Looking at buying a home? If you keep coming up against issues, then it might be time to enlist the expert help of a Buyers Agent!
I’ll be honest. It wasn’t until recently that I fully understood what a Buyer’s Agent does. My only exposure to the concept had been from the reality show The Block… watching agents bid for the clients at auction, with a phone pressed firmly against their ear. I assumed that these agents were only for the rich, the people far too busy to go out and look for their own properties. I never thought that someone like me would use a Buyers Agent.
I first met Henny Stier from OH Property Group two years ago through a North Shore Mums dinner at Noodle Blast in Killara. She was a new mum with a little baby, and also a Buyer’s Agent. I nodded politely, asked a few questions, but still didn’t really understand what they did. Soon after, Henny offered to become an admin for the NSM Facebook group and during this time I have come to know her well, and now consider her to be a trusted friend.
Henny knows everything there is to know about buying property… what to look for in a house, what to avoid, what suburbs are best, indeed what streets are best, and how to get the most pleasing outcome regardless of circumstances. Whenever someone posts a property-related question in the NSM Facebook group, Henny is always very happy to share her knowledge and give specific advice.
I have worked with Henny on several property seminars for North Shore Mums, where she shares her tops tips for buying or renovating property on the north shore. The seminars are always fully booked and get fantastic feedback. As I knew we would be buying a house in the not-so-distant future, I always soaked up her recommendations like a sponge: buy on the high side of the street, focus on quality of land rather than quantity, and countless other advice.
When we made the decision to buy, Henny generously offered any assistance we might need to choose the right home. Henny started out with a thorough discussion and analysis of our needs versus our budget. She was very quickly able to eliminate a lot of suburbs and properties so that we did not have to waste time inspecting houses that are likely to go above our budget or would be unsuitable for one reason or another.
As most house hunters know, the current real estate market is extremely competitive. Prices are skyrocketing. Given the level of competition, it’s not enough to have a deposit and a mortgage approved. You have to be extremely tactical in the way you deal with selling agents and put forward offers or bid at Auction.
It is a sellers market. The buyer is at the complete mercy of the agent, who carefully plays each interested party to get the best price for their vendor. Of course… that is their job. It is not their mandate to help the purchaser get a good price. It seems unfair that sellers should have real estate experts representing them but the buyers do not. The Sydney real estate market is so skewed in favour of the sellers, that a Buyers Agent can really help to level the playing field.
After viewing well over 50 properties across the upper north shore, we finally found the house that ticked the most important boxes and would serve us well for the next 10 years or more. We had to have it! Unfortunately, it was ‘offers over’, and our maximum budget was $15k lower than the price guideline. There was no way we could stretch the budget any more.
Henny appraised the property and devised a bold strategy based on our budget restriction. Every step of the negotiation process was strategically crafted and every action very deliberate. A big part of Henny’s job is understanding psychology. She understands not only how buyers think but also how the vendor, selling agent and even competing buyers think. It was like watching a chess game unfold and Henny was able to think several steps ahead and take control of the negotiation process. Instead of being pushed around and dictated by the selling agent, it was nice to be in the driver’s seat for a change. In a seller’s market, this is no mean feat! It felt great to be able to negotiate with confidence.
The agent was playing a lot of games and I was a nervous wreck! But Henny reassured me that she knows the game the agent is playing and believed we were in with a very good chance. At one point, the agent wanted more money and we were prepared to meet her demands just to get the deal done and have it over with. But Henny stopped us and said it was not necessary. I wasn’t so sure, but completely trusted that she knew what was going on at the other end, given the number of negotiations she has done for clients. Henny was right and our offer was accepted! The house was ours. We had ‘won’ against the agent!
This is just one example of the help that Henny gave us over our four-month search. Her property knowledge is just astounding and regardless of your budget or requirements, she is able to tailor a strategy for every client and purchase. I’ve come to realise that buying a property is not as easy as just picking out the one you want. That’s only the first step. It can all be won or lost at the negotiation stage. There is such a fine balance between paying high enough to secure the property versus paying more than you need to. Henny walks this tightrope every day.
What I love about Henny is that she gets straight to the point, and doesn’t waste any time. She knows the Sydney property market intimately…. and most importantly, she understands the tactics used by Real Estate Agents. She is worth her weight in gold. Without her advice and guidance, there is no way we would have secured the house that is now our home. Not only did she save us at least $15,000, she also ensured we got the home we want.
Thank you Henny, from the bottom of my heart!
About Henny Stier, OH Property Group
Henny Stier has been running OH Property Group with her husband Oliver, since 2008. A respected property expert, Henny specialises in the search, analysis, appraisal, negotiation, bidding and purchase of properties across all price ranges throughout Sydney. She is a long-time resident of the North Shore and mum to two boys. She has written many articles for the North Shore Mums website about buying and selling property, which you can browse through here.
If you want to get some insider knowledge about the property market, make sure you ‘like’ the OH Property Group Facebook page.