Thursday, December 19, 2013

Looking back on 2013…

What a big year it has been for real estate. We have experienced the market transitioning to the recovery phase with record low interest rates across the year. Buyers have been biting the bullet and investors have been hugely active, chasing the low vacancy rates across core areas in Adelaide.

It's been an exciting year for real estate but also for Adelaide. The new look Rundle Mall and city streets are coming to life. Peel Street and Leigh Street are adding a new buzz to the city and things are really moving. The South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI) is a world class facility and icon for our State.  And what better way to finish off a big year of change than watching Australia lead the way against England at the new and improved Adelaide Oval. And making the Lonely Planet Top 10 Cities to visit for 2014 list at number 9 is a true sign that our wonderful city is stamping its mark on not just the Australian, but the world map.

As agents, we love being submerged in this energy. Seeing new hubs of activity develop in our city is fantastic and we love working with our clients to achieve results. I'm excited for what's to come in 2014. I think it will be a big year for Adelaide but in particular Toop&Toop. Our team, both Sales and Property Management, are gearing up for another year of outstanding results. Genevieve and I are driving ongoing improvements across the entire business and pursuing growth. We will continue to re-set what our clients can expect from their agent.

This wouldn't be possible without all the hard work put in by our entire team. A huge thank you and congratulations to Team Toop - you have been fantastic. You have achieved so much this year and have been instrumental in ensuring we strive for exceptional customer service.

There is lots happening in our State and we are not taking our foot off the gas. We are one of the few agencies working through January and the Festive Season. If you are looking for property over the holiday period, make sure you look at ToopVault at www.vault.toop.com.au or if you're looking for an investment property check out www.tradingroom.toop.com.au. Our ToopVault properties will be launched in January so make sure you have a look before they hit the market to make sure you don't miss out!

To our clients, from the whole Team Toop family, thank you for all your support. We hope you have a fantastic Christmas break and enjoy spending time with family and friends. This is often the only time in the year to unwind and spend quality time with loved ones, so we hope you have a safe and relaxing time. We look forward to working with you in 2014.

Regards,
Suzannah Toop


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Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Headlines... Job losses. What now?

Well, we are hiring! Team Toop is ready to step up and do our bit!

Doom and gloom can easily take hold if we let it. Holden has dominated the headlines all week. On Wednesday morning, Dan Akerson, President of General Motors in the USA was being quoted as having "1,760 jobs in his hands". The future of Holden lied solely with Mr Akerson's decision.

By Wednesday afternoon, the city was abuzz with the news that 'It's official—Holden are out in 2017'.

So, what now?

For me, I like certainty and with the announcement we now know what we are dealing with—thank goodness. We have time to adjust and get our collective act together, and to take up the challenge.

Real estate in the Northern suburbs will have uncertainty, but prices are not high and the market has already factored uncertainty in, so it is not a huge surprise.

It will be interesting to see now what the 'Pollies' have to say, and this sure will test their leadership leading into the State election. It is perfect timing for an election as we will see what they are made of—have they got what it takes to lead this State? It will become a lot clearer.

Rather than South Australia standing back and being victims, I say it's time for us to stand up and take control. Let's start with South Australia's business owners making a stand and doing whatever we can to innovate, be bold and get some jobs going.

GOVERNMENT. They have shown they are struggling to fix the big issues, giving lots of promises over the past decade, but all we seem to get are more hurdles. Maybe they can help in another way. 

I think it's time the Government simply got out of the way of small business and cut up red tape. Politicians, you have created so many new laws in real estate and the building industries that we are drowning in it. It hasn't really made a scrap of difference from 30 years ago when I first started in real estate. You will always have good and bad operators, no matter how many laws are passed!

So many new impediments to free flowing business—it is all quite insane. Government, get out of the way and let small business owners get on with what we are meant to be doing—making money and employing more people.

Get rid of Payroll Tax (such a ridiculous tax when we are creating jobs). Get rid of administration burdens like BAS, compulsory surveys such as those from the ABS and all the new bureaucratic legislation. Let small businesses get on with things and start employing again.

As I mentioned three weeks ago, Toop&Toop will be doing our small part. We are looking for up to 10 new team members, all who are passionate, smart and enthusiastic people. We are ready to step up the service we can deliver to our clients, and we need more awesome people in order to do it.

New additional jobs include Property Management, Sales, Admin and IT Software programming. Send your resum├ęs in now.

Monday night: We are holding a Toop&Toop careers night on Monday 16 December 2013, so if you are a gun and want to have a career (as opposed to just a job), email Sarah Williams at sarah.williams@toop.com.au, or call 08 8366 0856.

South Australia is amazing, no better place in the world to live, and if it is to be, it is up to us.

Regards,
Anthony Toop


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Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Two P's... Puppies and Property!

Last week I picked up my new puppy, Willow. I was very excited, as I had wanted a dog ever since returning from London. As soon as I picked her up, I was introduced to a world that one week earlier I had no idea existed. Terms such as 'crate training' and 'positive response therapy' were all things I had never heard of before. In just one week, I have learnt more about puppies than I have in a lifetime.

The lead up to Christmas is a very busy time in real estate and is not really the ideal time for distractions. Knowing this, I wanted to find out how long a puppy could be left by itself, so I went straight to the Internet to learn more about it. The only problem was that when I Googled my question, I got the widest range of answers—from "you can't leave your puppy at all", to a website saying that leaving them for eight hours a day is fine. I was left more confused than before so I went searching for answers!

These days there is so much information available online that it is overwhelming. The information I found—rather than answering my questions—threw up even more questions. Which one of these of answers do I listen to?

My lesson. The problem these days isn't finding the opinions and answers to your question; it's finding the right answer—a trusted answer for you and your circumstances.

Real estate is a classic for the uninitiated. The quality of your real estate decisions can profoundly impact on your future wealth—it has changed so much over recent years. Agents used to be the gatekeepers to real estate information—nowadays the Internet and the likes of Google have opened the information floodgates. 

I believe some traditional agents drew power from holding the keys to this information and are now finding it hard because our role as real estate agents has fundamentally changed. As agents we need to be so much more than custodians of information. Just like information on puppies, there's so much information out there on property that everyone can access. Our role is to help you cipher through, help interpret and add our experience and local knowledge to this, in order to address any of your concerns.

To us, real estate is second nature and I must always remember this puppy story, for real estate can be such a foreign environment to our clients.  It's just what we do. We are working in the industry every day; we are local and know the Adelaide market inside out. 

So remember, Suzannah, myself and Team Toop are always here to help. To interpret all of the information you may find on the Internet, all your friends advice and to explain how it impacts on you. We are local, we are a family, we are Team Toop.

So, how long can I leave Willow on her own while she's a puppy? To find my answer I consulted a professional, someone I could trust and who knew my situation—my local vet. Willow is in good hands.

Regards,
Genevieve Toop


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