The 7 Steps to Selling a House in WA
Is it legal to sell your house in WA without an agent?
The answer is yes, absolutely.
Let’s look at how to sell your own home in Western Australia, step-by-step.
Step 1: Preparing the contract of sale
Ensure your contract of sale is drawn up by your solicitor or licensed settlement agent (conveyancer) before advertising your property for sale. This is known as the Contract for Sale of Land or Strata Title by Offer and Acceptance (or O and A, for short).
Your legal representative will also need to provide a Joint Form of General Conditions for the Sale of Land (the General Agreement) to you and the buyer when an offer is made. In your contract specify if you’re excluding any chattels — dishwashers, rangehoods, curtains and blinds are generally included in the sale.
Step 2: Setting your price
In setting your price, don’t forget it’s illegal to misrepresent the property’s sale price. The selling price shouldn’t be lower than an agent’s estimated price or the lowest amount you’d accept. To research your price, you can:
- Request a free property valuation report online at PropertyNow.com.au and, if available, you’ll also receive a free property suburb report for your postcode. Research similar sold properties and for sale properties online
- Obtain a valuation from an independent Property Valuer
- Request a property valuation estimate or range from real estate agents.
Step 3: Open Homes and Private Inspections
Once your property is advertised, you’ll need to let buyers inspect it via open homes or private inspections.
Step 4: Receiving the offer
Offers are submitted by way of a signed O and A. Sometimes, buyers may add an expiration clause to the sale contract so that the offer doesn’t remain open indefinitely if the vendor has not signed by a certain date. Have your solicitor or conveyancer review any changes made by the buyer.
If someone makes you an offer, you may take a holding deposit of the full purchase amount or a nominated partial amount. This should be held in your solicitor’s trust account or a trust account you’ve arranged through PropertyNow, to be returned if you don’t accept the offer. No deposit is necessary in WA.
Step 5: Signing the contract of sale
Signing the O and A is the next step in the legal process of selling a property in WA. Once the document is signed by you, and the buyer is notified that you’ve accepted their offer, it becomes a binding contract of sale. Any changes or counter offers can be made on the O and A and initialled. A copy must be given to the buyer and vendor.
You can now consider marking your property as “Under Contract.” But you should still keep a record of any enquiries from other buyers, just in case the sale falls through.
In real estate WA, there’s no cooling-off period for the buyer or seller, so you can go ahead and mark it as sold on your marketing.
Step 7 is Settlement
On signing the contract, you and the buyer will agree to a settlement date. Settlement is commonly 30 to 60 days after exchange.
At settlement, the buyer ‘settles’ their purchase by paying the purchase price, less their deposit. If you’re using a solicitor, they may meet with the buyer’s solicitor to ensure they have everything needed for the sale to proceed.
Now those steps are out of the way, it’s time to put your feet up and congratulate yourself on a job well done – you’ve just successfully sold your house without an agent, and potentially saved yourself commission costs in the process.
Sell Real Estate WA via Auction
If there’s a high demand for your property you may prefer to sell it at auction. Ideally, you should book your Auctioneer prior to listing your property, so that the date and time can be included in any advertising.
On the day of the auction, you should set your minimum price, or reserve, with the auctioneer. Once the reserve price is met or exceeded, the property is sold. There’s no cooling-off period and the contract of sale is unconditional. The winning bidder signs the offer to buy, which is then accepted and signed by the auctioneer on behalf of the vendor.
The deposit (usually 10%) is payable immediately after the auction.
Settlement occurs in the same way as for a private treaty sale.
Cooling Off Period
There are no cooling-off periods in WA unless specified within the sale contract.
Want to know more? Read 4 things you should know about the cooling off period
Selling your home during coronavirus
The pandemic has had a significant effect on the number of properties sold during the first quarter in 2020. Prices aside, Western Australian metropolitan areas sold more than 1000 properties each in January, February and March of 2020, but in April (when the pandemic was most intense), there were only 179 properties sold. During April, COVID-19 restrictions meant open homes were limited to only 10 people, and sellers used virtual tours and online videos as a way to reach buyers.
In direct correlation with the rest of the country, sellers chose to withdraw their properties from the market when the pandemic hit. However, WA was quicker than some states to lift restrictions. By late April, open homes had recommenced and sellers once again started listing their properties as conditions returned to normal.
You don’t have to use an agent to sell your own house in WA
Did you know PropertyNow can list your property on all the major real estate websites, give you all the real estate support you need to sell your own home and help you save thousands in agent commissions? You do now!
Contact the PropertyNow team to learn how easy it is to sell your home without an agent.