The Spring real estate season has sprung from the blocks, with auctions becoming the talk of the town in Adelaide real estate circles.

No matter how you slice the numbers, house auctions have doubled since the beginning of the season and compared to this time last year.

Historically, auctions have not been a dominant method of sale in South Australia, so how can you prepare to survive the nerves and competition of a house auction without landing yourself in too much debt or out on the street?

So here are some thoughts from a conveyancer’s perspective, on how to prepare properly for an auction.

Be realistic about the price

It’s been heartening to see that the recent changes to the laws around the setting of the reserve price in an auction, seems to have been adopted by the industry smoothly.

We work closely with vendors, purchasers and agents and have heard no horror stories this year, in fact, it has not been raised as a topic, since we heralded the changes back in December 2013, New Year, New Laws in South Australian Real Estate.

What this means is your usual homework around researching house prices, setting budgets and talking to lenders can be done with more confidence these days than ever before. I shared some tips on this recently, Real estate exposed: How to avoid home buyer fever this Spring.

Check the typical auction buyer’s blind spot

Most purchasers who attend an auction have one, glaring blind spot: the contract.

In my opinion, smart purchasers, the ones whose involvement in auctions are NOT likely to end in tears, are the ones who seek counsel before auction day.

I’m proud to say the my team has been trusted by a number of property buyers to review the Contract and Form 1 prior to them bidding on a property.

What this precaution offers is the opportunity for us to point out any possible issues or details they may wish to do more research on to give them more comfort when bidding.

Remember, there is NO cooling off period for houses bought at auction, so when the bidding starts, you are competing in the market with no safety net.

As always, I will argue that it’s never too early to forge relationships with trusted advisers in all aspect of your life and I believe a conveyancer is one of those specialists.

Happy house hunting.