Selling by Auction

AuctioningHow does an auction work?

  • The auction is conducted by an auctioneer either directly hired by the vendor, or by their chosen real estate agency.
  • The home is advertised with the date and time of the auction displayed.
  • Potential buyers (bidders) compete against each other, by making increasingly high offers until only one buyer remains.
  • The house is then sold to that highest bidder.

This is provided the reserve price (the price that the vendor has specified as being the minimum they will accept) has been exceeded or reached, or if the vendor concedes to a lower price than they originally hoped for.
If the home doesn’t reach the vendor’s reserve price, the property is ’passed in’ and the current highest bidder then has the right of first refusal to any further offers.

Advantages of selling by auction

  • In an auction scenario, it’s harder for the buying public to determine true market value because it’s difficult to compare other properties when they are not fully aware of the vendor’s sale price expectations.
  • People bidding are buying with terms and conditions determined by the vendor.
  • Vendors are protected by the reserve price. They set the reserve together with the real estate agent after assessing the bidding strength of the potential purchasers. This determined in part by information collated during the open–house inspections.
  • The vendor controls how much is spent on the marketing plan by choosing how much the auction is advertised.
  • If the property doesn’t sell at the auction, the vendor is commonly put in direct contact with the most likely buyer and can enter further negotiations.
  • The property is usually exclusively held by one real estate agent/auction house for a fixed period of time (normally four to six weeks). Marketing is usually intense over this short period of time, with either no price or a possible price range advertised.
  • An early sale can occur when a buyer feels ‘pushed’ to make an offer to buy the home before the auction day. Usually because they believe competition on auction day will be too fierce.
  • The sale contract is usually deemed ’unconditional’, meaning the sale will conclude on settlement day rather than waiting for the buyer to receive finance or further inspect the building.
  • Homes with unique features often do well at auctions  as they may attract more competition between bidders.
  • If more than one person wants to buy the property, the competitive nature of an auction can cause people to bid higher than they originally wanted to spend. This can result in large profits for the vendor.

Disadvantages of selling by auction

  • Sometimes, properties are ‘passed in’ on auction day and, despite the owner still intending to sell over the coming weeks, it can upset or eliminate some potential buyers.
  • Bidding is a fickle process and if, for whatever reason, bidding is slow, this can send an incorrect message about the true value of the home.
  • Some potential buyers don’t like the competitive nature and immediacy of the auction process and won’t even bid.
  • Now that auctions are highly regulated, many states require that buyers must formally register. Some potential buyers may not like this process and will not sign up.
  • Marketing and advertising campaigns for auctions can be quite intense, which can be expensive for the vendor.
  • If you are in a hurry to sell, an auction offers the best chance of selling by a specific date, but there is no guarantee the property will sell or that you will receive the price you desire.
  • Auctions don’t always necessarily offer you the best sale price, as the winning person only needs to bid marginally higher than their competitors. You’ll never be sure that they offered the maximum amount they were willing to pay.
  • Most real estate agent auction contracts provide the agency with sole selling rights until the auction and then for a period of time afterwards. This then locks the vendor in with one agency for a defined period of time. In the event your property does get ‘passed in’, it’s a good idea to prepare for this by only giving the agency a specific period of time to retain exclusive selling rights after the auction (one month, for example).

Source: Sell My Castle

Sustained Support Brings Results

We Sell

Some properties sell more quickly that others but Wallers have a track record of selling, of sustaining interest no matter how long it takes. The owner of this striking Federation home in Brown Street, Castlemaine knew that Wallers have the reputation of being the ‘top sellers’ in Castlemaine and is thrilled with the recent sale.

When talking about the process the owner made it clear that Tom Roberston’s work throughout the time the home was on the market was characterised by his responsiveness. She made a particular point of mentioning that Tom’s responses were always timely, no matter how small her query or concern may have been.

This delighted owner also noted that Tom never lost interest in her home, that he stuck by her, supported her though the negotiation process and was very present throughout the whole journey.


Tom  Robertson

Tom Robertson

Aside from being delighted with the personal responsiveness of the agent, the owner was most impressed with how the property was marketed through the Waller Web site and the personalised blog feature. She was very happy that the firm kept her property prominently displayed throughout. She has no hesitation in recommending Wallers and affirms the company motto of ‘We Sell’! 

Advantages Of Open Inspections

Open For InspectionOne of the most important marketing tools that a seller has at his or her disposal is a property inspection. These can make or break a buyer’s decision, and are a vital part of the sales process. It can seem like a daunting task to basically invite strangers to come take a wander through your home. To get a better idea of the space and finer details of a property, buyers may open up cupboards, drawers, and other intimate areas of your daily life. This can be intimidating to sellers, to say the least.

It’s important to remember that there are two types of property inspections. You can arrange to have open inspections or offer private tours of your property when selling your home. Both of these offer numerous benefits but may have different consequences depending on how the inspection process is managed.

Advantages of Open Inspections

Open inspections used to be considered a mandatory part of selling any property, but are now not quite as common as they used to be. In an open inspection, a specific time and date is set for potentially buyers to drop by and walk through the property for a viewing. This event is publicly advertised, so that interested buyers and their real estate agents can plan ahead for it and arrive with questions. One of the major advantages to an open inspection is that it opens up your property to the widest possible range of buyers. This may include several types of buyers:

  • Those who live in the same neighbourhood and are interested in buying
  • Individuals who may be thinking about buying in the future but are not interested in the commitment of a private inspection
  • Buyers who are not yet sure what they’re looking for but are willing to view a variety of properties to find out

The latter two types of buyers may not take the initiative to arrange a private inspection at this point in their property search, so you can only reach out to them with an open inspection. To try and maximise the volume of attendees at an open inspection, they are usually held on weekends.

In terms of practicality, open inspections offer the ability to show a large number of prospective buyers through the home at the same time, rather than arranging separate tour dates.

Check our Open For Inspection list and, if you are interested in buying or selling take the time to visit and see our professional approach to selling.

Home Buyer Deal Breakers

Faulty WiringWhen potential buyers are looking at your home, some things may send them running out the door. They may be able to look beyond wallpaper that just isn’t to their liking, but if you have one of these home buying deal breakers when selling a home, they need to be addressed prior to showing:


Mold has received a lot of attention for being a pervasive problem that can cause health issues. If you have mold in your home, it can pay to take measures such as replacing a bathroom fan or calling in an expert in mold removal.

Leaks or drainage issues

If you have a water line in your basement, prospective buyers may be concerned. Especially if it’s located where the walls meet the floor, it can mean drainage issues. If it’s higher, buyers may assume your roof leaks or you have damaged pipes.

Similarly, if a buyer sees a lot of standing water in the crawlspace, they may be turned off.

Plumbing problems

Buyers will want to know that the water pressure and drainage in your home is adequate, so they may turn on the faucets and flush the toilets. A water heater with signs of rust or leakage can also be a red flag.

Old or bad wiring

Check plugs and sockets for scorches, and make sure they’re not hot. Flickering lights can also make a potential buyer think there may be electrical issues in your home. Exposed wires are a hazard that will need to be addressed, and they’re a sign that some do-it-yourself work was probably done.

If you have home buying deal breakers when selling a home, you’ll want to have them addressed before showing your home. Once a buyer moves on, you probably won’t be able to get them back.

Surprising Things That Add Value

House SalesAgents are always on the lookout for anything that will up the value of the properties they are trying to sell. Larger sale prices = happier clients + larger commissions, a win-win in any real estate transaction. While some factors (such as property-size or whether or not the home has a pool) are immediately considered during the home value assessment, researchers have uncovered some additional selling points that agentscould be using to their advantage, but are often unaware of.

What are these additional, uncommon factors, you may ask?  Well,  HouseLogic have done a great job of explaining some of these top selling points in their article 9 Surprising Things That Add Value to Your House.” Be sure to check it out before determining the value of your next property. Trust us – you may actually be surprised with what you find! But do take into account that this article originates in the United States.

Inviting Office Spaces

office spaceWe’re constantly on-the-go, so for many of us a home office is our hub at the end of the day. To make your workspace one that motivates and keeps you productive, follow these five tips:

  1. Pump up the accent colours! Bright colours are mood boosters; they inspire creativity and positive thinking. Incorporate a fun colour or two by way of comfortable chairs or an accent wall with complementing artwork, and you will feel instantly more comfortable.
  2. Keep it clean. Nothing interrupts a peaceful space more than clutter, so spend one day pushing through it all and pitching anything you haven’t used in a while. Eliminate multiple copies of documents or books, and set a reminder to do a quick refresher once a month.
  3. Comfort is the key. Invest in a desk chair that will help your posture. Use softer lighting to ease the strain on your eyes. Place an aroma therapeutic air oil diffuser with a citrus scent near your desk – one whiff will wake you up when you start to fade.
  4. Get personal. Frame a few photos that have meaning for you – family, favorite destinations, hobbies – they’ll make you feel at home and keep you focused on personal goals!
  5. Make it interactive! Install a white board or cork board to serve as a living thought-starter. Write down half-baked ideas or tack up an inspirational quote that you can build upon along the way. Some ideas make more sense when brought to life with visuals, others are simply more fun that way.

You can find more tips at

Come and Live Deliberately


When Thoreau heard the sound of a horn in the depths of the woods the sound image suggested repose to him. That sound, he said, is as friendly as the hermit’s distant candle. When the current owners of 149 Specimen Gully Road (Click Link to View Web Feature) first drove up the winding path to a red cedar home perched on a rise they knew that they had found a place for peace and solitude.

This property is filled with the kind of poetic spaces that Gaston Bachelard writes of in The Poetics of Space. The red cedar home sits on a rise, shut in by Box Iron Bark, swathed by a magnificent garden, the charm of which is evident in the adjoining gallery of images. This is a home, a nest, downier, much loved, the kind of home many dream of making. The generous spaces are totally liveable providing room to spread out, entertain and enjoy the spaciousness of sweeping open spaces.

A nearby shed, with warmth provided by a wood burning, converted LPG cylinder  acts as an artists studio but its uses are many.

Castlemaine State Festival Launched On Friday

Castlemaine State Festival

If there is any one time to experience the exceptional artistic and creative verve that defines this region, it is during the biennial Castlemaine State Festival. This year will be no exception and it all begins on Friday the 13th of March! Are you ready? Do you have your tickets? Make sure to pick up a program to check out the huge range of free events as well!

Castlemaine Farmer’s Market

Farmers Market Castlemaine

The Castlemaine Farmers’ Market located in beautiful Victory Park in the centre of historic Castlemaine has more than 50 quality stallholders showcasing produce from Central Victoria. The Market sells locally grown and made produce and is accredited with the Victorian Farmers Market Association. The charter of accredited Farmers Markets is to support local producers and to encourage consumers to buy local.

Held on the first Sunday of each month, except January, from 9am-1pm the Castlemaine Farmers Market is the place to meet friends, enjoy great coffee and fabulous food and stock up on delicious fresh produce.

Tomorrow is Market Day! Make sure to pop in and enjoy the vibrance of this very popular market.

Effective Pruning

pruningTrees are the most prominent component of most home landscapes. They add aesthetic and financial value, and they can help control energy costs as well. But having trees in the landscape isn’t as simple as just digging a hole and dropping a seedling into it.

Trees require some upkeep, and some of the most important tips to maintaining your tree involve the many ways that good pruning can help your trees.

Disease Management

A wide array of diseases can strike your tree. While foliar problems like anthracnose typically infect the entire tree, others like fire blight are confined to random branches on the tree. Because these conditions aren’t reversible once they become active, a frequent treatment is to limit spread by cutting out infected areas.

But good pruning also helps prevent diseases. Wet, fast-growing plant foliage is a perfect environment for fungal diseases to thrive. Air movement and sunlight exposure are key ways of drying foliage, and pruning to favor those two factors is the best way to improve them.

It’s also helpful to other plants in your landscape when you prune your trees. Removing the lower limbs makes mowing easier and permits more sunlight for grass, reducing weeds and moss. The air movement and sunlight penetration taking place high in your tree will also take place in your understory shrubs, bushes, and other plants, helping prevent diseases in areas far beyond the tree.

Break Prevention

Trees aren’t always the best planners. They sometimes create limbs that don’t necessarily go the best direction for structural stability. In time, these limbs get longer and heavier, creating a potentially delicate imbalance that can allow the wind to break limbs out of the tree. That leads to the potential for more than just an ugly tree; falling limbs can damage property and injure people.

An experienced home landscaper can identify these bad-news branches and remove them before they become large enough to create a hazard. If you have any concerns about particular limbs, consider seeking advice from a qualified arborist before taking action. Remember, you can always cut the limb later, but you can never put it back.

Just Plain Beauty

While we’re on the topic of out-of-place branches, we should think about the overall shape of our trees. Each species has its own unique silhouette. Oaks are round and full, whereas maples take on more of an arrowhead shape. Sometimes environmental factors, damaged limbs, and other outside forces can pull a tree out of its normal shape. In those cases, sometimes the judicious removal of a few errant limbs can begin to restore a more appropriate shape.

The Cardinal Sin

Whatever pruning a tree may need along its trunk, it never should be topped. Removing the top branches of any tree creates a wide variety of problems. First of all, this creates an imbalance in the top of the tree that can encourage splits high up in the tree later on. Also, the tree reacts to limb loss in this area by quickly forming soft, fast-growing water sprouts that have little ability to resist disease and insect invasion. And finally, the pruning wounds in a topped tree are facing upward, meaning they cannot heal properly due to exposure to sunlight and wind. These open wounds are an ideal invasion point for insects and diseases.

Stay Green – Heating Older Homes

Radiator2Older homes have a lot of history and character. When you take in the solidity of the walls, and the trim and details molded and applied by hand, you know that they were built with care and built to last. Unfortunately, when it comes to energy efficiency, older homes can leave a lot to be desired.

Old windows were usually single panes of glass in wooden frames; or they were leaded or stained glass that was thicker, but still not insulated. Doors were thick, heavy wood, but had little to no weather stripping to prevent drafts. Walls had almost no insulation to speak of.

As the owner of, or tenant in, an older home you are probably already aware that you need to take special steps to make your home as energy efficient as possible. Below are some things that you might not have thought of.

Contact Your Power Company

Thanks to deregulation, a lot of power companies have to offer competitive rates to attract and keep customers. Many of these companies are also offering customers green energy options for heating and cooling their homes.

It’s a good idea to check with your energy provider each season to see if they offer a green energy option. If you live in a deregulated area, you can also check with the other providers to compare your options. If you find a company that offers a green option, you can transfer your service to them. If no one in your area offers a green option, keep checking with them each season to see if anything has changed.

Weatherproof Your House

Weatherproofing your house is about more than just sealing the doors and windows, and insulating the walls. Although sealing against drafts is certainly important, there are plenty of other things you can do to make your home even more comfortable, and reduce your carbon footprint.

Window and Wall Coverings

A lot of older homes don’t have space for insulation in the exterior walls. Plaster and lath was laid down right on top of the building materials. As a result, the exterior walls tend to get very cold in the winter, and hot in the summer.

Old castles had the same issues with insulation. To deal with drafts, people used tapestries to insulate the walls and windows. These heavy fabrics trapped drafts, and prevented heat from escaping through the walls. You could do the same with your home by hanging large, thick, insulating curtains over your windows; you could even make them wide enough to extend the width of the wall.

At night you can draw the curtains across the windows to seal in the heat; during the day you can open the curtains to in natural sunlight to further warm the room. Even if you plan to put plastic over all your windows, insulating curtains can add an extra layer of protection.

Radiator Reflectors

If you have radiators in your home, you might notice that the wall behind the radiator gets really hot. Well, all that heat actually radiates through the wall and outside your home. In fact, if you were to touch that part of the wall outside your house, it would probably feel much warmer than the surrounding areas.

If you put something reflective, like tin foil, behind the radiator, the heat will bounce off the surface and radiate back into the room. You could also paint the wall with a heat-resistant, reflective paint. The wall will still get warm, but you won’t lose nearly as much heat as you would without the reflective surface.

Adjust Your Thresholds

If you have light coming below your doors, then you need to adjust your threshold. Your threshold should have three or four screws that you can turn to lift or lower the threshold. Adjust the threshold until it is in contact with the bottom of your door; you might see a little light coming through the corners, and that’s ok. The door should be able to swing freely. If it gets caught, or drags then the threshold is too high. The threshold should not wear out, but if you find that you can’t adjust your threshold to fit properly, you might need to replace it.

Insulate Your Outlets

Electrical outlets in exterior walls can let in drafts like nobody’s business. You can insulate your electrical outlets yourself, or hire a professional to do it for you.