Skeen News | Skeen Property Buyers - Part 2 +61 2 9033 8616

How to avoid buying the little house of horrors

31 October 2016 TweetShareLink+1


So, you’re in the market to purchase a home. It’s exciting, but also daunting as you’re spending a vast amount of money and you really need to get it right. You can avoid your house hunting turning into a living nightmare by following these simple steps.

Get pre-approved finance
It sounds like a bit of a no-brainer, but you would be surprised by the number of people that start a property search before getting pre-approval. The first thing you need to do when searching for a property is to establish your budget, and, unless money is no object, you can’t set an accurate budget without first seeking finance.

Understand the FULL cost of the purchase
Many inexperienced buyers can fall prey to this one, and it’s a big one. The sale price is NOT the final price. When budgeting for your property purchase, ensure you include extra costs, such as stamp duties, valuations costs, rates, loan application fees, solicitor’s fees and mortgage insurance. These extras can add tens of thousands of dollars to the sale price.

Do a building and Pest Inspection
Firstly, Building and Pest Inspections are only effective if you use a well-regarded, independent inspector. Don’t simply follow the selling agent’s recommendation, find your own – chances are, you will need them more than once. Secondly, inspectors are trained to find every little fault in a property. Don’t sweat the little things, focus on the big problems (if there are any) and research the costs to rectify the issues.

Be wise to the role of the selling agent
As friendly as selling agents may seem, smart buyers understand that the agent is working in the interest of the seller, NOT the buyer. No matter how well you know your local agent, when it comes to the crunch, they’re not working for you. Agents are legally obligated to act in the interest of their client – worth keeping in mind when you’re serious about a property.

Don’t exceed your budget
Why is it that the house that ticks all your boxes is just a tiny bit more that you can afford? It happens to all of us – if you only had a few more thousand, but the thing is… you don’t. Your lender sets a borrowing limit based on what you can afford – overspending is gambling with your financial security. Always factor in changes, like rate rises, into your budget to avoid any unwanted financial strain.

Research the area
Do your homework if your property search is in an unfamiliar area. Remember, you’re not just buying a house but also the location, so it’s imperative to find out about local amenities, schools, transport links and even the crime rate. There are undesirable pockets in many popular suburbs – don’t get caught out on the wrong side of the tracks.

Check for Development Applications
Before purchasing a property, it’s wise to consult the local council for any Development Applications (DAs) that may impact the area. Are parking meters going in? Is there a new block of apartments being built on your back fence? These are things that will affect the future value of your property and will likely not be evident at the open home.

Meet the neighbours
It doesn’t matter how good your property’s location is, if you’ve got horrible neighbours, it can be hell. Before buying a property, talk to the neighbours, and ask them about the area and how they find living there. Driving around the area at the different times of the day is also a good idea, to get a feel for the neighbourhood.

• Follow this guide to avoid any nasty surprises when you’re making your next property purchase. For some extra help in the market, contact Skeen Property.

A GUIDE TO REAL ESTATE AGENT SPEAK – What they say… and what they really mean

13 October 2016 TweetShareLink+1

It’s Saturday morning and for most, the start to a nice relaxing weekend. But not for you, you’re attempting to purchase a property and a day of house hunting is about to begin… again.
So you get up and prepare to deal with those fresh-faced agents in expensive suits, who seem to stand in your way of buying ANY house. 
After months of active searching you probably heard every clichéd agent line in the book – but have you ever thought about what they really mean? Let’s decipher 10 of the most famous (and often infuriating) lines so you can be better equipped at those opens.
Price Guides
One of the most frustrating responses from agents is regarding price. Suppose the agent quotes “around $1.2 to 1.3 million”. If you’ve been looking for more than five minutes, you probably know quoted prices are always undercooked. Add at least another 10% to the higher end of the guide and go from there.  
Subject to Council Approval (STCA)
Flagging potential for improvement is a nice selling line for agents, but buyers beware. Agents add STCA to their marketing campaigns with little or no knowledge of what’s actually possible. If you’re serious about a reno, do your homework.
Close to Transport 
A well-worn line, and one that’s appealing when commuting is such a nightmare. But when they say ‘close’, do they mean your windows are rattling every time a train goes past, or you’re ducking every time a plane takes off? 
Plenty of off-Street Parking 
Can you really squeeze two cars into that space? On the brochure, it looks possible but if you get the measuring tape out it may only hold a Mini and a Smart car. If parking is important to you, measure, measure and measure again.  
Sought-After Area
Everyone wants to live in a sought-after area. After all, its sought-after for a reason.
But just by including that little phrase, the agent is sowing the seed for buyers to be prepared to pay a ridiculous price for a fancy location. 
Renovators delight
More often than not, ‘renovators delight’ translates to ‘deceased estate’, and you know what that means? Every room has different wallpaper; there’s a funky smell and wild animals have taken over the overgrown garden. 
Tranquil Location
This may be appealing if you’re looking at retirement villages, but if you’re buying a home then you’d better be prepared to travel long distances to get a coffee or any shopping done. Basically, it’s miles from anywhere.
Will Suit First Home Buyers 
On hearing this one you might think you’re in for a bargain, but this property is likely so unappealing that only rookie buyers and investors would touch it
with a fifty-foot pole.
Plenty of Potential 
Try not to get starry-eyed with grand renovation dreams here, you could need bucket loads of money to realise this property's potential. Not to mention a lot of time and heartache.
Recently Renovated
Turn-key properties are very appealing to some buyers, but make sure you look beyond the nice paintwork and shiny floorboards. Potentially, it could be a cheap renovation turnaround for a quick sale.
* We hope this bit of insider knowledge helps at your next your next open home. If you want to get even more of an edge in the property market, head to, or call or email us on +61 2 9033 8616, 

Commercial Buyers Agent

15 June 2016 TweetShareLink+1

We are noticing Barangaroo setting records for CBD commercial space and that it will no doubt be a strong retail, business, entertainment & residential area for many years to come.

In our opinion - regardless of the higher prices this site will be a strong investment, if you can secure some commercial space there now.

The other "hot spot" for enormous capital growth in commercial retail or office space will be Millers Point - with our prediction of this area becoming like Greenwich Village  is to New York.

As your commercial buyers agent we can help you find your dream property space faster, saving you time, money and stress.



RBA Keeps Rates on Hold in June 2016

07 June 2016 TweetShareLink+1

The Reserve Bank of Australia has announced it will hold the official cash rate at 1.75% in June, following a 25 basis point reduction in May.

It was widely expected that the cash rate would remain on hold among a few positive indicators, suggesting there was no urgent need for easier lending through a reduction in interest rates.

The first of these was growth in gross domestic product (GDP). GDP growth in the March 2016 quarter surpassed expectations of 0.7%, expanding 1.1%. This is the strongest result since the March quarter of 2012.

Ordinarily, such a strong economic growth rate may be accompanied by higher spending and consumer confidence, which may lead to discussions around tightening monetary policy to curb inflation. However, the GDP expansion was in real terms. This means that inflation is not taken into account and the measure is looking at the increase in volumes produced, rather than increases in the money earned.

8 Reasons why Doctors use a buyers agent

07 June 2016 TweetShareLink+1

1 Time -They are time poor and a buyers agent can cover the property market for them 6 days a week.

2 Shortlist Properties - Once we have viewed all of the properties, we will compile a shortlist of those that best meet your requirements and deliver this to you.

3 Find it faster  - With a team of agents working for you, we will cover more ground and invest more hours searching, locating, investigating and evaluating properties to make the whole process quicker, smoother and stress free.

4 Silent Sales - We know what to look for and where to look and because we are doing this full time, we are able to cover the full property “on” and “off” Market so; you don’t miss any properties at all. Having preview and direct access to the best properties provides you with an advantage over other buyers and allows you to secure your ideal property faster, saving you time, money and eliminating all the stress.

5 Values - We subscribe to the databases that give you the most up to date comparable sale price's so, you are able to make a well informed decision on a properties value.

6 Negotiation - Negotiating is an art and we know the tricks of the trade, so once we have found a suitable property we use these skills to secure the property on the best terms and at the lowest possible price.

7 Supervise - After exchange of contracts we will make sure everything is attended to in a professional and efficient manner right through to the day of settlement.We will liaise with all parties and can also assist in the co-ordination of solicitors, pest and building inspectors, valuers, conveyancers and finance.

8 Representation

We do not receive secret commissions or ‘kickbacks’ from sellers. You will have an unbiased independent property Buyers’ Agent working on your side, with your best interests at all times.


Contact Us

Tel +61 2 9033 8616
Fax +61 2 9033 8600

Suite 25 Level 1
50 Yeo Street
Neutral Bay NSW 2089



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