Sellers Forking Over Cash On Renovations To Sell Houses As The Market Cools Down

Australia’s housing market is cooling down, and, as a result, sellers are turning to companies and sites like and spending thousands of dollars on renovations on their properties in order to appeal to picky buyers.

According to real estate portal’s CEO, Carrie Law, Chinese buyers in the AU are particularly picky, looking for ‘like-new’ properties, while the Chinese owners are more willing than locals to turn to experts like and spend on renovations.

The Chinese, she says, are particularly picky in the AU market; they want a home that’s gorgeous, a home that’ll be the object of envy when they post pictures on the internet. They tend to prefer homes that look as close to brand new as possible.

In the AU, foreign buyers can only buy established, second-hand property if they have Australian residency or have become Australian citizens.

The state and federal governments, concerned the Chinese buyers might drive up prices, implemented several tax changes in 2017, which led to many foreign buyers opting for other locations. Chinese investment in AU real estate dropped by 70% since 2015.

In the Mainland, Chinese keep their investment properties empty to keep them in good shape when it’s time to be sold, with some keeping it as a shell, with no ceilings, floors, walls, or other amenities. Ms. Law says that this is because they’re all about getting the best returns.

Raine& Horne luxury sales agent Matthew Mifsud, who recently sold a $2.3m waterfront apartment in Pyrmont that the owners poured $40,000 into renovating, says that the mindset for owners is that they need to get as many buyers as they can interested; they want the ease and convenience of moving straight in, which is why renovations are becoming more commonplace.

Another agent, Trevor Back says that the current real estate market sees even two-level penthouse apartments, no older than three years old, requiring tens of thousands of dollars worth of work in order to get a good price at an auction, adding that, seeing that properties can sell for millions with the right renovations, which makes the tens of thousands of dollars spent feel insignificant by comparison.