Monday 15 March 2021


Auctions! For some people it’s a scary idea, for others it’s a huge thrill! There are several different ways to buy and sell a property including “Private Treaty”, the “Off-Market Sale” and “Expressions of Interest”, but Auctions seem to be going extremely well in SA at the moment. Current clearance rates (which means properties sold at Auction and not passed in) for February are showing numbers around 80% to 90%. So, should you consider an auction?

Here are a few facts to keep in mind:

  • The campaign usually runs for 3 to 4 weeks from the first open to the actual auction day.
  • The process is completely transparent on auction day meaning you know exactly how many people are interested, who is bidding and how much they are offering.
  • Offers can be made before the auction. How they are received can depend on the Agent and the Vendor. If the Agent and/or Vendor is confident that the property will sell at auction, they may refuse to look at offers prior.
  • Buyers need to know exactly what their borrowing amount is before bidding as it’s a “cash unconditional contract”. The contract cannot be “subject to finance” or “subject to sale” or “subject to building and pest inspections”.
  • Buyers need to complete things like building and pest inspections prior to auction day as there is no “cooling off” period and as stated above, no “subject to”
  • 10% deposit is required at the fall of the hammer unless negotiated prior to the auction with the Agent.
  • You can employ a Real Estate Agent to bid on your behalf which may help with stopping you from bidding with your emotions.

As with anything, there are good and bad points to every method of sale – it is best to do your research and pick the method that works best for you. Always keep in mind that the “best result” is a quick sale for the best possible price and knowing if it is currently a “sellers’ market” or a “buyers’ market” and how quickly properties are selling, should be a deciding factor on which method of sale you use.

If you would like more information on any sale methods, please call one of our helpful team members for a confidential chat!

(08) 8251 3249

Tuesday 16 February 2021


 Welcome to the first in our series of “What Do They Do?” where we explain why you need the team of professionals who will assist you with buying and selling property.

Once you sign a Contract of Sale, your real estate agent will ask for your conveyancer. A conveyancer is a licensed and qualified professional who can:

  • provide information and advice about the sale or purchase of property
  • prepare legal documentation for property transactions
  • represent either the vendor or the buyer during the settlement process.

Conveyancers are not legal practitioners, but conveyancing work can be undertaken by solicitors. It is strongly recommended that you engage professionals due to the complex legal nature of the work involved. Conveyancers will:

  • prepare and clarify legal documents, such as, contract of sale, memorandum of transfer
  • conduct research about the property and its certificate of title - eg checking for easements, type of title
  • represent you in preparing for and during settlement
  • place and hold deposit money in a trust account
  • calculate the adjustment of rates and taxes when buying or selling a property
  • liaise with the vendor or buyer's conveyancer over settlement arrangements
  • contact you to advise when settlement or subdivision is complete
  • contact your financial institution, if applicable, regarding how and when the final payments are to be made and received
  • lodge all necessary documents with the relevant agencies

Your conveyancer should look over all your legal documentation during the “cooling off” period (which in South Australia is two full clear business days after the Form 1 documentation has been issued) and advise you of any concerns.

Besides buying and selling a home, a conveyancer can also assist with land subdivision and also updating name details on the certificate of title of a property you already own eg. after a divorce, death or a marriage.

It is so important to find a good conveyancer. Ask friends and family for recommendations, or even ask us! We work alongside conveyancers every day and will happily refer a list of reputable businesses in our area. If you need any assistance with choosing a conveyancer, please do not hesitate to contact us.

(08) 8251 3249

Thursday 1 October 2020

What to Look for When Buying an Investment Property

 A good investment property is one that leases quickly and for a good rental return. To ensure that your property is leased quickly, it needs to match what tenants are looking for. Some of these things include:

 · Heating and cooling options - things like ceiling fans, gas wall heaters, split systems, ducted reverse cycle air-conditioning. Ideally you should look for at least ducted cooling in your potential investment property.

· Storage - particularly built-in robes are a key point that tenants are looking for. If they are coming from a property with built in robes to one without, then buying wardrobes is a major expense that most don’t want to consider. Also a good-sized linen cupboard is highly desirable.

· Four bedrooms - depending of course on the area that you’re looking to buy your investment in, but in family oriented areas, four bedroom homes are in huge demand and achieve a much higher rental return. If it is in your budget, then we highly recommend looking at this option. Of course, closer to the city, your demographic is generally young singles so the four bedroom option is not so crucial.

· Safe, quiet neighbourhood - when you’re looking to buy your next investment, take a good look at the neighbouring houses - maybe do a drive-by at night time and/or on the weekends and see how much activity there is. If you want a high quality, long-term tenant, then a nice neighbourhood is crucial. You will still get tenants at the property, but they will all be short-term as they don’t want to stay too long.

What else should I consider?

It is extremely rare to find an investment property where the rental income covers the mortgage repayments 100% and even then, there will always be other expenses like maintenance and repairs. From our experience, the way to profit from an investment property is to hold onto it long-term to make profit from the eventual sale of the property. But the property needs to be well-maintained during its lifetime too - meaning you can’t allow the property to become run down.

Becoming an investor is a long-term strategy, not a “get rich quick” scheme. Always speak to your financial advisor to check your unique circumstances.

 “Smith Partners Real Estate is not a financial adviser. You should consider seeking independent legal, financial, taxation or other advice to check how this information relates to your unique circumstances.”

For further advice contact our friendly property management team:

Tim Hines 

Property Manager

M: 0412 754 117

Emma Irving 

Accounts & Leasing Manager

M: 0488 226 624



Thursday 10 September 2020


Home cleaning and springtime go hand in hand! This is the season when countless homeowners turn their houses upside down to get rid of junk and deep clean the interiors and exteriors of their home. However, during this cleaning haul, the home maintenance aspect is completely overlooked. Hence, spring cleaning should always be combined with spring home maintenance! Here are some things to consider maintaining in preparation for the warmer months:

  •  Touch up chipped paint

Whether it’s your walls or furniture, as you start cleaning up and moving things around, you’ll notice a few chips in some paint jobs. As small and unnoticeable as they may be, this will only lead to more peeling and eventually leave you with a tougher job of covering it up.

  • Clean and service your air conditioner

Over the winter season, your AC will have collected dust which can clog your filters and vents. Worst of all, this dust and debris become airborne when you switch the unit on, causing allergies and the likes. Therefore, you should clean and service all your air conditioners when spring begins or have a professional do it for you.

  •  Clean your dishwasher

This task is often overlooked when spring cleaning the rest of your home, yet it is very much necessary for proper functioning of the appliance. Moreover, a dirty dishwasher is unsanitary to say the least! Deep cleaning of your dishwasher can be done in 4, easy steps: 1) remove chunks or debris from around the drain; 2) place a bowl of 1 cup of white distilled vinegar inside and run an entire cycle; 3) remove the cup, sprinkle half a cup of baking soda at the bottom and run a short, hot cycle; 4) when the interiors cool down, wipe the inside with a clean, damp cloth.

  • Maintain your yard/garden

Spring is a time where you can find both, dried up leaves and unwanted weeds growing in your garden. Use this time to maintain your yard by trimming hedges and bushes, mowing the lawn and fertilising your plants.

  • Clean and check fly screens

Spring is the perfect time to let plenty of fresh air into your home. Make sure your screens are clean to limit the dirt and dust coming inside. Also make sure that there is no damage to the screens which will allow the dreaded flies and mozzies in!

Friday 7 August 2020

Home Loan Pre-Approval

 When you decide that you would like to buy a property, it’s difficult to know where to start. While looking at property online can be exciting and daydreaming about what you can afford can be a bit of fun, it’s only a daydream until you take the first step of getting a pre-approval for the home loan.

Pre-approval is when a mortgage broker or your bank give you conditional approval on how much you could possibly borrow for a home loan. To assess this, you don’t need to have a property in mind, you will only need to answer some basic questions on your current income and expenses.

Make sure that you have your numbers as accurate as possible as you will need to prove it later down the track to get your home loan formally approved. Don’t try to hide anything because the truth will come out and cause issues if you want to go ahead with the home loan.

Once you have provided the relevant information, your home loan pre-approval provides a clear amount that you can afford to spend on your future property. This information means you know what price range to start looking at online and not get your heart set on a property that is beyond your budget.

Having a pre-approval also gives a real estate agent and the vendor of any property you’re interested in more confidence that the sale will go through. Without a pre-approval, your offer is viewed as a riskier option than one with it.

Keep in mind with your pre-approval that any changes with your financial circumstances will affect the chances of a formal approval once you find a property you wish to purchase. Major life-changing events like job changes, reduction in hours or going out and starting your own business will all mean getting a home loan will be more difficult and your pre-approval is no longer valid.

Once you find a property to buy and put your offer in, you will have to go through the process of getting your home loan formally approved which will include providing documentation to support your claims of income and expenses.

Getting a pre-approval shouldn’t cost anything and from our experience, we advise going to a highly recommended mortgage broker rather than just going to the bank you’ve always banked with. Unfortunately, the days of banks rewarding their customers for their loyalty are long gone. To get the best deal and to find the lender that will accommodate your particular financial situation, a mortgage broker is the way to go.

Having said that, you need a good mortgage broker to get the deal done. We have seen clients using a mortgage broker who have had finance declined but then when they use a mortgage broker we recommend; the same clients have their finance approved. If you would like to speak to one of our recommended mortgage brokers, please do not hesitate to contact us.

P: (08) 8251 3249


Sunday 1 March 2020


A question frequently asked by our landlords and clients – “Do I need to get my evaporative air conditioner shut down for Winter?”

There are a few factors that determine if you require an Evaporation Winter shut down.  If your unit is an older system, it will not have a self-cleaning function. This means that water will sit in the sump over the Winter period and as a result, this water will go stagnant and mould and bacteria that thrive in such conditions, could threaten the health and well-being of you and your family.  In addition, exposure to wintry weather could cause the unit’s small hoses attached to the pads to freeze over and burst/split. Replacing these parts can be costly, but most importantly avoided!! Therefore, a crucial step when shutting down your unit for Winter is turning the water off and draining the sump.

If your unit is a newer air conditioning system, it will have a self-cleaning function. This means it will have a valve that drains the water out of the unit once turned off to prevent water sitting in the sump. However, this function does not clean the unit and regular manual cleaning is still required; to ensure that built-up dirt does not damage your system.

If you have an investment property, then a small outlay just before winter and summer each year can save you big dollars down the track on costly repairs or replacement.

For your own home - winter in Adelaide is extremely cold! If your unit doesn’t have a cover or a Winter flap in the dropper, all that freezing air from inside will go straight into your house causing your heating system to work harder.

At Smith Partners Real Estate, we can recommend trusted trades to provide a comprehensive evaporative winter shut down, though following these critical steps:
  • turning the water off to the unit
  • cleaning out the unit
  • flushing the unit out
  • checking all parts for defects
  • isolating the power to the unit
  • fitting the Winter cover (if applicable) or check the Winter Flap is secure in place (if applicable)
We recommend to all our Landlords that a winter shut down should be performed each year to save them on expensive repair costs later down the track. To find out more on how we care for your investment, call Smith Partners Real Estate on (08) 8251 3249 to have a chat with one of our friendly staff.

Tip # 1 - To Help You Get That Rental