Viewing by month: January 2015

Stay ahead of the pack

One of the most important aspects of any job is to continually show your value above your competitors. Below are three tips to keep you ahead of the pack, and cemented as the number one real estate agent in your local area.

Show commitment and consistency.

It might take years for someone to decide to sell or buy a house, but if you have shown that you are committed and consistent, your chances of winning the listing and selling it increase substantially. However, your commitment won’t mean much to your clients unless they can actually see it. This is why it’s important to actively take a number of different steps to stay front of mind in your local area.

One option could be to make contact with your local media – a friendly property editor in the local newspaper can really be worth their weight in gold. It’s also likely you’ve been vigilant in expanding your contacts data base, but it’s important not to forget to use it. A phone call every now and again will remind potential clients of your commitment to them. Finally, there are also now a host of social media opportunities available to demonstrate your commitment and consistency in the area relatively easily.

Be the person who knows everything about everything.

If you can demonstrate to your current and potential clients that you are up to date on the range of factors which can impact on property sales, you can easily demonstrate your ability to deliver more value than your competitors. In fact, possessing in-depth knowledge on the local area, the economy, changes to legislation, state and national developments and even international relations could move a client from being potential, into definite.

Make a commitment to keep on educating yourself in 2015. By having an expansive general knowledge, you will be able to engage with people on a wide range of topics, and not seem like you’re just waiting to sign them up to a contract.

Go the extra mile.

It’s an age-old adage, but it’s so important. The agent who takes the time and effort to send out handwritten thankyou notes or a “welcome to the neighbourhood” hamper is probably going to stand out above the crowd. By showing that you are willing to go the extra mile in the small things, you demonstrate that you are also likely able to go the extra mile in the bigger things, where it counts. And the best part is that even though it probably won’t cost you much, it could pay huge dividends.


0 comments | Posted by Reality Bytes - Real Estate Training Blog on 28/01/2015 at 12:00 AM | Categories:

Spruce up your property after the holidays

After the holidays it can be difficult to be motivated to do anything around the house. It can

sometimes be hard enough just being back at work! However, spending some time sprucing up your 

home after the holidays can provide a sense of accomplishment, and allow you to begin the year 

with a fresh outlook.

 

Below are three tips to help you change the feel of you place – with minimal effort.

 

Help your grass with some Nitrogen: If your grass got trampled by parties over the holiday season, 

chances are it’s looking like it could be in need of a little bit of love. Now is a great time to help it 

recover, and there are several options for bringing it back into full health. Grass responds really well 

to Nitrogen based fertilisers. This is because nitrogen is an important part of the photosynthesis 

process. It will also have an impact within a couple of days – particularly with the warm weather and 

if you ensure it’s hydrated – meaning your grass should really take off. This will help to make it look a 

deeper green, and also more lush.

 

Bring some outside inside: Maybe you’ve had to make room for extra people at your house over the 

Christmas period, and so moved your pots outside. Or, maybe you’ve never had many pots inside in 

the first place. However, potted plants can be a great way to change up the feel of your home. There 

are so many options these days, and interesting foliage makes for great impact. Have a look at some 

plants like a Fiddle leaf fig (Ficus lyrata), Maidenhair Fern (Adiantum spp.), or a Zanzibar gem 

(Zamioculcas zamiifolia). These plants can help bring life to any interior.

 

Change up your layout: The period following the holidays can be a great time to change the 

furniture layout in your home. It can be as simple as changing the orientation of the furniture in your 

lounge room, or you could even look at reconsidering the layout of every room! You could even 

consider rethinking the positioning of artwork on the walls, or possibly even bringing in some new 

pieces. Draw up a rough plan of your rooms, and think about how a new layout could work. It might 

appear so different that you could feel like you have new furniture. And don’t forget the old adage – 

a change is as good as a holiday!


0 comments | Posted by Reality Bytes - Real Estate Training Blog on 21/01/2015 at 10:28 AM | Categories:

Tips for Buyers in 2015

With the arrival of a new year, many Australians may have resolved to finally enter the property market in 2015, or increase an existing property portfolio. 

This could be driven by the recent few years of strong performance recorded by property as an asset class. December CoreLogic RP Data statistics demonstrated that home values across the combined capital cities achieved a year-on-year increase of 8.5 per cent by the conclusion of 2014. This was just down from the 9.8 per cent achieved during 2013. 

Certain areas recorded even higher growth levels, such as Sydney with its 13.2 per cent year-on-year increase achieved by the end of 2014. This growth exceeded the predictions of many pundits, who may also have been surprised to hear of the unexpectedly high growth levels in several rural and regional areas. This demonstrates that the market can sometimes move in unexpected ways. 

Heading into 2015, none of us can really predict what the year ahead will bring. We can't say for sure whether interest rates will rise, fall or stay the same. Nor can we predict with any true accuracy the 'hotspots' which will provide the greatest capital gains, or the highest rental yields. Regulatory requirements may sharpen or become more lax, and economic activity abroad may see numbers of foreign investors increase - or drop - as a response. 

I believe it will be an interesting year to watch unfold, and below are my tips for buyers heading in 2015. 

 

1. PUT ON THE BREAKS 

We entered 2014 off the back of the 'sellers' market' of 2013, in which vendors could easily find a buyer willing and ready to meet their, at times, fairly high prices. This is still occurring to some degree in certain market 'hotspots' where a shortage of listings continues to drive upward pressure on pricing. 

However, I believe there are still many areas now where this frantic demand is cooling off, and the power in the negotiation is beginning to tip in the direction of buyers. For this reason, I would suggest buyers take their time when attending open for inspections, or when considering their different options. Be committed to looking at a number of different properties, instead of rushing to purchase at the first available opportunity. Take your time. Then come back with the price you believe the property is worth - not the price being pushed on you by the seller - and stick to your guns, or walk away. 

 

2. BUT DON'T BE TRAPPED BY ANALYSIS PARALYSIS 

I would never advise anyone to rush into a purchase without having done some thorough research. However, I've also witnessed prospective buyers become trapped by what is often referred to as 'analysis paralysis'. This occurs when someone overthinks, or over-analyses, a situation to such a degree that an action or outcome is prevented from ever actually occurring. 

These days we have some many great sources of property market statistics that it can even become addictive to pore over every possible metric, speculating as to the best, or worst, time to make a move. However, as enormously informative as these sources are, they still only demonstrate historical trends which have already occurred - not those anticipated to transpire. 

If you are truly considering entering the market, I would certainly recommend self-education on the historical trends of different locations and property types. But at some point it may be time to put down the research and begin to consider taking action. 

 

3. RENT WITH YOUR HEART, BUY WITH YOUR HEAD 

Speaking of trends, an interesting trend I witnessed in 2014 was an elevated level of interest in areas outside of the capital cities, such as Nowra in New South Wales and Queensland's Gold Coast. This leads me to believe that prospective first home buyers who feel property prices are currently too high to enter the market may not be considering all of their options. It's important to live in an area which is convenient for whichever lifestyle suits you best - whether this means access to a particular university, an abundance of local parks in a quiet neighbourhood, or a raging night life just down the road. However, it may not always be possible to purchase in these areas. 

This is why I always recommend buying in an area you can afford, and renting where you wish to live. It's my opinion that there's no point waiting until you can finally afford to buy your dream house, if doing so means losing the potential capital gains you could have been making through another property. Using this technique could help you to enter the property market in a way which works for your particular budget, while allowing you to live in a location which works for your chosen lifestyle. 

 

4. LEAVE YOUR EMOTIONS AT THE DOOR 

Buying a home can often be an enormously emotional undertaking. Considering where to lay down your roots, raise a family, or simply begin your journey as a property investor can all be highly personal concerns. This is then heightened by the high, and long-term, nature of the financial costs involved. 
However, buyers who enter into a home-buying negotiation with an objective mindset may avoid a number of emotional traps, such as bidding too high at auction for that 'perfect' 3-bedder with the cute picket fence, or signing up for a snazzy property which is way out of their price range. By committing to remain strictly impartial and sticking to a set of pre-defined parameters, it's my belief that buyers will secure the most favourable outcome. 
So look around, take your time, but don't be afraid to make your move when the time is right. By following the above tips I believe buyers may be positioning themselves in a way which sets them up for the greatest chances of property-buying success in 2015. 

 


0 comments | Posted by Reality Bytes - Real Estate Training Blog on 14/01/2015 at 12:51 PM | Categories: