Wednesday, 6 January 2016

Going under the hammer

Auctions are becoming as increasingly popular way to not only get your property sold, but get it sold at a good price!

The natural competitive nature of humans can get vendors a substantially better sale price! Data from CoreLogic RP Data found that property sold under the hammer consistently beat prices sold via private treaty.  In some of the more 'auction-friendly' suburbs the difference can be as big as 20%, houses in Doubleview average $770k at private treaty but $930k at auction!  

Perth Real Estate agent Mark Passmore says that the competition that auctions create tend to make sure property as priced correctly, especially in this current buyer’s property market. Homes with stylish and unique features are especially going well under the hammer, with buyers feeling the rush and impulse that an auction can bring.

While some vendors may look at an auction as a risk that a buyer may not pay the maximum that there were willing too.  The fact is the vendor is always protected by their reserve.  They know how much they are willing to part with their property for and it won’t go for lower than that.  If the reserve isn’t met, it is common for the buyers to be put in contact with the closest bidder so that they can potentially work out a deal.

Auctions are also are great way to get a quicker sale.  Realmark managing director John Percudani said that now Perth property was taking an average of 70 days to sell, vendors should seriously consider the option.  One Perth vendor sold his Mandurah property at auction for $2.5million after having his home on the market for more than a year!  Mark Passmore says that it can create a buzz about a property that has been previously hard to sell.  Buyers at an auction will generally also have easy access finance or cash, which means that settlement can come quick and vendors get their money quick!

Vendors and agents are now even starting to experiment with auctions often occuring on Sundays and even weekdays!  Traditionally auctions are a Saturday event, but there has been a change in this trend, with Sundays especially showing a spike.  One auctioneer said that if your property looks great in the twilight… why not take advantage of this and have your auction on a weekday in the evening?

The market is currently in the buyer’s hands and vendors need to do what they can to get the best possible price for their property.  Auctions are hot at the moment, so take advantage and get your property sold!

Nick Boehm

Thursday, 5 November 2015

Perth market priming for investors – Make sure you MAXIMISE your results


The Perth market currently presents an excellent opportunity for potential investors.

If you’re a first time investor, make sure you know the tricks of the trade! We looked a few ways to make sure your investment property shows some great returns


  • Go with what you know

Try to avoid buying in areas you are unfamiliar with, buying in an area you know gives you an advantage in seeing value.  You know where the all the schools and shops are, you know how busy or quiet a street is, you may even know what the neighbours are like! 
Going to a new area may at times seem appealing, but when you are uninformed, you have a distinct disadvantage when negotiating price.  If you do want to head into the unknown, then make sure you do your research!!!


  • Get the property ready to rent

Investment properties can be an excellent source of cash flow, but you have to have tenants for that flow to come!  Buying in a good area, on a big block or getting a bargain price might have great potential for capital gain; but if you are looking for cash flow, then you should ask yourself the question of would you live here?
Check the condition and age of the facilities of the home, as good as an area might be, not many people like living in a house with a run-down bathroom or kitchen.  Consider putting a little bit of money into the property to be able to charge higher rent!


  • Crunch the numbers

Make sure you know exactly how much money is going in to this investment! More importantly, make sure you are getting financial gain out of it!  It is not as black and white as the property price, interest repayments and monthly rent.  There are always extra costs involved: Council rates, property management and settlement costs to name a few.  They are unavoidable but in some circumstances can be minimised. 
Settlement cost is a good example.  Make sure you get bang for your buck! Don’t just use who your Real Estate agent or broker recommends, you can save hundreds, even thousands of dollars by getting a few different quotes.


These are just three things to consider when purchasing an investment property.  There are many tips, tricks and theories behind investing in Real Estate.  Find the right property and it will be a good move!

“Real Estate investing, even on a small scale, remains a tried and true means of building an individual’s cash flow and wealth”  -  Robert Kiyosaki

Don’t let this current buyer’s market pass you by!!

Nick Boehm

Thursday, 8 October 2015

Times are tough? More like time to buy!

It’s no secret that the Western Australian property market has seen better days

The mining industry has slowed, consumers are spending less, house prices have fallen and confidence has dropped - Perhaps is it time to buy property in Perth?

Many would be quick to jump on the bandwagon tell you that you were daft for even asking the question.

However, many of Australia’s leading property experts would beg to differ.

“In Perth, it's a classic case of confidence being below fundamentals." says Gavin Hegney, of Hegney Property Group.

“I think there's less far risk of buying into Perth today than buying into the Sydney market… the downside risk in Perth is limited”

"At some stage in the next 12 months it will be the perfect buying market in Perth."

Confidence is key! West Aussies should try not to consistently think negatively and trick themselves into a recession. The jobs that the mining and construction booms created have not all evaporated, many permanent jobs were created 

“The long term, the outlook for WA isn’t bad!”  According to Momentum Wealth director David Collins. Population may have slowed but we still have the fastest-growing population rate in the country. The market has always had cycles and we are just in a low point. The cycle will go back up!

Some say the low point of the cycle may have already been reached data shows that Perth’s overall sales number increased nine per cent to 616 sales across the week ending 6 October. This is the first upturn in sales reported for quite some time and can mainly be attributed to a significant 52 per cent increase in total land sales and a 21 per cent increase in unit sales. House sales also lifted across the week, by a more modest one per cent.

So don’t think that you can’t go near the property market in the current state of the market. With motivation, confidence and some good research you find yourself a great investment property or a bargain dream home!

Whilst you’re saving money on the buying property, you might as well save money on the fees involved too. Settlement fees state wide have dropped, with agencies such as Vicki Philipoff Settlements offering some incredibly great rates to finalise your property transaction.

Before you know it the whole state will be on the buy-buy-buy bandwagon again, it’s the people who make smart moves now that will come out on top

- Nick Boehm 

Monday, 11 November 2013

Settlements Made Simple.

Buying and selling a property can be complicated, especially the settlement process! That’s why we’re here to make things simple, and ensure you settle with ease.

Seller’s Settlement Made Simple.

1.    When signing the contract of sale, write ‘Vicki Philipoff Settlements’ in the conveyancer panel.
2.    The real estate agent will send a copy of the contract to our office.
3.    You will be sent the initial settlement documents for signing and then returned to us.  The verification of identity forms will need to be completed at the Australian post office, or in our  office.
4.    Please make sure that any special conditions on the Contract of sale have been fulfilled by the due  date.
5.    Once the contract becomes unconditional we will notify you and your real estate agent, so that the  settlement process can move forward.
6.    If you have a mortgage on the property you will be required to complete the discharge of mortgage  documents with your bank as soon as possible.  (Please note banks can take around 20 days to  process the documents for settlement.)
7.    If you hold in your possession the original Certificate of Title document, this will need to be provided  to us.
8.    The purchaser is entitled to their final inspection of the property. Please make sure that the property is  in the same condition as it was when the buyer originally inspected the property, and that all items  included in the contract are in good working order.
9.    A settlement time is booked with all parties at a mutually convenient time, and we attend settlement  on your behalf.
10.  As soon as settlement is effected we will call you, deposit any funds to your bank account if required,  and then send you out your final settlement statement confirming the distribution of funds!
11.  Possession of the property by the purchaser will normally be at 12 noon the day following settlement  when the property you sold is the principal place of residence.

Buyer’s Settlement Made Simple.

1.    When signing the contract of sale write ‘Vicki Philipoff Settlements’ in the conveyancer panel.
2.    We will receive the contract from your real estate agent once the offer has been accepted.
3.    Make sure the deposit for purchase is paid to the real estate agency on time.
4.    You will be sent the initial settlement documents for signing which will include the stamp duty and  first home owner documents forms where applicable. These will need to be completed and sent  back to us.
5.    If your contract is subject to finance approval, contact your bank or finance broker. Provide any  information they require and notify us as soon as your finance is approved and supply your letter of  approval to us.
6.    Sign the relevant mortgage documents with your bank or broker as soon as possible (Please note  banks can take around 20 days to process the documents for settlement).
7.    Make sure that any special conditions on the contract have been met by their due date. For example  - termite clearance, building inspections etc.
8.    Stamp duty payment may be payable prior to settlement.
9.    A settlement statement will be issued stating the money required in order to effect settlement, including  stamp duty and adjustments.
10.  You are entitled to make a final inspection of the property prior to settlement with the real estate  agent. This is an opportunity to ensure the property is in the same condition as when initially inspected.
11.  We will call you as soon as settlement is effected, deposit any surplus funds to your bank account and  send you the final settlement statement!
12.  Possession of the property will normally be given at 12 noon the day following settlement
13.  The certificate of title will take time to process at Landgate. We will send a copy to you, showing  you as the registered proprietor for your records approximately 12 weeks after settlement.

First Home Owners Grant Made Simple.

1.    First home Owner Grant Cap:
The cap limits the total value of properties to $750,000 or less, or if the home is located north of the 26th parallel to $1,000,000 or less

2.    First Home Owners Grant:
$10,000 - Building a new home
$3,000 - Established home

Your financier will be arranging and collecting the first home owners grant; this will be used to reduce the purchase price of your property. If you are paying cash for the purchase of your property you will need to claim the first home owners grant from the Office of State Revenue after settlement has been completed.

3.    First Home owners Stamp Duty Concession:
Homes under $500,000 = No stamp duty
Homes under $600,000 = Reduced Duty
Homes over $600,000 = Normal stamp duty

Please contact us for more information or visit:

Final Settlement Inspection Made Simple.

Here is a rough checklist of some things to look out for while making your final settlement inspection.

      1.    Electrical and systems
·         Smoke alarms (Contact us)
·         RCD Safety switches (Contact us)
·         Main electrical switch board location
·         Water mains
·         Hot water System
·         Lighting
·         Air-conditioning & remotes
·         Celling Fans & remotes
·         Gas ducting / meter
·         Heating & remotes
·         Powerpoints
·         TV antennas and ducts
·         Telephone/Internet lines
·         Intercom
·         Ducted audio / hi-fi system
·         Security system & codes

      2.    Utilities, appliances, fixtures
·         Current utility company for Electricity, Gas, Telephone, Water
·         Storage, closets, wardrobes, linen cupboards, cellar, attic, garden/pool shed
·         Security keys, locks
·         Bathroom - Bathtub, shower heads, basins, tapware, toilets
·         Kitchen - fridge, freezers, dishwasher, microwave, oven, stove-top, rangehood.
·         Laundry – washing machine, dryer, laundry sink, clothes lines
·         Fireplace – gas heaters and maintenance
·         Collection days for - Garbage, Recycling, verge side pick up
·         Gardening, lawn mowing and landscaping
·         Paperwork for appliances under warranty

      3.    Structural and internal fittings
·         Roof tiles, roof gutters, down spouts, splash blocks
·         Wall paint – scratches, cracks, nicks etc.
·         Tiles - floor / wall
·         Windows and door seals
·         Glass doors and windows
·         Ceiling and floor skirting
·         Carpet installation and seams
·         Floor surfaces & floor surfaces under furniture
·         Ceiling height
·         Wooden floors, outdoor wooden decks
·         Wood joinery
·         Bench / countertops
·         Water damage? Cabinets/Ceilings/Walls
·         Council approved structures

      4.    Other
·         Front Gate & Remotes
·         Garage Door & Remotes
·         Reticulation
·         Council approved pool / Spa area fence
·         Pool/Spa equipment and maintenance
·         Pool/Spa pumps

Moving Checklist Made Simple.

Have you notified the following business, departments and contacts of your new address following settlement?

1.    Business

·         Bank, Credit Cards, Mortgage, Accountant
·         Insurance (Life, car, household etc.)
·         Superannuation Fund
·         Employer

2.    Government Departments

·         Electoral Office
·         Post Office
·         Pensions
·         Centrelink
·         Taxation Office
·         Licensing Centre (Driver’s license)
·         Boat or other Licenses
·         Medicare

3.    Local Government

·       Council Rates (Contact Us)
·       Library
·       Dog & Cat Registration & License

4.    Other

·       Gas Company
·       Electricity
·       Water Rates (Contact us)
·       St Johns Ambulance
·       Phone provider
·       Internet provider

5.    Personal

·       Club memberships (sporting, social, RAC)
·       School
·       Friends & Relatives
·       Newspaper delivery
·       Doctors & Dentist
·       Subscriptions
·       Blood Bank
·       Vet
·       Lawn mowing Contractor

While every effort has been made for this to be as simple as possible, we strongly recommend that you contact us should you have any specific queries concerning any matters relating to your transaction.

You have a right for our Conveyancer act in your best interest at all times. These rights are detailed in the Appointment to Act (Form 1) document and, where applicable, the Disclosure of Interest document (Form 2).

Please remember you have an obligation to bring to your Conveyancers’ attention any matters that you think may affect your interests in the transaction. This is especially important where the Conveyancer prepares financial information on your behalf, which you think is incorrect, or where you intend to vary the settlement date or take early possession of the property.

If you have any further questions, or seek advice please don’t hesitate to contact us,

Monday, 14 November 2011

A new system for resolving building complaints in Western Australia

The most significant reform to building legislation in Western Australia in over 50 years has recently taken place. The new Act came into operation on the 29th August, 2011.

We now have a new two stage system , involving the newly established Building Commissioner and the State Administrative Tribunal (SAT).

Under the new system the following types of complaints may be made to the Building Commissioner:

• By any person regarding a ‘regulated building service’ not being carried out in a ‘proper and proficient person and home building work. Any person adversely affected by the work may make a complaint, for example neighbours or subcontractors, as well as owners.

• An owner or builder about a breach of a home building work contract (provided that the contract is not a cost plus contract and the contract sum is between $7,500 and $500,000).

The time limit for making a complaint remains unchanged, with a complaint required to be commenced within 6 years of completion of the work.

The SAT replaces the former Building Disputes Tribunal for the formal hearing of building complaints and may either dismiss a complaint or make a Building Remedy Order or Home Building Contracts Order.

The Building Commissioner or, if the matter is referred, the SAT, may make a Building Remedy Order requiring a person to:
• Remedy the works within a reasonable time;
• Pay the costs of someone else remedying the works; or
• Pay compensation.

The amount of compensation or value of the work that can be awarded by the Building Commissioner is limited to $100,000. If a higher amount is considered appropriate the matter must be referred to the SAT. If a complaint is made against an unregistered person the SAT cannot order payment or work to be done in excess of $500,000. However, there is no such limit on the amount of an order that the SAT may make against a registered service provider, such as a registered builder.

This information was gleaned from the Property Council of Australia and Vicki Philipoff Settlements is proud to be a member.

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

FESA bushfire memos for renters and owners

The recent Keelty Report into bushfires in the Perth hills identified that tenants living in bushfire prone zones were at higher risk than owner occupiers.

As the bushfire season in Western Australia is now upon us, it is time for those at risk to understand the risk so that decisions can be made now about what actions will be taken if a bushfire starts.

REIWA has liaised with FESA to produce two brochures targeted at people at higher levels of risk.

FESA and REIWA request that tenants living in bushfire prone zones be given the brochure 'Renting and bushfires, are you prepared?'.

The second brochure, 'How prepared is your rental property for bushfire?' is targeted at landlords who own an investment property in a bushfire zone.

This third document highlights a 'list of suburbs' that are deemed to be bushfire prone.

FESA will be mailing these brochures to agents with offices located in these zones.

This information has been supplied by REIWA and may help to prevent a bushfire and hopefully to save lives.

Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Social Media success in your Business: The Facebook basics. By Kieran McErlean

So why social media? This is a must see video into how social media is taking over the world. Did you know that 40% of Australians have a Facebook account?
If you’re setting up a Facebook page for your business you need to look into the reasons behind having it. Start of by asking yourself the questions that make sense:

Why would people visit your page?

What demographic are you targeting?

Why would people return to your page?

Why would people become a fan of your page?

How and why would people go from fans to customers?

Give your Fan what they want! The best way to market your business is to put yourself in the shoes of the consumer, why would YOU visit a business Facebook page? Offer discounts on your products/services to Facebook fans. At Vicki Philipoff Settlements we have a monthly Facebook prize give away. The competition is a low cost strategy (around $50 a month) and it’s very easy to enter which becomes an incentive for the user. Update status to tell your Fans why you’re the company to choose over your competitors.

At VPS we use a “Tag to win” styled competition, why? When you have been tagged in a photo, all the friends in your network can see that tagged photo of you. By getting our fans to tag themselves in our photos, their networked friends will see this too. This is going to have a marketing mushroom effect on the Facebook community between friends. Even when the competition is over people usually will remain tagged in the photos; this is good free marketing for your business. (Remember to place your logo in your tagged picture to increase brand awareness, it makes it easier than reading the description under the picture.)

Why would fans come back to our page? We have new competition and therefore a new prize to win each month. Check out our August competition:!/media/set/?set=a.268911923123447.85575.204311766250130&type=1

You’ve established a fan page but it’s not going anywhere, or you feel like you’re talking to no one? Make sure you have staff/office photos up on your Facebook, for people that aren’t familiar with your business this creates more trust. Show your business isn’t just some made up internet scam. Showing faces gives your business personality – ask any successful Real-Estate Agent how important that is.

Picking your time to post on the news feed is important. If your fan is a fan of other pages, it’s not going to stay on their feed for long! So you want to pick a time to reach your fan, just think when people use Facebook the most 9-11am isn’t usually going to be the most effective in the typical 9-5pm work day. Try posts at 12-2pm during lunch breaks or 6-9pm when people log-in at home.

On your page relevant clear contact information is vital. You don’t want your viewers having to search for a way to contact your business; this is an easy way to make sure you never hear from them!

But how is my business going to get out there? Post your competition on free competition pages like the following:!/perthcompsonfb

Also post on other pages with large fan bases E.g. “I love Perth”, or “Perth real-estate” any page that has a potential fan for you. With Facebook it is so easy to locate your target market fans, so make the most of this. Just don’t bombard/spam though, the consumer can see through this too e.g. Posting your real estate page everywhere possible just to get your name out may not to do much good, rather it can annoy people.

Construct a welcome screen – you can do this with a number of free Facebook applications – Remember you want to tell people why they want to like your page:!/vickiphilipoffsettlements?sk=app_201143516562748

Make effort to use good quality images, not blurry pixelated ones – this looks lazy and unprofessional. Make sure your display picture is clear; this is going to be your first impression to your future fans/customers. We all know the saying about first impressions..

You’re going to get good feedback and eventually you’re going to get bad feedback. Bad feedback doesn’t mean you press the delete button as soon as you see it. Instead Step back relax and try and rectify the situation with a reply, write a comment that is going to help the fan; make their negative experience more positive. People viewing your page will appreciate your effort into fixing the problem; this is customer service at its best.

Remember to be patient you’re not creating a Facebook page with 1000+ fans because you are expecting 1000+ customer, you want people to become fond of your brand, you want a relationship with your Facebook user so that when they come to the day of selecting a product/service your company will already be in the back of their head.

Who is your competition and what are they doing? Don’t be scared to have a look around Facebook at other pages, whether it’s other success story pages, or your direct competitor. Remember to have fun and be creative!

If you want any additional information/an electronic copy with links, have any questions or feedback please email me on

Kieran McErlean

Vicki Philipoff’s Marketing Manager.