Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Over 600 house auctions took place in Melbourne over the weekend of 22-23 September before vendors put their feet up for the AFL grand final. Peter Travlos, sales manager with Ray White Taylors Lakes, told Neos Kosmos that the weekend would see this year’s greatest activity to date in the auction market. “It’s going to be a busy one,” said Travlos, whose company had three properties under the hammer on the Saturday. “The peak is partly caused by some stability in terms of interest rates, and a feeling from vendors that spring is the best time to put their homes on the market.” “In recent months sales have been fairly stable in most areas we cover”, says Travlos, whose company offered three properties for auction ranging from between $350,000 to $800,000 or more. “They’re all new to the market and I’m confident two will sell at or above their reserve price, but the one at the top end might not, we’ll see.” With the issue of sales agents who underquote receiving attention once again in recent weeks, Travlos says that while some agents are well known for such practices, the majority of agents stay within the guidelines. “We try and give a variable based on comparables within ten per cent. “The hardest thing for any agent is, if on the day, a couple of people are keen to pay a figure, and it exceeds our quote range, that’s something no one can control,” says Travlos, who maintains that the issue of underquoting isn’t as straightforward as reports suggest. “We might quote a property at $400,000 to $440,000 but someone may have a budget to spend of 460,000, and when it’s sold on the day for that figure, then everyone who missed out has a go at the agent saying it has been underquoted.” Travlos says that greater numbers of vendors are choosing to auction because it’s a short campaign. “It gives people a cut off date, and the terms and conditions are more secure for vendors.” Peter’s advice to those heading out to bid for a new home is “make sure your finance is approved and that you have the ten per cent deposit on the day. Those are the basics.”The Real Estate Institute of Victoria reported a clearance rate of 64 per cent over the weekend of 22-23 September, saying that it continued the trend this spring of the clearance rate being consistently a few points higher than the same time last year. There were 624 auctions over the weekend, with 401 selling and 223 being passed in, 141 of those on a vendor bid.