Buying a house in Sydney can feel like a futile exercise. Either that or one in financial humiliation and emotional-masochism.
With skyscraper prices (that, in the best areas, don’t even fall during a crisis) greasy realtors, competitive overseas buyers, switched on local buyers and Annoying Activewear Neighbours who treat every inspection as a chance to stickybeak, it can all feel a bit much.
Either you make a premature purchase and spend the rest of your life in debt, or you waste countless weekends, months of patience and years of looking, only to come out without buying anything.
No wonder so many people are now looking at Wollongong and Newcastle.
If you’re keen to find that happy medium though, and maybe even score a water-adjacent Sydney property of your own, then we’d recommend taking a (digital) pew and listening to the insights of an expert.
Enter: leading Eastern Suburbs real estate agent Gavin Rubinstein.
DMARGE recently had an exclusive chat with Gavin to understand the biggest mistakes Eastern Suburbs property buyers are making right now.
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One big regret Gavin sees all too often is: “Waiting for the market to fall, (nobody can pick the bottom of the market) and missing out – only to find themselves still looking 12-24 months later.”
“Something many buyers could have done sooner is engage a reputable buyer’s agent to help them through the buying process,” Gavin adds.
“Beware of ‘paralysis by analysis’ – one must be practical when buying real estate, but with the homes I sell, being family homes, most of which are unique there is an emotional factor that needs to be accounted for.”
The solution? According to Gavin, “If it feels right, ticks 8 out of your ten boxes, is within budget and seems fair priced based on similar properties that have traded, don’t waste time with moving forward because with supply issues in the East it’s questionable when another opportunity of the same calibre will come up again.”
Gavin then told us that smart buyers in Sydney, over the next three to five years, should: “get into the market as soon as possible” as well as “look for opportunities where there is a spike in new listings.”
“The boost in supply means more options for buyers and this puts downward pressure on prices.”
Edward Brown, director at Australia’s leading real estate provider Belle Property makes the same point. In fact, as he told us a few months back, one of the most common mistakes Australians make in a falling market is allowing themselves to be overly influenced by non-expert (and sometimes expert) opinions.
“Do your research, look at realestate.com.au, look at Domain, see what’s been selling that’s similar, get a bit of a feel for what things are worth and take that into your value – every real estate agent, buyer, broker, all have an opinion – it’s whether or not it has any relevance.”
“Family members are always going to say – don’t pay more than such an such – but what we always see is people having regrets that they should or would have paid more for a property, had they had their time around again.”
“The opinion was said to them that they shouldn’t pay any more, that they should walk away – but one of the biggest mistakes people tend to make is they ask too many opinions of everyone and then pass up good opportunities.”
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Got it? Your sandy dream awaits.