Article written by Nardine Collier
Family Lawyer Cairns & Alice Springs
Selling the family home following a separation is often a reality. Like any sale, you want to maximise your sale price.
It is also important to work with an agent who understands that their clients are separated – and it may not be easy to get joint decisions about the sale! The agent will need to be prepared to work with both owners, i.e. husband and wife, separately, and makes sure that each person is involved in making a decision. Often the agent needs to navigate the tensions of separated couples and try and get them to reach an agreement on the sale.
I always suggest to clients that if they can’t agree on an aspect of the sale- that they should agree beforehand to let the agent make the final decision. Bear in mind – the agent also wants the quickest sale at the best possible price!
I contacted Zoe Wicks, an experienced agent who has recently moved back into the Edge Hill area – for her perspective and expert advice on how to sell your property when you have separated:
“When I’m working with a couple who are separating, I’m always very sensitive to the situation and the emotions that are felt by both parties. I am very diligent with my communication; ensuring I keep both parties well informed and that all communication is equal and non-biased. It’s important that both parties feel supported and understood, and that they feel safe in my hands – receiving good, solid professional advice.
Having a strong leadership approach is important when selling a property for a separated couple, as delays in agreement can negatively affect the sale outcome.
Often these properties may have been neglected because both parties have moved out, or there have been disputes with money, a shortage of money, or sometimes purely from the owners dealing with the overwhelm of emotions and life changes. Amongst everything else they are having to deal with – the home maintenance falls on the wayside. I take a lot of time and care in helping to best prepare the home for sale behind the scenes, before we go to market. This process can often be quite long and challenging (depending on the situation), but is absolutely essential in achieving the highest possible price for the owners.
Right now, the property market wheels are still turning; they may be turning slower, but they are still turning. Having a roof over our heads is essential, we still need places to live, to call home – for each new chapter and season of our lives.
I’m definitely feeling that with the advent of what’s happening in the world- people are reassessing their values, favouring less populated areas, healthier environments, nature & self-sustainability, lifestyle, and warmer climates- which are all positives for us living in Cairns.
I feel there is a renewed interest in Cairns from southern & international buyers for these reasons. The simple life has come back into fashion; be that by forced external factors combined with new internal drivers. First home buyers have a strong presence in the market as there are good value properties to be snapped up, coupled with low interest rates and Government loan incentives. Second or third home buyers are in the market as well- they are taking their time to buy, but jumping when they find a property they love. Investors are also looking to buy property in the Cairns area, as the return on investments are still very competitive and better then what the banks can offer- even with the downward pressure on rental prices. The low entry level prices allow investors to spread their risk.”
It is great to hear that in Zoe’s opinion- the property market is still viable, and it is possible to get a good price for your property! For more tips, check out Zoe Wicks Real Estate’s 101 tips to maximise your sales price here.
With thanks to: Zoe Wicks, LREA | Zoe Wicks Real Estate | Ph: 0477 114 778 | Email: email@example.com
Nardine Collier is a Nationally Accredited Mediator and has been mediating Family Law disputes for over 25 years. She is a Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner, a Family Law Arbitrator, a panel Mediator for various Australia wide organisations and for courts and tribunals. Nardine regularly mediates at Legal Aid conferences in Family Law, in Cairns and Alice Springs. She is also the Cairns Representative of the Queensland Chapter of the Resolution Institute of Australia.