, Advertising and Presentation)

More Info

1.     Market Timing has a fair degree of luck or unchangeable circumstance in it.

2.     You are a huge factor – what you know to be true but actually isn’t, has a big effect on your final result.

3.     Agent – of all the things you have control over (with the exception of your mind) this is the most important decision you make in relation to your house sale result. Please read the word agent NOT agency.

4.     Marketing really does matter – present well and you add money, present poorly and you subtract. The question is what’s important and bang for your buck.

So how do you select an agent or more importantly how do you select the best agent?

You could select an agent you know – this could be the one that rings you up religiously according to her computerized contact software and asks after your children. So many sellers think this is important and it obviously is to many – but I don’t see how – unless that person is giving you information of value. In real estate, friendship is a distant second in value to professionalism and ethics. It really is daylight between professionalism and ethics and “friendship “in terms or results.

Friends often pay a higher commission and get forced to accept a weaker position.

Another option is to choose any agent because they appear all the same. This mindset (which you can control) is similar to the one that thinks all doctors have the same success rates, so who cares about which brain or heart surgeon you use.

We found one - a no bidder auction at 8 Regent Street Brighton East - yes there still a few around. Pass in on a vendor and lone bid of $1,950,000

We found one – a no bidder (duck) auction at 8 Regent Street Brighton East – yes there were still a few around. Passed in on a vendor and lone bid of $1,950,000.

How do we at James Buyers Agents and Advocates help you select an agent?

We suggest a shortlist of three agents whom we know to be good at selling the type of home you have to sell. That is not always the principal or high profile agents. We know which agents perform the best, as we have to negotiate with them day in and day out.

We then run them through a choice of two processes (with you present), which allows you to make an informed decision as to who would be the most suitable agent for you.

Agent selection process involves

1. Home visits

2. Interview Management

3. Review of Submissions

4. Traffic Light explanations

5. Review of buyers and sellers after process is finished (if appropriate)

Please note: We at no time represent the buyer and seller on the one transaction – at all times we default to representing the buyer if a conflict arises – the sellers then have their own agent.

I won’t go into bagging lead generation sites or advocates that refer agents’ work for 50% of the commission or vendor advocates that start incentive commissions and then ……….. Many of these schemes actually get you a weaker agent, as the good agent won’t work for peanuts or they won’t work diligently for peanuts.

On a recent home in Camberwell our client selected the agent that promised $800,000 more than the other two agents and then delivered $400,000 more with a strategy we all work shopped. Disappointed client? No, rapt – lateral thinking.

All bar one of our clients who used our Agent Selection Service sold their home in 2015. Our cost was deducted from the selling agent fee, was the same for all agents and was at no additional charge to our client.

For full information please contact Mal James (0408 107 988) or our James Selling Agent Selection Division on 9804 3133.

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And that ladies and gentleman is your lot for this week. The first big auction week is over. As a company we were involved in 5 with mixed success today – it was tough!!

James Buyers Agents and Advocates is also buying privately and off markets as well.

If anyone of our 7 advocates can help you with Clarity of Mind, Off Markets, Values, Negotiation or Bidding Only then you only have to call for a no obligation discussion on 9804 3133.

This is what one of our James Buyers Agents and Advocates clients said, whom we bought for today. We only met these clients this week.

Dear Simone and Craig

So sat with a glass of Shiraz as adrenaline now subsided and reflecting on a job well done by all I think.

You’ve done a brilliant job as a team to get us into this position in a matter of a few days; there is no doubt we would not have even been at the races today if we had not called you. You called it just right in terms of strategy.

We now get to forget about 6 months of house hunting or 18 months of construction, at a price we would take every day of the week. We are very happy.

I will absolutely take credit for realising I didn’t know what I was doing and had the sense to call!

Enjoy your weekends and pass on my thanks to the rest of the team.

Name provided but withheld

In the shadows of life came two bidders and the fought for 23 Faversham Canterbury (see our James Rating) during and after the auction till it was sold around $2,800,000. Desiree Wakim and Hamish Tostevin

From the shadows of Canterbury came two bidders and they fought for 23 Faversham (google our James Rating) during and after the auction till it was sold around $2,800,000. Desiree Wakim and Hamish Tostevin

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