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How long does it take to sell a house?

By Emma Smith
It seems everyone has a theory about how long it takes to sell a house, but what’s the reality?

Angus Graham, from Hodges Sandringham in Melbourne, lays out the facts: “On average in Australia, it takes about 30 days from when you take the photos of your home until the date of sale,” he says.

“Once the home has been sold, settlement usually takes between 30 and 120 days, with land sales and sales to developers usually taking longer,” Graham says.

In Graham’s patch in bayside Melbourne, homes sell faster than the average 30 days.

Homes in bayside Melbourne typically sell faster than the average 30 days. Picture:

“This area has been fortunate enough to see clearance rates steady at over 80% for the last few years. This means that a property is generally online and available on the market for a period of roughly 27 days,” he says.

Not only do the costs involved in selling a home fluctuate, the time between deciding to sell, getting a property ready and putting it on the market varies greatly too, Graham adds.

“It usually depends on how much work is needed to get the house presentable and the seller’s individual situation and circumstances,” Graham says.

Some sellers are ready to go immediately, others are not.

“Some people have subconsciously been preparing their home for sale for a period of time, so once they’ve signed with a real estate agent, they are straight away ready to take photos of their home and start the marketing campaign,” he says.

For other vendors, it might take longer to prepare the home. “Some may need styling advice or help with decluttering, painting or trimming down the garden, to make the overall property more presentable,” Graham says.

“I always encourage sellers to get their agent involved as early as possible, as we’re meeting potential buyers on a daily basis.”

Several factors influence how long it takes to get a sale, Graham says.

“Pricing a property correctly can certainly drive more people through the front door and give you a better chance of achieving the desired result in the shortest time possible,” he says.

“I would say the price point, location and type of property are the three main things that will impact the number of buyers interested in the home.”

To increase the change of selling fast, Graham recommends vendors take advice and be realistic.

Pricing a property correctly helps to drive more people through the front door. Picture: Getty

“It’s important to trust your real estate agent and don’t be afraid to ask for advice if you have any questions. You also need to be realistic about the price range, so leave the emotions behind and look at data on similar houses to get an indication of the final sale price.

“Lastly, make sure your home is clean and well presented during all inspections and has that nice and welcoming feel,” Graham says.

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