Thursday, August 31, 2017

Finals fever is here… for footy and for real estate!

Last week as the AFL teams secured their 
place in the finals, the Real Estate Institute 
of South Australia (REISA) also announced 
their finalists for the industry's Annual Awards 
for Excellence.

Looking through the list in last week's paper, you can see that there is an interesting mix of competition. A blend of new players, franchises, small and large agencies, but one thing is clear - real estate, like football, has come a long way in the last 32 years.

In the 70s and 80s, according to Dad's 'old days' stories, real estate could be likened to his childhood days in Orroroo and country football. Players would have a beer at quarter time, and then get back out on the field to play the rest of the game! Real estate was relaxed, simple and casual. Sales agents carried star droppers, a hammer and small property signs - their real estate technology!

There was minimal consumer protection, no photographs, no marketing brochures, and rarely even open inspections! Internet and digital strategies didn't exist and the fax machine had just arrived. If you wanted to see a property, you were taken there in the agent's car. Yes, you met at the office or were picked up from your home and chauffeur driven!

By the end of the 90s and early 2000s, there was a big shift. Auctions, floor plans and the internet started to get underway. South Australian real estate was becoming serious and standards were on the move. In footy terms, this was the equivalent of the 'SANFL' era.

We saw new legislation, increased competition and the outlaw of dummy bidding. Agents were sharpening up and 'cowboys' of the industry were under pressure.

Then there was the arrival of custom signboards, professional photography, glossy brochures, property magazines, the influence of the internet, open inspections were the norm and finally tablets and smart phones came in and transformed the space yet again.

In 2017, looking through the finalists list, you can see this space is once again changing. We are now playing 'AFL' competition in real estate... but not all agencies are going to make the league.

This era is one where the consumer has taken a quantum shift. Technology has changed more than we could have ever imagined and new capabilities have been reached that were never dreamt possible, even just a year ago.

These 'AFL' real estate agencies are taking on convention and challenging 'SANFL' standards; taking services and standards to a level never before contemplated.

Like in the AFL competition, those with professional managers who are highly trained with specialised skills are replacing generalist player based skills in each activity.

Companies wanting to remain competitive and enter the new 'AFL' world will need to pre-empt emerging customer needs, innovate fast and embrace new technology.

We are extremely proud that our team made the 'finals' in an unprecedented 11 categories this year; we've earned our place in the new AFL real estate competition.

With our high-energy team, we will continue to challenge the industry. You can see that competition drives innovation - it helps lift the industry to new levels, and the customer becomes the ultimate winner.

At Toop&Toop, we take real estate very seriously so if you are ready to sell or rent your property, talk to our team today. 
Enjoy finals fever!


Thursday, August 24, 2017

Adelaide bats above average, as rental demand surges!


Demand for property in Adelaide has hit a new peak. The latest housing reports show the demand for houses has risen 8.8% over the past 12 months and 6.2% since June 2017.

For investors there is even more good news. With rental demand surging 34.5% year-on-year, Adelaide is well above the national average of 19.2%. Our city is cementing itself as a steady and consistent performer... and there are no signs of this slowing down. In just the past month alone, rental demand has grown by 11.1% (compared to the national average of 9%).

So what's put Adelaide out in front?
Adelaide rents have remained steady over the past few years and the growth on the eastern seaboard has pulled right back. Adelaide continues to be the most affordable mainland capital city in Australia, and is viewed as 'good value for money'. The lifestyle and ease of living is very attractive and is not readily available in other capital cities at the same price point. 

Our team are seeing that properties in sought after locations are leasing after one week, or above the advertised rental price. This week Toop&Toop's vacancy rate was at 0.45% compared to the industry average of 1.8%.

Rents in metropolitan Adelaide have remained buoyant throughout winter as there has been a shortage of properties available. This, coupled with a high number of tenants looking for property, has allowed Adelaide to outperform.

Where are the Adelaide hot spots?
The most searched suburbs on realestate.com are Unley, Dulwich, Millswood, Unley Park and Clarence Gardens, closely followed by Crafers, Colonel Light Gardens, Glenunga, Hawthorndene and Hyde Park.

At Toop&Toop, we are seeing that suburbs close to hubs of activity, such as the CBD, beaches, shopping centres or entertainment precincts are performing the best. These areas are seen as 'low risk' options for investors as tenants are drawn to 'buzzing' areas.

Adelaide is attracting interest from investors across the nation! It really is an exciting time to be investing in our state.​



Thursday, August 17, 2017

There's a new feeling in the air, the cold chill is beginning to ease and the days seem to be getting longer. Spring is just around the corner... now only two weeks away! 

In our industry, even though statistics show that winter is a great time to sell, we know that homes look beautiful in spring and many vendors feel more comfortable waiting until the winter months have passed to put their home on the market. 

Why does winter work so well for sellers compared to spring? Stock levels are tight and buyer demand is high. Then, while awaiting settlement, sellers can cherry pick the best buys from the seasonal flood of newly listed properties that traditionally launch in the first few weeks of spring.

Still have your heart set on spring? We have some tips to help make sure you don't get caught in the rush! 

1. 

Put your home on the market early! This ensures that you get a head start on competing properties and capture the attention of buyers that have been waiting 
for stock levels to increase. 

2. 

Ensure you have a selling strategy you are comfortable with. Launching in peak times does have great advantages, however it is likely that you will be competing with more properties. Ensure you take the time to choose the right agency and that your salesperson has a strategic approach to the campaign - one that you feel will get you the very best result. 

3. 

Beware of 'campaigns' or 'promotions'. Agency competitions have started. They are offering people all sorts of 'prizes' such as holidays or vouchers, to ramp up the quantity of business for their agents leading into spring. It is important to tread carefully with promotions like these, as choosing the right agent with the resources to handle the sale campaign is integral to its success.

4. 

Curiosity is imperative! Ask questions of your salesperson, ask to see more information, or even ask for a tour of the agent's office. Find
out what goes on behind the scenes to support the promises they are making. 

Spring is almost here and we're excited! At Toop&Toop we pride ourselves on delivering our promise of exceptional customer service
and results. With our collaborative buyer Intel, we can provide you with an accurate number of how many people we have looking for a property 
like yours, in real time.

If you would like to find out more on how Team Toop can leverage buyer demand and make sure your home stands out this spring with our new ToopCreate property marketing tools, speak to one of our team today!


Thursday, August 10, 2017

Investors, get ready. Spring is just around the corner!

Spring is less than four weeks away and for many of us, we are counting down the days! Not just because the weather starts to warm up but for the property enthusiasts it is typically the busiest period in the real estate industry.

It is when homes start to look their best and we begin to see an increase in activity in the market. Historically spring means there are more properties available to buy and rent, and purchasers and tenants finally start to experience some relief, following the lower stock levels seen over the winter months.

So investors, with less than four weeks to go, now is the time prepare and get yourself ready 
to buy. And here's why...

Greater choice.

As we head into spring there is generally more choice in the market. Not only in terms of the number of properties available in your price range and chosen area, but also the property type that you might be interested in (for example houses or units). This gives you a greater ability to compare the rental returns of the different types of properties on the market and make an informed decision when buying.

Capitalise on the busy period.

Purchasing a property in spring provides the right amount of time to prepare your new investment to hit the rental market. With typical settlement periods of 30, 60 or 90 days on your property purchase, you are in the prime position to make the most of the December/January peak rental period. This includes planning a marketing strategy to ensure you can make the most of the 'new year rush'. This is the time of year where the number of tenants looking to secure a new home peaks. You can also capitalise on the relocation activity that occurs.

Interest rates.

With the Reserve Bank of Australia keeping the official cash rate on hold again this month, at 1.5% it remains at historical lows. With investor rates starting from 4.5%, funding remains affordable for landlords.

So if you're thinking about entering the property investment market, now is the ideal time to get yourself ready. Start looking at your budget, how much you can borrow as well as suburbs that have been flagged for growth potential.

Our property management team are here to share our market knowledge and ensure you 
are ready to take advantage of the current climate when spring hits!



Thursday, August 03, 2017

Tech-savvy buyers are out and about!

Australians are some of the most tech savvy people in the world and as a nation we love buying property and living 'The Great Australian Dream'. With half of the world's population online, digital connectivity is helping to improve people's lives, and in real estate we are seeing that buyers are savvier than ever. New digital tools are making the process of buying and selling property faster, simpler, more engaging and accessible than ever before.

Buyer's expectations are also much greater than they used to be... they want information, quickly and easily, and it needs to be up to date and available, whenever and wherever. A study conducted last year by realestate.com.au found that 78 per cent of consumers were accessing property listings and information online - rather than through traditional methods alone
- using smart phones, laptops and tablets.

New technologies are giving buyers the power to shape their property-seeking journey rather than passively absorb what they are being given. They are using their mobile devices to interact with properties more than ever before and prefer digital platforms like virtual inspections and live-streamed auctions.  

Since launching ToopCreate, a new suite of property marketing tools for our Toop&Toop clients, we have seen our digital feature ToopDesign generate a buzz in the
marketplace. ToopDesign shows off the full potential of a home, and allows buyers to imagine renovating and redecorating. Buyers are able to digitally customise the interior of a home by selecting exciting new colours and textures for walls, flooring, countertops and cabinets. Buyers are also able to customise the exterior of your home including paint colour, window frame colour and other options. This design tool is transforming buyers' experience and sellers' results.

What buyers love.

The ability to digitally alter the kitchen and the exterior facade of a potential property to purchase, giving them the opportunity to visualise how the home would best work for them and their style. Buyers also love that they can do this from their iPad, giving them flexibility to design their dream home and show their family and friends wherever they are in the world. 

What sellers love.

Seeing the way buyers can interact with their home and give them an insight into what the property would look like if they added their own touches. They also love how it makes their property standout from the other listings on the market!

Since launching ToopDesign just one month ago, our clients' properties have had 10,000 more unique page views than our usual monthly average (an extra 322 views a day!) and time spent on our clients' webpages has dramatically increased!

If you would like to know more about ToopCreate, including products such asToopDesign, and how they can help you achieve the best result for your home, our team would love to hear from you.