How to Start a Career in Property

man jumping on cliff

A career in property can not only be incredibly fulfilling but can provide you with the opportunity to generate a great deal of wealth. Whether you’ve been stuck in the daily grind for a number of years, or are fresh out of school, there’s no limitations on what you can achieve as a buyer’s agent (also commonly referred to as a buyer’s advocate) in the real estate market. 

There’s no such thing as too old, too young, not qualified enough… as long as you have the right tools and a can-do attitude, you’re likely to go far. 

If you’re thinking about embarking on an exciting new career in property, then check out these handy tips to help set you in the right direction. 

Ask yourself if property buying is right for you? 

A passion for real estate is going to be so valuable in giving you the motivation to succeed in your transition into a career in property. Do you regularly read real estate news? Do you know what the prices of properties look like in your local area? If not, don’t despair. It’s never too late to get started. The industry is so dynamic and always changing, so by keeping your finger on the pulse you’ll be feeding your passion to succeed. 

You might be wondering about where you should focus your efforts and whether you want to be buying or selling property. Here are the key differences between a buyer’s agent and a real estate agent

Still unsure which path is right for you? There are so many good reasons for why you should become a buyer’s agent. Still not convinced? Get in touch with the friendly team at the Buyer’s Agent Institute to find out why property buying could be right for you. 

Complete a course in property buying

 

Education is so important in setting the foundation for the skills you need to succeed. Particularly, when it comes to a career in property. By investing in further education, you’ll be investing in your future and giving yourself the best chance of success. 

Studying to become a buyer’s agent with the Buyer’s Agent Institute is designed to give you everything you need to launch yourself into the property market as a well equipped buyer’s agent. You’ll learn everything from how to negotiate huge property deals, expertly service clients, set up your business and more. In addition, you’ll receive ongoing support from a community of like minded individuals who are also focusing their efforts on making their mark on the industry. 

Already working full time? No problem, you can complete your studies at the Buyer’s Agent Institute on a part time basis. You get to choose the pace at which you study, giving you the freedom to set the speed at which you transition into a career in property. 

Gain real life experience 

There’s nothing like practical real-life experience to help build your network and set your expectations for what a career in property will be like. On top of study, make a list of local buyers agents and reach out to find if there are opportunities for work experience. Even if it’s just grabbing a coffee with your local agent, there’s so much you can learn, just from asking questions. The Buyer’s Agent Institute has a network of agents from all types of backgrounds, so reach out to our team if you’d like help connecting with an agent to help answer any questions. 

You can also start regularly viewing properties and auctions so you can get more familiar with the market and the steps involved when buying property. You’ll be surprised how much extra you can learn. 

Just do it

It’s so common to keep putting off important decisions just because they seem too hard. What we often forget is how much is lost by not taking that first step into what can be a life changing direction. 

Speak to the team at the Buyer’s Agent Institute today to find out how you can get started in an exciting career in property.

Giving People Honest Advice

Buyer's Agent Ben Plohl

After 15 years as a property investor, Ben Plohl has built up an extensive understanding of what a great investment looks like.

Ben started buying property at 18 years old and built up his portfolio across the course of his working life. After working as both a chartered account and CFO, Ben made the transition into a full-time property, in a bid to follow his passion and help others.

“As soon as I turned 18 I went out and bought my first property and from there I really developed a passion for property.”

“Over a long period of time I was able to build up a pretty large property portfolio and towards the end of the corporate career I didn’t need to have that corporate lifestyle anymore, I had a young family, I decided to make the transition into a buyer’s agent.”

Having worked with buyer’s agents throughout his own investment journey, Ben understood the benefits and felt he would be a good fit both personally and also given his background in business.

Ben’s business, BFP Property Buyers, focuses on the Sydney area for owner-occupiers given his in-depth knowledge of the area but also helps investors identify properties in all locations.

“We do both owner-occupier and investments. For owner-occupier perspective, we target Sydney, predominantly around the Hills district, Lower North and Upper North Shore, the Eastern Suburbs and the Inner West of Sydney.”

“From an investment perspective, we don’t have a bias to any particular location. Our location analysis and selection are based on a scientific data approach where we look at the economics behind certain markets and understand what’s going on at a sort of micro-level to then give our clients the advice around where to invest in in order to meet their specific goals. At the moment we invest in just over four different states across the country.”

BFP Property Buyers started at the beginning of 2019 and has grown quickly. Initially, Ben reached out to the BAI to help him get the business started on the right foot.

“Having run businesses in the past and big teams, I think going into your own small solo-operator business is always daunting in a new industry.”

“With Ben’s help and his course, it was a way to give me comfort in having a crack at it and ever since I started it’s been great. He’s a good guy.”

Going forward Ben is looking to continue to grow his business while focusing on helping people.

“Setting up a business is always great – the financial benefits are always great. But for me personally, it’s just helping people – giving them honest advice about helping them make better decisions when acquiring their largest asset that they most likely will buy in their lifetime. So that’s really important.”

“It’s important for me to be giving them independent representation in making smart decisions and not overpaying for property.”

For those looking at a career as a buyers agent, Ben suggest people give it a crack.

“I think it’s important that you have a good, thorough understanding of property. I think that’s really important. Having good interpersonal skills, being able to understand or extract information from your client to really give them valuable advice around what they might need and what they might not need.

“But ultimately it’s just if you’ve got the confidence then have a crack. I think the industry’s still in its infancy and there are opportunities for everyone.”

Mind, Body, Sold

Buyer's Agent Elaine Davies from New Road Property on Mind, Bold, Sold!

Ben Handler:

Welcome to the Buyer’s Agent Institute how. The purpose of the show is to bring awareness to buyer’s agents. Bring awareness around the career opportunities the sector is providing people. To bring awareness of the value that buyer’s agents are providing people who need help buying property.

Ben Handler:

Our goal of the show is to strip back and dive into the remarkable stories and journeys of buyer’s agents who are paving the way forward in one of the fastest-growing career sectors in real estate right now.

Ben Handler:

Our guest today is Elaine Davies. She’s from the UK. She’s from Wales. She’s got an awesome career background. It’s very diverse. She was a TV and radio presenter. She was a magazine columnist. She is an author. She recently published a book called Mind, Body, Sold. She’s published, I believe, four books. She’s also worked as a selling agent, and that was in Asia.

Ben Handler:

When she did go through a divorce, when she was back in Australia, she then got back into becoming a selling agent again. But then realized that the buyer was heavily misrepresented. There was a massive gap. The buyer needed more attention. So she became a buyer’s agent. She worked for a few firms. We actually worked together at my former company Cohen Handler. She’s awesome.

Ben Handler:

And now she’s recently started her own business, called New Road Property. And Elaine has a very strong purpose. I think it’s very deep. It’s really focused on empowering women. Helping women become more financially secure. Helping women understand how to get the money to work for them. And using the property as an investment vehicle to really achieve it.

Ben Handler:

I’m super excited to introduce Elaine. Welcome.

Elaine Davies:

Ben, thank you. What a beautiful introduction. You’re so gorgeous.

Ben Handler:

Thank you. There’s a lot there. We knew you’ve got a good background. It’s a deep background. So, did I nail it?

Elaine Davies:

You nailed it. There are no re-takes here.

Ben Handler:

Awesome. You’ve got the book there, Mind, Body, Sold.

Elaine Davies:

Yeah, I’ve got the book. So, you’re right. I wrote this because I really… You were a buyer’s agent, I’m a buyer’s agent, but not everybody wants to use a buyer’s agent. And maybe people live in small communities. So I gave away every single tip. Everything from the searching to the negotiating. It’s all in here. So for 30 bucks, people can have our experience.

Elaine Davies:

But I also delved into the mindset. Because a lot of times people don’t buy, not because they don’t know how to look, and not because they haven’t got the money, but there’s something in them. They’re in property mindset, or people around them are going, “Don’t do that. Come out for a cocktail. Don’t save that money.” They haven’t got goals. They haven’t got a vision. So I wrote that as well.

Elaine Davies:

And I’ve also written a little part about why women drew the wealth short straw and the circumstances around that. But, more importantly, what we can do about it.

Ben Handler:

It’s powerful, and I love the heading. I know I spoke to you last year about it. I read it, and it is very good. And you give away a lot. I always admire it when people actually give it all out. They’re not just giving a bit, as like a tickler.

Elaine Davies:

It’s not a lead magnet.

Ben Handler:

That ain’t a lead magnet. No, but I think you’ve got a lot of experience. As I said, you’ve worked as a selling agent overseas. You’ve worked as a selling agent, here in Sydney, for a long time. You’ve worked as a buyer’s agent. You’re running your own company now. You’ve also got life experience. You’ve been a writer. You are a writer. You’ve got a lot to bring to the table, right?

Ben Handler:

And I think, more importantly, what I feel connected with what you’re doing is… even though I’m not a female… is how you are connected with serving women.

Elaine Davies:

Yeah, that’s a good word.

Ben Handler:

Why are you so passionate about it?

Elaine Davies:

Oh, well, two reasons. Yeah, I’m glad you asked me that. There’s a really big picture, in that statistics are showing that the growing stats around homelessness is women, and it’s growing evermore.

Elaine Davies:

So, women coming out of divorces, or all kinds of reasons. But women are actually ending up on the streets. So that’s the big picture. I just want to be a tiny little cog, in helping that level down, and come back a bit. And that, I think, is a lot to do with mindset, and people [inaudible 00:03:57].

Elaine Davies:

Now, on a personal level, as you say I was on the TV, I was on many radio stations, including [inaudible 00:04:05], Qantas. I think I was writing about seven magazines. I was publishing authors. I was the Carrie Bickmore of Sydney. And I was running large. I was flying all over the world. I was working, even back then, on my computer.

Elaine Davies:

Then I got married, and within four years, I was a single mother of a two-year-old. Now if I hadn’t frittered that money away in my 20s and 30s, I would’ve been fine. But I was of the mindset then, and I don’t come from a family where we create money. I come from a family where you work hard. We’re grafters. That working-class thing. It’s week to week. And everything’s got to be hard.

Elaine Davies:

My own story, my life would be… I’ve caught up now, but when my marriage broke up, I was like, “Okay, what do we do now?” And it was quite tough for quite a number of years.

Elaine Davies:

Yeah, I’ve seen that story happen so many times, and it’s so easy just to save a little bit, and get an investment.

Ben Handler:

Yeah. It sounds easy, but a lot of people don’t do it.

Elaine Davies:

We just need to spend less and save more. My grandmother had four dresses in her… I think she had three dresses in her wardrobe. A day dress, a church dress and something else. But think how big the wardrobes were. They were just little wooden wardrobes.

Ben Handler:

I’m surprised about the women and the homelessness. I actually didn’t know that. That’s insightful. How are you finding women, in terms of them being receptive, to wanting to go on this journey? To really have the money working for them, and to really start building wealth themselves.

Elaine Davies:

I think a lot of them feel really relieved because a lot of them have said… women are really good savers. We run households, sometimes with six people. We’re juggling bills. There are mortgages, there are school fees going out. There are school notes going out. So women are actually very good managers of money.

Elaine Davies:

It’s the next step we don’t tend to take. For some reason… And I was talking to a very successful woman about this the other day. She said, “Oh, we’re a great team. I do the searching, and my husband does the buying.” And I said, “Oh, interesting. So you do the pretty bit at the beginning, and you hand over the finances?” She went, “Oh, yeah, I suppose so.”

Ben Handler:

Handballs it.

Elaine Davies:

Handballs it. “You do the negotiations. I don’t want to do that.” We’re really good negotiators, women. We are constantly negotiating all day, every day. We need to own that in a really deep and powerful level. And just step up and go, “Yeah, man, I’m going to create this life.”

Ben Handler:

I personally think that women, in my time that I was working specifically in the buyer’s agent space in my company, I actually think women are more suited for the role. I think the selling side is very alpha male. Dog eat dog. And I do… And I would see that… I know you’ve been a selling agent. I haven’t. But I would see it’d be hard for a lady on that side. Maybe that’s wrong, but that’s how I see it, unfortunately. But on the buy side, I think the women have the power. And I hope to see more women.

Elaine Davies:

Me too. It’d be great to see more women in the industry as a whole. But it’s interesting you were saying… Because I became a buyer’s agent because I didn’t like the way the buyers were being treated. And, while I’m in real estate and so are you, I think we’re pretty honest people. Our core is that we’re working for the particular clients we’re working for.

Elaine Davies:

And I remember, it happened to me a few times, a buyer would call me and say, because I’d built up such a good relationship, “Look, Elaine, I can go another 20, but don’t tell the vendor. Start at five.” Well, they’d already told the vendor. I was the vendor’s representative. So I’d file my nails all day, go for a coffee and come back, and go, “Really exciting news. We’ve got it for the 20. I couldn’t go to five, don’t worry about that. Really exciting, got it for the 20.” And I was a pretty level negotiator.

Elaine Davies:

Yeah, absolutely, people really need a buyer’s advocate, because you’re making money when you buy, not when you sell. You buy rubbish, it’s not going to come up above the medium, which is what we all want.

Elaine Davies:

So I would rather see people put their money into a buyer’s agent, than into a real estate agent.

Ben Handler:

It’s fascinating what you just shared, I’m not surprised, regarding how transparent buyers are with real estate agents. I think they forget that the selling agent works for the vendor.

Elaine Davies:

Selling agents, just by their nature, are friendly, even if they’re not behind closed doors. But a lot are. I’ve got nothing against selling agents. But they’re working for the vendor. And they just don’t know.

Ben Handler:

How was the shift? I know you’ve been a buyer’s agent for a while. This is not new to you. And real estate’s not new to you either. You’ve got a lot of experience. However, how was that shift when you moved? Because you would have moved from a selling agent to a buyer’s agent at a time when it was still not very recognized.

Elaine Davies:

I was kind of one of the first. Not real… There was another batch before me, but it wasn’t like it is today. I loved it straight away. Yeah. And the guy I was working for had… he’s a quite flashy guy around town. He had his Ferrari. Actually, it’s not that fun to get in and out of. They’re better on paper than they are. No, but apart from that, I loved it straight away. Looking at all these amazing properties. But not getting fooled by the smell of fresh coffee, and lights on inside, and all that. A lot of it is common sense, but you only know once you know.

Ben Handler:

It’s true, and you get fooled. A lot of buyers get fooled. They walk into a place, and they don’t judge the light correctly. They’ve gone at the wrong time of the day. They can do stupid things.

Ben Handler:

Let’s talk about New Road Property. So you’re based in the inner-West?

Elaine Davies:

Yes I am based in the inner-West, and inner-city.

Ben Handler:

Okay, inner-city. So you’re focusing on…

Elaine Davies:

Inner-West and East, which is why I chose to have my office in the city. Because I really know both just as well as each other.

Ben Handler:

And they’re good areas to service.

Elaine Davies:

They’re great, and I love them both.

Ben Handler:

Are you specializing primarily in owner-occ, investor, both?

Elaine Davies:

I’d say I’m 50, 50. It’s funny, I was just thinking about two of the last properties I bought. I bought a beautiful terrace house here in Surrey Hills for 2.3 million, and I bought an apartment… I can’t remember the name of the suburb now… for 850. But the apartment was for owner-occupiers, and the 2.3 million was for investors. And they could easily have been the other way around. So a good property is a good property.

Ben Handler:

What happened during COVID? Obviously, for all of us, it was a shock, it was quick, a lot of change. What did you notice, whether it was property or anything?

Elaine Davies:

Well, my garden’s looking good.

Ben Handler:

Your garden…

Elaine Davies:

It’s never looked so good. Obviously, for a while, we couldn’t take people out. But, in a way, I was busier, because we were really finding the off markets even more. And I found that one conversation was leading to another. I actually found real estate agents were more open to saying, “Look, I think there is a house coming up actually.”

Elaine Davies:

Because, suddenly, people just became more of enclosed society. That’s the wrong word. What am I trying to say? Just started working better together, I felt.

Ben Handler:

They were collaborating more.

Elaine Davies:

That’s the word. That’s the word, Ben.

Ben Handler:

Yeah, I felt that as well. I felt that.

Elaine Davies:

I think it was such a shock to the system for everybody. Because I was a person who was in denial. I was one of the last to go, “Okay, this is really serious.” I really found people quite helpful.

Elaine Davies:

So I’d be… As I say, speaking to one real estate, “Actually, there is a house coming up, that’s not me.” I’m like, “Okay.”

Ben Handler:

You’re being nice today.

Elaine Davies:

What’s going on? I like COVID.

Ben Handler:

Yeah, it seems like people became a bit more vulnerable, a bit more open.

Elaine Davies:

Yeah. Let’s hope that stays.

Ben Handler:

That’s what I’m praying for.

Elaine Davies:

Yeah, me too. It would be wonderful if the world stayed… It does feel like we’re all now against this big baddie out there, and the baddie’s the virus. And we’re all looking after each other.

Ben Handler:

Question. It might be a silly question. Are you only servicing women as clients? Or will you take on…

Elaine Davies:

No, I’m not ever turning away. You know, we turn away clients.

Ben Handler:

Of course.

Elaine Davies:

The funny thing is, I don’t tend to work with many single guys. So I work with couples a lot. And we have a good laugh with that. Because I like to separate them. So I have this thing… Giving away a few of my tips now. But I get them to fill in separate briefs, the husband and the wife. No peaking. Because that, straight away, gives me a clue into what’s stopping them buying, what’s one of the things.

Ben Handler:

That’s smart.

Elaine Davies:

Because a lot of people, again, they don’t know what they don’t know. Hopefully, they love each other. So one is saying, “Oh, if you found a great house up there, I would live there.” And vice-versa. But really deep down, they’re not going to. They’re not going to move suburbs. Or they’re not going to live in an apartment. There’s something there that is fundamentally a stop, and they can go looking for a property for two years.

Ben Handler:

So, hypothetically… I’m sure you’ve been through this. You get two client profile forms back, quite different. Do you then, “Is this intervention now guys?”

Elaine Davies:

Yep, it’s intervention nos.

Ben Handler:

And, “Unless we come to a mutual agreement, we’re not moving forward.”

Elaine Davies:

Oh, we always come to a mutual agreement.

Ben Handler:

Who budges first? Male, female?

Elaine Davies:

Okay, let me think of it. [inaudible 00:13:08] So that was the male. No, I’d say half and half. A lot of it is just pointing it out. It’s not a gender thing. It’s more personality dominant, or whatever.

Elaine Davies:

One couple had been together for 30 years, and she was the one that called me. And she was like, “He’s getting on my nerves.” “Now”, I said, “We need to talk.” So they came in, hardly talking to each other, and their story was, “We are in the car on Saturday.” She would say to him, “Stop the car.” And he’d say, “Fine.” And she’d get out and slam the door.

Elaine Davies:

And what I realized was, she had put, “They wanted to buy in the next three months”, and he said, “No rush.” But she was the one that felt under pressure. So I said, “This is really interesting. What it’s telling me is, his communication with you is just showing you stuff. He’s just going, ‘What about this one? What about this one?’ He’s not actually… Not everyone he shows you, he wants to buy. He’s just trying to have a conversation.” And they walked out of my office holding hands.

Ben Handler:

Wow! I’m sure… Is that a rare outcome?

Elaine Davies:

Well, it’s usually… Holding hands, yeah. But, no, there’s usually a joy or a breakthrough. So sometimes they’re just exhausted, and they’re like, “Okay, get it.” And we get it.

Ben Handler:

What’s happening for New Road this year? Obviously, this year’s been a crazy year for everyone?

Elaine Davies:

Yeah.

Ben Handler:

Is it just business as usual? Obviously, you’ve got your course coming out. Is there anything different coming?

Elaine Davies:

I don’t think this is the year for me to change anything on New Road Property. It is business as usual. But I’m very excited about my course because as I say, it’s… and a lot of it is around understanding the real estate agent, and what they do, and what they say, and how to look at the property negotiations. So, I’m really excited.

Elaine Davies:

And I’m going to jump into a Facebook group and be part of it. To build a community around that. But it’s going to be business as usual because I love it. I love it. What’s to change, you know?

Ben Handler:

You don’t… In real estate, we don’t need to change a lot.

Elaine Davies:

We don’t. I’ve kind of arrived.

Ben Handler:

A lot of the old stuff really works. So social media, there’s some new stuff, nuances, that you can do, but a lot of the old stuff still works. And I think a lot of people are trying, I feel, with where we are now in 2020, to use technology to get somewhere quicker. A lot quicker. And take short-cuts. But what we do in real estate, I believe, it’s the old stuff that works.

Elaine Davies:

You can’t outsource relationships. You can’t say to somebody else, “Make this call. Read this thing.” You’ve got to be in front of people and talking, and luckily I quite like that.

Ben Handler:

You can’t outsource relationships. That’s what is going to be the title for this discussion. That is one thing that cannot get outsourced.

Elaine Davies:

No, anything can pretty much get outsourced, but that relationship… One of the things I really dislike, is when there’s almost I feel like a con when you are signed up by one buyer’s agent, and then you sign, and you go, “Actually, it’s not me you’re working with. It’s this other person.” And there’s been no transparency through that. That really irks me when I hear that. And it happens in a few industries, it’s not just ours.

Ben Handler:

Can I ask you, why do you really feel you can’t outsource relationships? Because a lot of things, we can outsource now. Everything’s basically outsourced.

Elaine Davies:

Because it’s so personal. It’s my relationship. I can possibly introduce somebody into there, back into my relationship, but then I’m… obviously I’m in… not in [inaudible 00:16:27], but then they would recreate their own relationship. And that’s different. That’s an introduction and a warm… But if you… You know people hire people to do what they call cold calling, or warm calling. “Call this person, and see if they want to work with me again?” It’s like, “No, that’s the one thing, that is the relationship.”

Ben Handler:

Relationships for real estate is… some people say it’s more important than property.

Elaine Davies:

Well, that’s ironic. I’m glad you brought that up, because I’m a people person. It’s my clients I’m passionate about. I know all about property. I know a good one. I know how to negotiate. But it’s the clients that I’m passionate about.

Ben Handler:

Are you very [inaudible 00:17:06] with who you take on?

Elaine Davies:

Yes, from experience.

Ben Handler:

Is that because would you say you’ve taken on the wrong client?

Elaine Davies:

Yeah, in the past. They’ve always bought, but I think if you buy… And this is any business, and actually any part of life. If you take on somebody that you just know is not going to be quite right, or are going to be draining on you for some reason, you’re actually sabotaging meeting the next great person that you would’ve met. The next great client that you would’ve met. And as I say, this is relationships as well. Because you’re exhausted, and your time’s all caught up here in this negative area. Whereas you should be out there, attracting the people you want.

Ben Handler:

No, you’re right. You’re spending your time more productively doing other things. Talking about, I guess, utilizing time, do you feel like your meetings, when you’re getting in front of people, they’re specifically in that time coming to you, experiencing similar problems? A lot of your clients that you decide that you want to work with, typically more time-poor, typically sick of real estate agents? Do you find there’s a commonality, or is it all very different?

Elaine Davies:

No, no, no, there’s a commonality. I think there are five basic things, isn’t there? And one of them is confusion in the household. Confusion between the partners. And I think that’s missed a lot. People don’t delve into that. But, absolutely, time-poor.

Elaine Davies:

As I say, I have a lot of time for real estate agents. I’m not here to say they do a bad job, because they do a good job for the vendor. But, yeah, buyers get very fed up of real estate agents. But they don’t understand that underquoting is a way in Sydney. It’s quote it low, watch it grow, quote it high, watch it die. We are all trained for underquoting in Sydney. If somebody quotes it at the right price, people are going to then add another 10%. In a way, they can’t win. So people have to understand under quoting is the norm. 10% is normal. It can be 25%.

Ben Handler:

Yeah, and you’d know that from being on the sell side?

Elaine Davies:

Oh, I know it from being a buyer’s agent, because that’s the one thing I never listen to with a real estate agent, is what they’re actually quoting. That’s white noise. You have to do your research, and find your comparables, and go, “It sits in these properties.”

Ben Handler:

And that’s why people engage us, as buyer’s agents. They will especially engage people like yourself who actually understand this. You can see through it all.

Ben Handler:

The story you shared earlier was interesting, about the buyer who would, when you were a selling agent, reveal everything to you. A lot of these buyers have got no idea what they’re doing.

Elaine Davies:

No, because they don’t come across… We’re in this every single day. And I say this to buyers, “The good real estate agents are having training every Tuesday morning for two or three hours. Dialogue. They’re role-playing.” Whereas a buyer will walk into the real estate agent’s lair, really, once every seven years.

Ben Handler:

Yeah, that’s a good point. Walking into their playground, and I think they’ve got something up on that real estate agent.

Elaine Davies:

Absolutely. And real estate agents know how to build the relationship that I was talking about. They know how to do that. And again, I talk about that in the book. In fact, the auction, I depicted that as Game of Thrones. So I don’t know if you’re a Game of Thrones… But, of course, the buyers are the Norths, the Starks. Lannisters are the real estate agents, and Little Finger is the auctioneer.

Ben Handler:

Oh, I like it.

Elaine Davies:

No alliance to anyone.

Ben Handler:

Buyers get bullied by the auctioneers.

Elaine Davies:

That’s right.

Ben Handler:

Bid against themselves. Real estate agents also put a lot of pressure on buyers. It’s an interesting part. We’ve got a lot to talk about. And we’ve got to, unfortunately, finish up.

Elaine Davies:

Can I just say one more thing about COVID?

Ben Handler:

Yes.

Elaine Davies:

I’ve really enjoyed the way that buyers have been bidding from home because that has given them power. They’re not being whispered at, or having a real estate… the very loud and successful auctioneer do that. They’ve actually been sitting in their own lounge room. And I think, “Long may that last.”

Ben Handler:

Auction Now.

Elaine Davies:

Auction Now.

Ben Handler:

Damien Cooley. Did you use that platform?

Elaine Davies:

No, I was thinking of AuctionWORKS, David Scholes.

Ben Handler:

Oh, I haven’t used that. They’re all effectively doing the same thing. I thought that was an interesting transition and move. I’m curious to know whether it’s going to play out.

Elaine Davies:

Yeah, I do worry that people drink though, because you can’t sign. It’s illegal. I always say to people, “Never settle your nerves with a drink.”

Ben Handler:

I didn’t think of that. There, you could see some silly bidding. I didn’t think of that. If people are drinking, or-

Elaine Davies:

They’re at home. That’s the only thing I worry about.

Ben Handler:

Nervous. Where’s the best place for people to find you?

Elaine Davies:

My website is newroadproperty.com. And then on Instagram, I’m elaine.davies.inc., I-N-C. I’m Elaine Davies on Facebook. And LinkdIn. I’m on LinkdIn. I spend a lot of time on LinkdIn. That’s where I hang.

Ben Handler:

It’s the professional hangout.

Elaine Davies:

Oh, I’m so professional.

Ben Handler:

I’ve noticed on social media, you have a new energy about you. It’s like it’s the new version. Elaine is out here to do something impactful now. I notice that, so I’m sure people who are watching and looking at social media… Because I’ve seen the old Elaine, which is great, but there’s a new energy.

Elaine Davies:

Thank you Ben.

Ben Handler:

So I’m really excited to see where you’re going to go.

Elaine Davies:

Thank you Ben.

Ben Handler:

I always love chatting. Good energy.

Elaine Davies:

Love chatting to you.

Ben Handler:

Personality. No surprise you’re in the people business, real estate. And I think this book is really gold. So I appreciate it. Thank you.

Elaine Davies:

Thank you.

Ben Handler:

For everyone listening, you can check out Elaine’s book, Mind, Body, Sold. I read that last year. She does give away a lot in that book. So if you’re a buyer, read it. If you’re a buyer’s agent, read it. If you’re a real estate agent, whatever you do in real estate, I would read it. There’s a lot of good information. Check out Elaine on her website.

Ben Handler:

I used to work with Elaine. Elaine’s super impressive. She brings a lot to the table. She’s an incredible human being, number one. And she’s doing this new business, I believe, with a lot of purposes. Different energy she’s bringing to the table. And she’s got a lot of experience, working on the sell side, and the buy-side.

Ben Handler:

When I used to recruit buyer’s agents, I always used to look for buyer’s agents who had worked on the sell side, because they understand the mentality of both sides. So if you’re a buyer, check out Elaine as well, because she brings a lot to the table for Sydney, for inner-city, inner-West and the Eastern suburbs. See you next week.

Please watch the full episode here:

How to Become a Buyer’s Agent

Are you looking to change your life and move in an exciting new direction? Tired of feeling like what you do is not making a difference and that you’re just another cog in the wheel? 

Whether you have a passion for property or are motivated to help others, becoming a buyer’s agent (also known as a buyer’s advocate) presents real opportunities for personal growth, fulfillment and success. 

Prior experience in the property industry is not required and your age, employment history, level of education are not barriers to success. Making the change into a career in property buying is entirely within your reach. 

Here’s how you can transition into a full time or part time career as a buyer’s agent. 

Start with learning 

The Buyer’s Agent Institute specialises in providing individuals like yourself with the skills and training needed to become a successful buyer’s agent. 

Through cutting edge systems, practical content and a powerful support network, students are given the tools needed to design their own path to success. 

The team at the Buyer’s Agent Institute will work closely with you to understand your goals and objectives and to help you shape the future that you want. 

All content is delivered online so whether you’re located in Australia or internationally, you can complete the course from anywhere. Even by the pool, if it takes your fancy. 

You may still be working or busy parenting children, so you can learn at your own pace to ensure that you have the time to focus on everything going on in your life that you need to. 

Ben Handler, the founder of the Buyer’s Agent Institute, transitioned himself into a career in property buying and successfully built a multi-million dollar buyer’s agent business employing over 30 staff. 

Everything he teaches is borne from his own experience and in-depth knowledge of the industry. 

If you want to build a high impact business that thrives, then this is the opportunity for you. 

Start with some free training and get in touch with the team to kickstart your career as a buyer’s agent. 

Get licensed 

Once you’ve completed training, you’ll need to register for and hold a license to legally operate as a buyer’s agent. 

In Australia, each state has its own laws and licensing requirements and you’ll need to hold a license for the state in which you plan to buy property in. 

There are generally two types of licenses available and the terminology for each will differ from state to state: 

Individual agent registration 

This registration is suitable for employees 

Full license registration 

This is suitable for agent principals and senior employees. 

Gain valuable experience 

While completing training is going to set the foundation for success for your career as a buyer’s agent, it’s your experience working out in the marketplace which is going to shape and solidify these learnings. 

As you start to build a successful buyer’s agent business, securing more and more clients, you’ll face real world challenges where you will need to apply your skills to achieve favourable outcomes. And with the right training, you will. 

As you buy more properties, you’ll be building more industry relationships and gaining valuable knowledge only attained by working out in the trenches. If you’re let down by a real estate agent who over-promised and under-delivered, you’ll be sure to think twice before working with them again. 

You can’t put a price on experience, but at the same time, you need to start somewhere, so don’t let this hold you back from getting started. 

Stay passionate and committed 

Just because you complete training and get licensed as a buyer’s agent, doesn’t guarantee you success. You’re going to need to be prepared to put in the work needed to get results. 

Having a hunger to learn and a drive to initiate change will be critical in helping you stand out amongst the crowd. 

This is your opportunity to live and breathe property and make the dreams of others a reality. 

Rest assured, the Buyer’s Agent Institute will work closely with you to understand what motivates you, whether it’s making money or helping others, to leverage this as a driving force for your success. 

Become a Buyer’s Agent 

What are you waiting for? Start your new career as a buyer’s agent today. Get in touch with the Buyer’s Agent Institute to find out more about initiating your new career in property.

From Funds Manager to Property Expert

Over the span of his working life, Vaibhav Rastogi, also referred to as ‘Rasti’, has learnt how to manage money and investments in both property and financial markets.

With a degree in Architecture and an MBA in Finance, behind him, Vaibhav after working in IT embarked on a career in Funds Management, where he managed over $2 billion of client funds. However, he realised that his passion was best served in helping individuals achieve wealth, rather than those that already have money.

As a successful property investor himself, he felt that helping people achieve success in property by becoming a buyers agent was the right fit for him.

“Eventually, I realised that my value system is more congruent to helping people on the ground level as compared to multiplying money for those who already have it.”

“Property investing is one of the most common, most trusted way of building wealth as we have seen throughout humankind, but at the same time, not everyone makes property investment a success. Property investing is simple but successful property investing is not that simple.”

“That’s where I started using my architecture skills of evaluating a property and its design, investing as a vehicle and understanding it’s not just about capital growth and cash flow, but also about the risk that people tend to overlook in all the excitement.”

Vaibhav had built a personal property portfolio of 15 properties, and his goal is to help others achieve the same or better level of success.

“When I looked back, I realised that I started my property investing journey when I didn’t have much in my pocket, and now, I’m sitting on decent equity – this is exactly what I want to do for my prospective clients.”

“I had been unofficially helping my friends and family, but the whole reason that I wanted to start a business around it is so that I could reach out and help other people beyond my social circle.”

Given his success as an investor, Vaibhav already had a network of people around him that were interested in using his services as a buyer’s agent, which made the transition easier for him.

“Lots of people around me were actually waiting for me to start a business so they could approach me, so the pipeline was already there.”

“The business is going great so far. I run workshops on a monthly basis, where I outline my portfolio approach, referred to as Get Rare Model, and how I built my own portfolio without taking too much risk.”

“Calling myself a professional buyer’s agent has also given me a lot of leverage when I talk to the selling agents as well because they know that I’m actually representing not just only one client, but maybe a handful of clients in one go. Apparently helping me establish the relationship rather one considered as a transaction.”

Despite having a solid background as a successful property investor, Vaibhav decided to reach out to the BAI to gain a better understanding of running the business side of a buyer’s agency as well as to see how others built their businesses.

“Ben and his team at BAI do an amazing job as for me, coming from the corporate world where it was all about teamwork and working together, when I started on my own I realised that I’m all by myself.”

“BAI with their guidance, coaching and mentorship, has given us a network of other fellow buyer’s agents and it’s easy to visualise what a business can potentially look like in, twelve months or even five years.”

Vaibhav’s main focus is working with property investors and given his background and personal success, that was always going to be a good fit. One of the core components of Vaibhav’s methodology is centred around managing risk across an entire property portfolio. In much the same way a share investor looks to diversify, Vaibhav believes having a portfolio approach to both risk and growth is vital. Having worked in research advisory for Financial Planners, he appreciates how essential it is to get the solution client-centric and holistic.

For those people looking to start a career as a buyer’s agent, he feels that passion for property is vital.

“It is such a big responsibility and one has to take it very seriously because clients are giving you the responsibility of buying their property, which is one of the biggest investments they are ever going to make.”

“Buyers Agents also have to have a passion for the people because it’s just not about the properties, but also about the people.“

Lessons from a Billionaire

Buyer's Agent Daniel Trelease on lessons from a Billionaire

Ben Handler:

Welcome to the Buyer’s Agent Institute Show. The purpose of the show is to bring awareness to buyer’s agents, to bring awareness around the career opportunities that the buyer’s agent sector is providing people. To bring awareness around the value that buyer’s agents providing people who need help buying property. Our goal with the show is to strip back, and dive into the remarkable stories, and journeys of buyer’s agents who are paving the way forward in one of the fastest growing career sectors in Australia right now.

Ben Handler:

Our guest today is Daniel Trelease, he is the founder, and CEO of Trelease Associates, the headquarters is based in Sydney, in Double Bay. Daniel prides himself on two key things, number one, customer service, and number two, developing an extraordinary, and exceptional company culture.

Ben Handler:

Daniel’s career is quite remarkable, it’s also very unique where it started. He was headhunted by the former entertainment media billionaire mogul, Robert Stigwood. Robert Stigwood had a country estate in England, and Daniel managed this estate, and looked after, not just property, but art, but also diversified in understanding different business ventures.

Ben Handler:

Daniel was also engaged by high net worth individuals to buy property, and art across New York, and London. Daniel has been in Australia for less than a decade, and brings a very unique energy into his new business. So, I’m very excited to introduce Daniel Trelease today. Welcome Daniel.

Daniel Trelease:

Thank you very much. Thank you for having me.

Ben Handler:

I’ve always been meaning to ask about this whole Robert Stigwood. He’s obviously a billionaire, he was from Australia, he moved to England. I believe he was the first billionaire in the world.

Daniel Trelease:

I don’t know if he was the first, he was certainly one of the first, and I believe he was one of the first, certainly in Australia. But, he was actually born in Adelaide as well, where I was born. And, that’s I believe certainly, after he passed I started thinking about why me, and I think it was, “I’m going to give this young kid from Adelaide a chance.” And, I’ll be forever grateful for that, because that was the start of my journey.

Ben Handler:

But, how did it all come together?

Daniel Trelease:

I was actually working in the executive club lounge at a hotel, the Hyatt Regency at the time, I think it’s the InterContinental now in Adelaide. And, he said to me, “You don’t seem nervous at all.” And, my boss was there holding the silver tray, shaking like this. And, I said, “I don’t know who you are.” And, he just sort of smiled, and said, “That’s great, no worries.”

Daniel Trelease:

And, I went on with my day, and the next time I had to serve him, eventually the president of his companies at the time said to me, “You’d be really good working with us.” And, it just went from there, then they took me to dinner, and discussed the opportunity. I went, and visited the estate, and Robert, and his team in the Isle of Wight at the time in England, and came back made decision, finished my degree, and went to work for them.

Ben Handler:

When I introduced, and said, “Managed the country estate state,” I mean, a lot of people listening to this won’t probably quite grasp what that really means. Do you mind maybe sharing around the size, the number of staff? I mean, you were managing something very large.

Daniel Trelease:

Yeah, I was effectively what they would call a majordomo, which was the head of the household. So, I would manage all of the staff from the nurses, the security, the chefs, the gardeners, then all of his executive team as well, and everyone in between. Hiring, firing, training, and being the conduit between Robert, and a staff member effectively.

Ben Handler:

How many staff members roughly?

Daniel Trelease:

Just on the estate at any given time between 30, and 40.

Ben Handler:

Wow, amazing. So, what did you learn? I mean, obviously that’s a very unique experience for someone to go through, and be part of that whole journey. What is it that you learned? What was the key thing?

Daniel Trelease:

I think that’s probably where I developed most of my people skills. I was exposed to people that I don’t ever read about, or seen on television. He’s obviously, he was the godfather to a number of the Royal Family’s children, that sort of thing he often visited.

Daniel Trelease:

He’s also the man who created Grease, Saturday Night Fever, Cream, Evita, merge companies, Brian Epstein, run the Beatles for a while, et cetera. And, I actually flew to Melbourne at one point to hire the new gentlemen to take over Saturday Night Fever in the West End, and being thrown in the deep end like that with people that I couldn’t even possibly fathom.

Daniel Trelease:

There was actually one point when I hung up the phone on John Travolta by accident. I was just transferring it to Robert’s quarters, and it just cut out, and I was like sugar. So, anyway I got in a lot of trouble for that. But, Look he called back, and he was fine. The lesson I did learn though, is that with that level of power, and wealth does not always come humility, and decency. And, I know that he had a reputation for being an extraordinarily hard person.

Daniel Trelease:

I mean, everyone knows it’s common knowledge he was hung off of his balcony by the Kray twins, which were mafia, because he was monopolizing the industry. And, I remember one point he called me, I was not in working hours, and I was asked to come up to the main house. I had a house on the estate, and I was asked to come up, and he asked me to come up, which was a 15 minute journey from my house to his, kind of thing. Out of hours, on my very few hours off, to pick a pen up next to his bed, and give it to him when there was 20 staff in the house. To show me that’s your place, don’t ever forget it, kind of thing.

Daniel Trelease:

And, I’ll never forget that moment ever, but I’ll also never forget the moments where he enjoyed glass of champagne, and telling me extraordinary stories, which have enriched my life forever. And, I tell them over, and over are.

Ben Handler:

Can you share any of them?

Daniel Trelease:

They’re probably, a lot of them are rather inappropriate, as you can imagine being a billionaire in the sixties, and seventies, that sort of thing, the sorts of things that went on, but they were very entertaining.

Ben Handler:

Let’s talk about Trelease Associates, because what I love so much about the buyer’s agent sector is they’re so many up, and coming new businesses with people like you have extraordinary skill, and talent. That you’ve then transferred now into this space. And, what you’re doing with Trelease Associates is very unique. I’ve obviously been in the space a long time, and I don’t see really anyone out there in Australia doing what you’re doing. So, what’s the purpose behind what you’re doing? And, what are you looking to do?

Daniel Trelease:

I suppose, from my experience with people mostly, I wanted to create something which wasn’t mine, which wasn’t about me. It wasn’t about feeding me, it wasn’t about growing just me. It was about who can I bring into this company to grow with me for the entire journey. And, I’m not just talking about staff retention. I created Trelease Associates, because I’m the sole owner right now, but it’s created, so then there’s people like, and he most certainly will be Jeremy Bedwani, who I believe is just as important to the success of this company as myself.

Daniel Trelease:

And, I don’t believe it could be what it is even today, 14 months on without him as an example, and other heads of divisions too. So, Trelease Associates was created, so there’ll be associates. There will be obviously myself as the founder, but in time there will be stakeholders like Jeremy, and others in the future as well. So, they own a piece of this company, a significant piece, and it’s not bought, it’s gifted to them.

Daniel Trelease:

It’s about creating a culture where we’re all building a family, a business that can become nationwide, possibly larger, but that’s not the goal. Where we’re working towards a common goal, and every single day I can honestly tell you, we joke, we laugh, we have an amazing time. And, yes there’s difficult times too, and we expect that, and we learn from that, we pivot like we have during COVID.

Ben Handler:

Yeah, and it’s apparent from the outside looking in around what you’re doing. It’s very different, and it seems, as I said earlier, very unique. Let’s talk about the confidentiality part.

Daniel Trelease:

Yeah.

Ben Handler:

That’s something that no one’s doing. Most people in the buyer’s agent space, social media, advertising, it’s all about just bought. You’ve taken a very different approach, do you mind sharing why, and what you’re doing?

Daniel Trelease:

I believe that we’re in customer service, and customer service after spending well over a decade in London, New York, I even lived in Greece for six months. I just feel that it’s missing from the fabric of our society here in Australia. You go to a restaurant, that’s not service. It’s appalling in my eyes. I wanted to create something where the confidentiality piece, we didn’t leverage on our client, and what we bought for them to self promote. We were engaged by our client to source, and to secure a property for them, whether it be investment, whether it be primary residence.

Daniel Trelease:

Not then to plaster that over social media, or to leak it to the media, that sort of thing. It’s about discretion, it’s about a different level of service that Australians perhaps are not entirely used to. That would be expected in say London, and confidentiality is not necessary for all of our clients. Not at all. Most in fact, do not require it, but it is absolutely there for the clients who do.

Daniel Trelease:

It doesn’t just revolve around the confidentiality upon exchange. For example, where the client’s identity is held confidentially with a confidentiality deed signed by the sales agent, the sales agency principal, myself as the principal of Trelease Associates, the buyer’s agent that may have been acting for that buyer, our buyer, and the vendor. All signed, so it’s basically just an extra signature before they sign the contract.

Ben Handler:

Every transaction?

Daniel Trelease:

Not every transaction for the clients that require this. Every client can have it if they wish. Some clients don’t wish for it, they just don’t care, it’s not necessary. Absolutely fine. But, it’s more about what about their buying power? Because, their buying power is usually exposed to most sales agents, because I’ve been looking for one, two, three, six, 12 months before engaging buyer’s agent. Therefore, it’s about confidentiality around the client themselves during the process.

Daniel Trelease:

So, some of these clients, we had one recently that had full confidentiality. No one knows what we bought, no one knows how much we bought it for, and no one is allowed to disclose. That client was even searching at the time. So, that client’s buying power was also confidential. Therefore, because the agents understood where their budget may have been, they needed to know this, they were just working with client five at Trelease Associates.

Ben Handler:

Yeah, it’s extraordinary. And, let’s talk about leadership obviously, and actually before we dive into leadership, I would think that when I opened up, I talked about one of your principles is customer service. It seems like it’s clear, it runs through the DNA of your entire company. Has that been inherited from Robert Stigwood?

Daniel Trelease:

Absolutely.

Ben Handler:

Yeah.

Daniel Trelease:

Unequivocally. I mean, even from my hospitality days, I mean, I remember when my parents didn’t want me to go to acting school, and that sort of thing, which was my passion as a young man. They wanted me to finish my degree, and that sort of thing as I did. But, during that I was working from 16, 15, whatever it was onwards. And, I ended up in silver service in a five star hotel in Adelaide. Therefore, I was poached from Robert, and moved to England.

Daniel Trelease:

And, naturally when you’re serving people from the Royal Family, you’re serving Robert himself, it’s all silver service. And it is the hand behind the back. You’re pretty much leaving the room, walking backwards, that kind of thing. It was very intense. It’s a level of service that almost is nonexistent today, but I revere it.

Ben Handler:

Wow, so you, from being exposed to that, you’ve been able to now transfer just that high quality, because you’re right Australia, it’s poor service.

Daniel Trelease:

Very.

Ben Handler:

And, especially when you go to the States, and come back, you just notice that distinction. So, obviously working at the estate in the UK, you were managing, you were hiring, you were firing, you were strategizing, you were organizing, coordinating, you are a leader. I think we’re all leaders in our own right. Now, you’re running your new company. You’ve got people in various divisions in different States. Has your understanding of leadership changed at all?

Daniel Trelease:

Every day, every single day. Every day I’m learning, even Jeremy, and I learned from each other every day. And, we strategize together every day. But, even after Robert when I worked for TDA Interiors, for example, under Richard Taylor, the founder of TDA Interiors were still operational in South of England, and in central London too. And, watching those different leadership styles from Robert, which is an extraordinary style, I suppose, all the way through to Richard, which was very commercial.

Daniel Trelease:

And, I look at myself as a highly emotional being, hight EQ. Jeremy, high IQ, and very commercial. So, the ying and yang work exceptionally well. We couldn’t be more different in our leadership styles, and that’s probably why we work so well together to create a company that is, I certainly hope I’m right in saying this, not only humble, and not only caring, and compassionate, but we genuinely love, and care for the people inside those walls. And, we will protect them, and nurture them and help them grow, and that’s one of Jeremy’s primary role.

Daniel Trelease:

So, the leadership isn’t just for me, it is across the team. We’ve got Kim Ackerman who’s basically writing the Trelease Associates handbook, for example. On her own accord she came to us. I believe that leadership needs to go across the spectrum of the company, and not just dripped down from the top. I don’t believe in the hierarchy, and the older models. Could be wrong, but at the moment it seems to be doing very well. And, the company as a whole, and the staff are enjoying this leadership style.

Ben Handler:

I agree, the leadership always should really move from the bottom up. And, the fact you’ve got this lady in your office who’s put her hand up to say-

Daniel Trelease:

Absolutely.

Ben Handler:

…I want to take lead with this, is a clear, I guess, indication, and reflection demonstration of what’s really going on in the company. Because, it seems not just customer service is something that runs throughout your entire company, it’s something that obviously you pride so much.

Ben Handler:

Because, I remember back at the Cohen Handler days, you were always having dinner at 10:00 at night at a restaurant with the 65 year old client. And, it seems like you were just forging these very close friendships. So, outside of a transaction your client relationships now becoming friendships, right?

Daniel Trelease:

Yeah, look, there’s three, four clients that have had babies during, or after being a client of mine, and I’ve been in the hospital before they’ve even gotten home with their baby. And, I’ve got 60, 70, 80 plus year old clients who I still take to dinner, because they’re alone, and I truly enjoy their company. I’m an old soul, a lot will say I’m like an eight year old Jewish man, and that’s the joke in the office.

Daniel Trelease:

I suppose I do definitely connect to older people far more than younger. I love being around the youth, and the energy like Jack Henderson in our office, fantastic. He always prides himself, he was a minor, he didn’t finish school, and look at him now.

Ben Handler:

The Flamingo.

Daniel Trelease:

Yes, the Flamingo, right. And, then we’ve got lawyers, and we’ve got forensic accountants, and all sorts of people as well in the company. So, education as well I don’t believe is a factor. You cannot train passion, you cannot train hustle, you can only train skill. And, that’s the biggest lesson that we’ve learned over the last six to 12 months is that don’t just hire someone that’s been in real estate, and need to unravel bad habits, for example. Hire someone who has the passion, hire someone who has the hustle ingrained in them, that is innate in them. Then, and only then let’s train those people.

Ben Handler:

I love it. What do you love about real estate?

Daniel Trelease:

I have to say it’s not even the real estate. It’s the people, because every day I meet someone new, a different character, whether it be a flamingo or something else brought into our life to enrich our lives. And, we’ve got incredibly diverse team of people, and we’re hiring at the moment. So, there’s more people that are coming on board. Some of them are quite characters as well, but you know what, everyone who sits in front of us in the boardroom is different too.

Daniel Trelease:

Some are going to suit my demeanor, and my character. Some are going to suit Jack’s or Kim’s or Annabelle’s or whoever’s. And, that’s why also we need to figure out who aren’t we servicing, who aren’t we helping, and how can we help them. So, we’re looking at a commercial division that has never been done before. We have tried, it didn’t pan out the way Jeremy, and I had wanted it to, and that’s fine.

Daniel Trelease:

We live, and we learn, we pivot, and we evolve. And, now we’re looking at someone who, whether this person comes to fruition or not, this is someone who is at very high level, and was head of acquisitions for a very well known firm. And, we’re looking at bringing them on, so we can service the commercial clients, and buyers out there.

Daniel Trelease:

We’re looking at the property management division that we’re building very assertively, and right now we’re only six months away from launching Brisbane. Less than 12 months away from launching Mosman. And, it’s about not expanding too quickly, not trying to take over any kind of world domination, as they say, it’s about who can we service, and service well.

Daniel Trelease:

And, you know what? Sometimes we’ll fail, so we’ll pivot, we’ll try again, or we’ll move on, and we want to figure out what we’re great at. And, that’s been my biggest lesson, what I’m great at, and what I’m not so great at. Hence, why Jeremy is my ying to my yang, because I know I am not great at many of the skillsets that he is prolific in.

Ben Handler:

Yeah, you clearly compliment each other.

Daniel Trelease:

Absolutely, yeah.

Ben Handler:

And, you’ve got different skillsets, different personalities, and that’s what makes a partnership.

Daniel Trelease:

Yeah.

Ben Handler:

And, that’s what grows the company, and that’s what balances off everyone.

Daniel Trelease:

Yeah.

Ben Handler:

Some people who are the more touchy-feely EQ, they’re going to come to you. And, the other ones who aren’t, they’re going to gravitate towards Jeremy, and it works.

Daniel Trelease:

Absolutely.

Ben Handler:

We could be here for hours. We need to do a round two, because we need to hear about some of the stories, if you’re open to sharing. I love your background, I think it’s… I get excited seeing people coming into this space with just, I guess, exposure to life.

Daniel Trelease:

Yeah.

Ben Handler:

Exposure to life, and your exposure is what very few people on this planet have exposure to. And, it’s incredible to see how you’ve brought this into your new business. And, it’s very, you can recognize it very quickly. Just drive past your office in Double Bay, or of anyone watching this now just check out Trelease Associates, right. You can feel it when you look at your brand, it’s something different. And, it’s definitely something that, from what I see, you’ve picked up from what you’ve cultivated previously just in what you’ve learned. For people watching, where can people find Trelease Associates?

Daniel Trelease:

Yeah, look I mean, treleaseassociates.com.au would be the first protocol I think for anyone to have a feel for our company, and who we are, but I’m always an advocate for picking up the phone. Don’t need to email, pick up the phone, and call me. Call me direct, call Jeremy direct, have a conversation. And, if we have a great call get inside, and meet us.

Ben Handler:

Love it. Thank you, appreciate it. We’re going to do a round two. Just finishing up now. Okay, so I hope you enjoyed the discussion, especially around what Daniel learned in his previous career, because that’s very important in terms of how you transfer that into your obviously, new career if you’re looking to do something different.

Ben Handler:

For anyone who’s actually looking to potentially join a company, and become a buyer’s agent, check out Trelease Associates. As Daniel said give him a call, give Jeremy a call, go to their website, see their brand. Actually, look at a lot of the buyers agents that exist, and see if you notice anything different about how they present, what they do, their messaging. I believe you’ll see something quite distinct.

Ben Handler:

So, pick up the phone if you want to chat. And, if you’re someone who’s even looking to buy a property, and you’re looking for that exceptional customer experience, that journey, check out Trelease Associates as well. See you next week.

Please watch the full episode here:

Ben Handler:

Welcome to the Buyer’s Agent Institute Show. The purpose of the show is to bring awareness to buyer’s agents, to bring awareness around the career opportunities that the buyer’s agent sector is providing people. To bring awareness around the value that buyer’s agents providing people who need help buying property. Our goal with the show is to strip back, and dive into the remarkable stories, and journeys of buyer’s agents who are paving the way forward in one of the fastest growing career sectors in Australia right now.

Ben Handler:

Our guest today is Daniel Trelease, he is the founder, and CEO of Trelease Associates, the headquarters is based in Sydney, in Double Bay. Daniel prides himself on two key things, number one, customer service, and number two, developing an extraordinary, and exceptional company culture.

Ben Handler:

Daniel’s career is quite remarkable, it’s also very unique where it started. He was headhunted by the former entertainment media billionaire mogul, Robert Stigwood. Robert Stigwood had a country estate in England, and Daniel managed this estate, and looked after, not just property, but art, but also diversified in understanding different business ventures.

Ben Handler:

Daniel was also engaged by high net worth individuals to buy property, and art across New York, and London. Daniel has been in Australia for less than a decade, and brings a very unique energy into his new business. So, I’m very excited to introduce Daniel Trelease today. Welcome Daniel.

Daniel Trelease:

Thank you very much. Thank you for having me.

Ben Handler:

I’ve always been meaning to ask about this whole Robert Stigwood. He’s obviously a billionaire, he was from Australia, he moved to England. I believe he was the first billionaire in the world.

Daniel Trelease:

I don’t know if he was the first, he was certainly one of the first, and I believe he was one of the first, certainly in Australia. But, he was actually born in Adelaide as well, where I was born. And, that’s I believe certainly, after he passed I started thinking about why me, and I think it was, “I’m going to give this young kid from Adelaide a chance.” And, I’ll be forever grateful for that, because that was the start of my journey.

Ben Handler:

But, how did it all come together?

Daniel Trelease:

I was actually working in the executive club lounge at a hotel, the Hyatt Regency at the time, I think it’s the InterContinental now in Adelaide. And, he said to me, “You don’t seem nervous at all.” And, my boss was there holding the silver tray, shaking like this. And, I said, “I don’t know who you are.” And, he just sort of smiled, and said, “That’s great, no worries.”

Daniel Trelease:

And, I went on with my day, and the next time I had to serve him, eventually the president of his companies at the time said to me, “You’d be really good working with us.” And, it just went from there, then they took me to dinner, and discussed the opportunity. I went, and visited the estate, and Robert, and his team in the Isle of Wight at the time in England, and came back made decision, finished my degree, and went to work for them.

Ben Handler:

When I introduced, and said, “Managed the country estate state,” I mean, a lot of people listening to this won’t probably quite grasp what that really means. Do you mind maybe sharing around the size, the number of staff? I mean, you were managing something very large.

Daniel Trelease:

Yeah, I was effectively what they would call a majordomo, which was the head of the household. So, I would manage all of the staff from the nurses, the security, the chefs, the gardeners, then all of his executive team as well, and everyone in between. Hiring, firing, training, and being the conduit between Robert, and a staff member effectively.

Ben Handler:

How many staff members roughly?

Daniel Trelease:

Just on the estate at any given time between 30, and 40.

Ben Handler:

Wow, amazing. So, what did you learn? I mean, obviously that’s a very unique experience for someone to go through, and be part of that whole journey. What is it that you learned? What was the key thing?

Daniel Trelease:

I think that’s probably where I developed most of my people skills. I was exposed to people that I don’t ever read about, or seen on television. He’s obviously, he was the godfather to a number of the Royal Family’s children, that sort of thing he often visited.

Daniel Trelease:

He’s also the man who created Grease, Saturday Night Fever, Cream, Evita, merge companies, Brian Epstein, run the Beatles for a while, et cetera. And, I actually flew to Melbourne at one point to hire the new gentlemen to take over Saturday Night Fever in the West End, and being thrown in the deep end like that with people that I couldn’t even possibly fathom.

Daniel Trelease:

There was actually one point when I hung up the phone on John Travolta by accident. I was just transferring it to Robert’s quarters, and it just cut out, and I was like sugar. So, anyway I got in a lot of trouble for that. But, Look he called back, and he was fine. The lesson I did learn though, is that with that level of power, and wealth does not always come humility, and decency. And, I know that he had a reputation for being an extraordinarily hard person.

Daniel Trelease:

I mean, everyone knows it’s common knowledge he was hung off of his balcony by the Kray twins, which were mafia, because he was monopolizing the industry. And, I remember one point he called me, I was not in working hours, and I was asked to come up to the main house. I had a house on the estate, and I was asked to come up, and he asked me to come up, which was a 15 minute journey from my house to his, kind of thing. Out of hours, on my very few hours off, to pick a pen up next to his bed, and give it to him when there was 20 staff in the house. To show me that’s your place, don’t ever forget it, kind of thing.

Daniel Trelease:

And, I’ll never forget that moment ever, but I’ll also never forget the moments where he enjoyed glass of champagne, and telling me extraordinary stories, which have enriched my life forever. And, I tell them over, and over are.

Ben Handler:

Can you share any of them?

Daniel Trelease:

They’re probably, a lot of them are rather inappropriate, as you can imagine being a billionaire in the sixties, and seventies, that sort of thing, the sorts of things that went on, but they were very entertaining.

Ben Handler:

Let’s talk about Trelease Associates, because what I love so much about the buyer’s agent sector is they’re so many up, and coming new businesses with people like you have extraordinary skill, and talent. That you’ve then transferred now into this space. And, what you’re doing with Trelease Associates is very unique. I’ve obviously been in the space a long time, and I don’t see really anyone out there in Australia doing what you’re doing. So, what’s the purpose behind what you’re doing? And, what are you looking to do?

Daniel Trelease:

I suppose, from my experience with people mostly, I wanted to create something which wasn’t mine, which wasn’t about me. It wasn’t about feeding me, it wasn’t about growing just me. It was about who can I bring into this company to grow with me for the entire journey. And, I’m not just talking about staff retention. I created Trelease Associates, because I’m the sole owner right now, but it’s created, so then there’s people like, and he most certainly will be Jeremy Bedwani, who I believe is just as important to the success of this company as myself.

Daniel Trelease:

And, I don’t believe it could be what it is even today, 14 months on without him as an example, and other heads of divisions too. So, Trelease Associates was created, so there’ll be associates. There will be obviously myself as the founder, but in time there will be stakeholders like Jeremy, and others in the future as well. So, they own a piece of this company, a significant piece, and it’s not bought, it’s gifted to them.

Daniel Trelease:

It’s about creating a culture where we’re all building a family, a business that can become nationwide, possibly larger, but that’s not the goal. Where we’re working towards a common goal, and every single day I can honestly tell you, we joke, we laugh, we have an amazing time. And, yes there’s difficult times too, and we expect that, and we learn from that, we pivot like we have during COVID.

Ben Handler:

Yeah, and it’s apparent from the outside looking in around what you’re doing. It’s very different, and it seems, as I said earlier, very unique. Let’s talk about the confidentiality part.

Daniel Trelease:

Yeah.

Ben Handler:

That’s something that no one’s doing. Most people in the buyer’s agent space, social media, advertising, it’s all about just bought. You’ve taken a very different approach, do you mind sharing why, and what you’re doing?

Daniel Trelease:

I believe that we’re in customer service, and customer service after spending well over a decade in London, New York, I even lived in Greece for six months. I just feel that it’s missing from the fabric of our society here in Australia. You go to a restaurant, that’s not service. It’s appalling in my eyes. I wanted to create something where the confidentiality piece, we didn’t leverage on our client, and what we bought for them to self promote. We were engaged by our client to source, and to secure a property for them, whether it be investment, whether it be primary residence.

Daniel Trelease:

Not then to plaster that over social media, or to leak it to the media, that sort of thing. It’s about discretion, it’s about a different level of service that Australians perhaps are not entirely used to. That would be expected in say London, and confidentiality is not necessary for all of our clients. Not at all. Most in fact, do not require it, but it is absolutely there for the clients who do.

Daniel Trelease:

It doesn’t just revolve around the confidentiality upon exchange. For example, where the client’s identity is held confidentially with a confidentiality deed signed by the sales agent, the sales agency principal, myself as the principal of Trelease Associates, the buyer’s agent that may have been acting for that buyer, our buyer, and the vendor. All signed, so it’s basically just an extra signature before they sign the contract.

Ben Handler:

Every transaction?

Daniel Trelease:

Not every transaction for the clients that require this. Every client can have it if they wish. Some clients don’t wish for it, they just don’t care, it’s not necessary. Absolutely fine. But, it’s more about what about their buying power? Because, their buying power is usually exposed to most sales agents, because I’ve been looking for one, two, three, six, 12 months before engaging buyer’s agent. Therefore, it’s about confidentiality around the client themselves during the process.

Daniel Trelease:

So, some of these clients, we had one recently that had full confidentiality. No one knows what we bought, no one knows how much we bought it for, and no one is allowed to disclose. That client was even searching at the time. So, that client’s buying power was also confidential. Therefore, because the agents understood where their budget may have been, they needed to know this, they were just working with client five at Trelease Associates.

Ben Handler:

Yeah, it’s extraordinary. And, let’s talk about leadership obviously, and actually before we dive into leadership, I would think that when I opened up, I talked about one of your principles is customer service. It seems like it’s clear, it runs through the DNA of your entire company. Has that been inherited from Robert Stigwood?

Daniel Trelease:

Absolutely.

Ben Handler:

Yeah.

Daniel Trelease:

Unequivocally. I mean, even from my hospitality days, I mean, I remember when my parents didn’t want me to go to acting school, and that sort of thing, which was my passion as a young man. They wanted me to finish my degree, and that sort of thing as I did. But, during that I was working from 16, 15, whatever it was onwards. And, I ended up in silver service in a five star hotel in Adelaide. Therefore, I was poached from Robert, and moved to England.

Daniel Trelease:

And, naturally when you’re serving people from the Royal Family, you’re serving Robert himself, it’s all silver service. And it is the hand behind the back. You’re pretty much leaving the room, walking backwards, that kind of thing. It was very intense. It’s a level of service that almost is nonexistent today, but I revere it.

Ben Handler:

Wow, so you, from being exposed to that, you’ve been able to now transfer just that high quality, because you’re right Australia, it’s poor service.

Daniel Trelease:

Very.

Ben Handler:

And, especially when you go to the States, and come back, you just notice that distinction. So, obviously working at the estate in the UK, you were managing, you were hiring, you were firing, you were strategizing, you were organizing, coordinating, you are a leader. I think we’re all leaders in our own right. Now, you’re running your new company. You’ve got people in various divisions in different States. Has your understanding of leadership changed at all?

Daniel Trelease:

Every day, every single day. Every day I’m learning, even Jeremy, and I learned from each other every day. And, we strategize together every day. But, even after Robert when I worked for TDA Interiors, for example, under Richard Taylor, the founder of TDA Interiors were still operational in South of England, and in central London too. And, watching those different leadership styles from Robert, which is an extraordinary style, I suppose, all the way through to Richard, which was very commercial.

Daniel Trelease:

And, I look at myself as a highly emotional being, hight EQ. Jeremy, high IQ, and very commercial. So, the ying and yang work exceptionally well. We couldn’t be more different in our leadership styles, and that’s probably why we work so well together to create a company that is, I certainly hope I’m right in saying this, not only humble, and not only caring, and compassionate, but we genuinely love, and care for the people inside those walls. And, we will protect them, and nurture them and help them grow, and that’s one of Jeremy’s primary role.

Daniel Trelease:

So, the leadership isn’t just for me, it is across the team. We’ve got Kim Ackerman who’s basically writing the Trelease Associates handbook, for example. On her own accord she came to us. I believe that leadership needs to go across the spectrum of the company, and not just dripped down from the top. I don’t believe in the hierarchy, and the older models. Could be wrong, but at the moment it seems to be doing very well. And, the company as a whole, and the staff are enjoying this leadership style.

Ben Handler:

I agree, the leadership always should really move from the bottom up. And, the fact you’ve got this lady in your office who’s put her hand up to say-

Daniel Trelease:

Absolutely.

Ben Handler:

…I want to take lead with this, is a clear, I guess, indication, and reflection demonstration of what’s really going on in the company. Because, it seems not just customer service is something that runs throughout your entire company, it’s something that obviously you pride so much.

Ben Handler:

Because, I remember back at the Cohen Handler days, you were always having dinner at 10:00 at night at a restaurant with the 65 year old client. And, it seems like you were just forging these very close friendships. So, outside of a transaction your client relationships now becoming friendships, right?

Daniel Trelease:

Yeah, look, there’s three, four clients that have had babies during, or after being a client of mine, and I’ve been in the hospital before they’ve even gotten home with their baby. And, I’ve got 60, 70, 80 plus year old clients who I still take to dinner, because they’re alone, and I truly enjoy their company. I’m an old soul, a lot will say I’m like an eight year old Jewish man, and that’s the joke in the office.

Daniel Trelease:

I suppose I do definitely connect to older people far more than younger. I love being around the youth, and the energy like Jack Henderson in our office, fantastic. He always prides himself, he was a minor, he didn’t finish school, and look at him now.

Ben Handler:

The Flamingo.

Daniel Trelease:

Yes, the Flamingo, right. And, then we’ve got lawyers, and we’ve got forensic accountants, and all sorts of people as well in the company. So, education as well I don’t believe is a factor. You cannot train passion, you cannot train hustle, you can only train skill. And, that’s the biggest lesson that we’ve learned over the last six to 12 months is that don’t just hire someone that’s been in real estate, and need to unravel bad habits, for example. Hire someone who has the passion, hire someone who has the hustle ingrained in them, that is innate in them. Then, and only then let’s train those people.

Ben Handler:

I love it. What do you love about real estate?

Daniel Trelease:

I have to say it’s not even the real estate. It’s the people, because every day I meet someone new, a different character, whether it be a flamingo or something else brought into our life to enrich our lives. And, we’ve got incredibly diverse team of people, and we’re hiring at the moment. So, there’s more people that are coming on board. Some of them are quite characters as well, but you know what, everyone who sits in front of us in the boardroom is different too.

Daniel Trelease:

Some are going to suit my demeanor, and my character. Some are going to suit Jack’s or Kim’s or Annabelle’s or whoever’s. And, that’s why also we need to figure out who aren’t we servicing, who aren’t we helping, and how can we help them. So, we’re looking at a commercial division that has never been done before. We have tried, it didn’t pan out the way Jeremy, and I had wanted it to, and that’s fine.

Daniel Trelease:

We live, and we learn, we pivot, and we evolve. And, now we’re looking at someone who, whether this person comes to fruition or not, this is someone who is at very high level, and was head of acquisitions for a very well known firm. And, we’re looking at bringing them on, so we can service the commercial clients, and buyers out there.

Daniel Trelease:

We’re looking at the property management division that we’re building very assertively, and right now we’re only six months away from launching Brisbane. Less than 12 months away from launching Mosman. And, it’s about not expanding too quickly, not trying to take over any kind of world domination, as they say, it’s about who can we service, and service well.

Daniel Trelease:

And, you know what? Sometimes we’ll fail, so we’ll pivot, we’ll try again, or we’ll move on, and we want to figure out what we’re great at. And, that’s been my biggest lesson, what I’m great at, and what I’m not so great at. Hence, why Jeremy is my ying to my yang, because I know I am not great at many of the skillsets that he is prolific in.

Ben Handler:

Yeah, you clearly compliment each other.

Daniel Trelease:

Absolutely, yeah.

Ben Handler:

And, you’ve got different skillsets, different personalities, and that’s what makes a partnership.

Daniel Trelease:

Yeah.

Ben Handler:

And, that’s what grows the company, and that’s what balances off everyone.

Daniel Trelease:

Yeah.

Ben Handler:

Some people who are the more touchy-feely EQ, they’re going to come to you. And, the other ones who aren’t, they’re going to gravitate towards Jeremy, and it works.

Daniel Trelease:

Absolutely.

Ben Handler:

We could be here for hours. We need to do a round two, because we need to hear about some of the stories, if you’re open to sharing. I love your background, I think it’s… I get excited seeing people coming into this space with just, I guess, exposure to life.

Daniel Trelease:

Yeah.

Ben Handler:

Exposure to life, and your exposure is what very few people on this planet have exposure to. And, it’s incredible to see how you’ve brought this into your new business. And, it’s very, you can recognize it very quickly. Just drive past your office in Double Bay, or of anyone watching this now just check out Trelease Associates, right. You can feel it when you look at your brand, it’s something different. And, it’s definitely something that, from what I see, you’ve picked up from what you’ve cultivated previously just in what you’ve learned. For people watching, where can people find Trelease Associates?

Daniel Trelease:

Yeah, look I mean, treleaseassociates.com.au would be the first protocol I think for anyone to have a feel for our company, and who we are, but I’m always an advocate for picking up the phone. Don’t need to email, pick up the phone, and call me. Call me direct, call Jeremy direct, have a conversation. And, if we have a great call get inside, and meet us.

Ben Handler:

Love it. Thank you, appreciate it. We’re going to do a round two. Just finishing up now. Okay, so I hope you enjoyed the discussion, especially around what Daniel learned in his previous career, because that’s very important in terms of how you transfer that into your obviously, new career if you’re looking to do something different.

Ben Handler:

For anyone who’s actually looking to potentially join a company, and become a buyer’s agent, check out Trelease Associates. As Daniel said give him a call, give Jeremy a call, go to their website, see their brand. Actually, look at a lot of the buyers agents that exist, and see if you notice anything different about how they present, what they do, their messaging. I believe you’ll see something quite distinct.

Ben Handler:

So, pick up the phone if you want to chat. And, if you’re someone who’s even looking to buy a property, and you’re looking for that exceptional customer experience, that journey, check out Trelease Associates as well. See you next week.

Please watch the full episode here:

Data-Driven Property Investment

Buyer's agent Kyrillos Mansour

Before becoming a full-time buyers agent, Kyrillos Mansour clearly had a passion for property.

While learning what fundamentals drove property price growth, he built up his own database of every suburb in Australia, with 100 data points per suburb. At the time, Kyrillos was working as an optometrist, but he quickly realised his passion lay elsewhere in property.

“I always had an interest in property and in business. While I was working as an optometrist, I was doing my own property investing and I was building up my own database of information and research regarding different suburbs in different states in Australia because at the time I didn’t really have enough money to invest in Sydney.”

“I thought, if I want to invest outside of Sydney, I need to learn about the other suburbs in different states.”

Kyrillos built a huge database and quickly built up an understanding of how to identify suburbs and areas that were set to grow in value rapidly.

“I started compiling my own data and that became a huge Excel spreadsheet of every single home in every state in Australia – about 60 to 100 data points per suburb and I just kept getting more interested, more fascinated.”

“I started seeing how property can make people money and how you can generate wealth and pretty much just fell in love with it from that point on.”

After successfully building his own property portfolio, he was quickly approached by friends and family to help them achieve success in the same fashion as him.

“After I had bought my first few investments myself, a few friends and family members asked me, “how did you know about that suburb? How did you know where to go and the strategies to use?” So I started sharing my spreadsheet and data, with them.”

“In the end, I was pretty much doing a buyer’s agent’s job for them and really enjoying it.”

After making the decision to move into helping others achieve success as a buyers agent, Kyrillos slowly started to build up his business.

“The business itself is only just over 12 months old, but I’ve been buying property for people for around three years.”

“The first 12 months is always difficult no matter what business it is. I think a buyer’s agent is even harder because it doesn’t really exist in Australia, it’s such a small industry.”

After a slow start, he focused on giving value and educating others on property and then the business started to grow.

“For the first four months there were no customers, then we got the first customer and it was quite a big achievement.”’

“It took a while to go from number one to customer two. It took a little bit of time from two to three. Once we got to about five done, it just started to roll like the compound interest rule – the same thing with people.”

“This month I think we’ve been working on seven clients in a month.”

“The first 12 months has been a huge learning curve in terms of how to get customers and I see other buyer’s agents who probably achieve customers quicker, but I think the way I approached it about free education, giving out, giving out, it’s bringing in quality leads as well and building a brand.”

With his background in data, Kyrillos helps all types of home buyers and investors, locate properties all across the country.

When Kyrillos was getting the business off the ground, he was able to reach out to the BAI, to help at times when it was difficult finding the right way to move forward with the business.

“My idea of the Buyer’s Agent Institute course when I first started was someone’s going to teach me how to buy property. Very quickly I realised that wasn’t it. It was more so how to run a buyer’s agency business.”

“When I was first starting and I was a bit struggling to get any sort of leads, I used to message Ben. I said, “Hey, Ben. I’m struggling a bit. What do you reckon?” He said, “Yeah, come in for a chat”.

“When we spoke about things he said, “How about you explore this option? How about you explore that? He wanted to see me succeed.”

Going forward, Kyrillos’ goal is to both educate and help people achieve success through his company First Brick Property.

For people looking to get into a career as a buyers agent, Kyrillos suggests you need to be passionate and be looking to do it for the right reason.

“You’ve got be passionate about it, you’ve got to really understand it.”

“Equip yourself with the fundamentals of property by listening to every podcast you can find, read every book you can find, learn about all the different strategies you can find because everyone in Australia’s a property expert so if you’re going to charge for it, you really need to know what you’re talking about.

This Is How You Can Use Your Skills Wisely

Buyer's Agent Anthony Spagnolo on how you can use your skills wisely

Ben Handler:

Welcome to the Buyer’s Agents Institute show. The purpose of the show is to bring awareness to buyers agents to bring awareness around the career opportunities at the buyer’s agent sector is providing people to bring awareness around the value that buyers AINS providing to people who need help buying property. Our goal with the show is to strip back and dive into the remarkable stories and journeys of buyers agents who are paving the way forward in one of the fastest growing career sectors in real estate in Australia. Right now. Our guest today is Anthony Spagnolo. He runs Agenzia in Western Sydney and he has got a very, very in depth level I believe of diverse experience. He brings to the table, he’s a licensed real estate agent. He’s a qualified accountant. He’s a licensed builder. He is a property developer and he’s also stayed at university, a bachelor of commerce and accounting and he runs his buyer’s agent business to focus on higher yielding properties across Australia.

He primarily, at the moment, he’s focusing in Queensland and he’s also taken a focus, which we’ll talk about in this show, in an area in a disability area called NDS. That’s the acronym which we’ll dive into soon. I’m super excited to dive into this discussion with Anthony today. I’d like to introduce Anthony.

Anthony Spagnolo:

Thanks for having me. Thanks for the intro.

Ben Handler:

Did I get that intro? Okay. I would say there’s a lot of good skills you bring to the table. It’s obviously very diverse. Do a lot of declines. Have a talk about what you bring to the table. Uh, let’s turn the truth.

Anthony Spagnolo:

Uh, to tell you the truth, it’s throughout, it’s in trying to find my actual job title to this point. So I’ve, yeah, Buyer’s agent is just the part of what I do is essentially had an accounting business for 12 years, moved out of that space into property development and my love for real estate. It’s led me down this path into, uh, into becoming a buyer’s agent or property strategist as such.

Ben Handler:

So you didn’t strike me as the accountant.

Anthony Spagnolo:

Well, that’s why I’m of of diversified. Uh, it’s, it was good stepping stone. Um, gave me broad, a broader, uh, range of knowledge I guess, and uh, onto the nexts project, which is now my passion for property. So, um, we’re really trying to push this business to take it to the next level.

Ben Handler:

Yeah. I, I mean, I really do believe you bring a lot to the table. I mean, having an accounting background, focusing in development and understanding building and obviously buying property yourself. I mean, it’s a lot you bring to the table and so it’s going to be exciting to see how you roll this into this new business of yours. You, we talked earlier and I know that you, you, you’ve put a focus into, obviously you focus on high yielding properties, but you’ve taken a, uh, a liking and a focus into what is called NDIS. Yes. Do you mind sharing like what is NDIS and NDIS stands for?

Anthony Spagnolo:

National Disability Insurance Scheme. And the part of the plans that we’re focusing on is called SDA, which is Specialized Disability Accommodation. It’s a fairly new scheme, early sort of been legislated in the last, uh, two years. Uh, most of the properties are only under construction at the moment. That’s new builds because it’s so complex and there’s a lot of compliance to be, uh, SDA approved so that the participants who are the people with disabilities or tech tenants can move into these properties cause they have to obviously be, uh, purposely built and signed off on. So they’re, um, regulated I guess. So. So essentially there’s 30,000 participants or people waiting to get a sufficient housing, uh, Australia wide. So yes, there’s a lot there. That’s the supply. The supply can’t meet the demand currently.

Ben Handler:

My next question is like, why did you take a liking and a focus into this?

Anthony Spagnolo:

Uh, it was through a chance, um, conversation or meeting with a colleague of mine who’s based in Brisbane. Uh, he was representing a company up there and I said, why didn’t you have a look at this is unbelievable returns, uh, often between 10 to 20% a year, net yields per annum. So I said, well, that got me sort of looking at it. Also, I have a cousin that has, uh, had cerebral palsy and can and have, it’s close to my heart. I guess that seeing what families go through behind the scenes as well as knowing some other, um, uh, participants and meeting a lot, uh, throughout our journey of doing research and reverse engineering the whole process. It’s just, uh, it’s taken us down the path that we, we feel, uh, an obligation to work, work out all the moving parts so that we can, um, yeah, help, help, uh, provide the specialized housing to these people.

Ben Handler:

I don’t know a lot about this space, but, well, from what I read in here, it seems complicated. And for someone like you who’s got a special cause, um, it’s, it’s, it’s close to your heart. You obviously know property very well. And so it seems like you’re going to be this perfect solution to come to the table to help make the experience a lot easier for people. Why do you think it’s been so difficult?

Anthony Spagnolo:

Well the, the, it’s not like just, uh, purchasing a standard property for, for an investor, then taking a tour and an agent to manage it and find tenants. Uh, it’s basically you gotta start from the ground up prior to finding the location, which means that you’ve got to deal with care providers. There’s 7,000, uh, accommodation care providers or thereabouts, Australia wide. So you can’t just build it in a certain location and hope that they will come. It’s a matter of going to these care providers or coordinators to work out which clients in which areas are requiring which level of housing. And then then we will sort of go through the, the criteria of what makes a property good. If it’s close to um, uh, transport station. Obviously a lot of the people that live in these houses are wheelchair bound, so it just needs to be, uh, in the right location so they can have a quality, like a good lifestyle, I guess. And, and convenience.

Ben Handler:

Where do you think the gap is? I mean in terms of like, do you think being that group like you are, who can say this is the right care provider, this is where we should buy. Like e.g., we should go to Queensland. This is the right product. Like do you think it’s, do you think there’s a gap or there’s a need to find someone like yourself to help package it all up?

Anthony Spagnolo:

Oh definitely. Cause if it’s a normal person just goes out to put a bought or build SDI house hoping that they’ll get high returns and haven’t done their due diligence in groundwork, the house can be empty log. There’s no point just building it for the sake of building it I guess. Uh, um, like I said by, by going through the process and reverse engineering it, we’ve gone all the way back to what the participants require with houses. So we’ve actually surveyed a lot of participants and just through our work with the care providers, with our builders that are preferred builders, we come up, we have come up with some really good designs that make the house has, is really functional for the needs of the participants. And then we also have those intimate relationships with the care providers on an ongoing basis to know where we should be sourcing. Then knowing that we’ll have investors come to us. And so we sort of reverse the process of working out what the requirements are of the people that are moving into the houses and where they’re located. And then we’ll match them with the investors and our developers and builders to like one stop solution.

Ben Handler:

And it’s a big, it’s a big space to be operating in and there’s massive obviously shortage of supply. High demand. Why would someone, okay, then the net yields, you said between 10 and 20%. It’s very high.

Anthony Spagnolo:

Yeah. In some cases it can vary from it depending on local does the land components, uh, the major variable factor. So the rates that the SDI pay, you only change by location. Very minimally. So it’s more so if you want to go close to a CBD, then the land component is going to be higher. Then you may be affected, however you might get a higher capital growth.

Ben Handler:
But the yields are very attractive?

Anthony Spagnolo:

That’s what they’re very attractive. But for me personally, like as, as I mentioned, it’s more of the feelgood factor of helping people get the right housing and it’s a social scheme. It’s the second biggest social scheme only behind Medicare.

Ben Handler:

It’s interesting because let’s just say I’m an I, I’m an investor. What do you feel like most investors would be looking at this? Obviously there’s, there’s very intent behind it. You’re, you know, it’s not just a standard purchase you’re providing and giving someone a place to be, but obviously the yields are attractive.  What else would be attractive for an investor is a capital growth. Like what…

Anthony Spagnolo:

If we can purchase in the right locations, which we like, we know where like even like you mentioned, we do a lot of work in Southeast Queensland. We know those suburbs like intimately and we know where we should be purchasing and we’ve got projections on growth and whatnot. So we’re able to definitely as well as getting the high, high, um, cashflow or, or yields, we’re able to get capital growth for our clients too. So that’s great. Yeah. Without some level of risks. Like, obviously the rewards high, but um, at present, yeah, the lending criteria is, uh, you need a little bit more deposit to get into one of these properties because, uh, they’re cause they’re fitted out to such a high standard. There’s a short sometimes in vows for the fit out costs. But that’s just a thought. I’ll put that out there.

Ben Handler:

What would you say the average average purchase prices waste from all we’ve been purchasing on behalf of our clients?

Anthony Spagnolo:

Look, we for say a four bedroom or, or could be a three bedroom with a Oh eight quarters, which is, uh, for an overnight carer, um, the standard builds around 500,000 or thereabouts. That’s, so that’s essentially a four bedroom SDA home. But as you go down, you can get three bedroom, two bedrooms, so you can, the price range would be, would probably start at five 50 to 600 K in Queensland to probably up to a million probably. But it’s high. I mean, I’ve seen some of the specs and what it looks like. It’s, it looks very good quality or very high quality or, or bath or bedrooms have large bathrooms. But for wheelchair access, uh, there’s a breakout area for when participants have their families over kitchen shared living. So they’re, they’re really well thought designs and they do provide a great level of comfort and livability for the participants.

Ben Handler:

What’s your view on, I mean at the moment with what’s going on with the, the economy at the moment? This pandemic tenant security is obviously an issue in just not just rezzy commercial everywhere. Have you seen a change in like investors who are looking at NDI indice because obviously there’s going to be no issue with tenant security. Have you seen there’s been more people who want to get in or…

Anthony Spagnolo:

there is a lot I think as, as the people who come more aware of the scheme and what indices like it’s quite new to a lot of people. So there has been just general, uh, increase as we’ve sort of, um, began over 12 months ago. We’ve seen a steady increase of, uh, interest. However, w a S like a selling point that, uh, identified as being during coronavirus that there is government guarantees and the governments is essentially the government’s the one that will be paying you the rent on behalf of the participants. So you have a 10 plus five plus five lease, um, with the SDA. So tenant security and risk of not receiving rent isn’t a problem. So if anything, um, we’ve come up with a solution to overcome any objections due to the current market crosses. It’s very attractive. How has been the experience?

Ben Handler:

I mean you obviously, I know you’ve gone through and done quite a lot of purchases already. You’re very busy. How, I mean obviously I just wanted to get a check in, like how’s the experience been from finding the property for the your client?

Anthony Spagnolo:

Yeah, it’s been, it’s been a challenge local, low. As I mentioned, we’ve sort of gone through Oh 10, 15 different, uh, builders that we’ve interviewed and vetted and, and also service providers who, so you’ve got the care providers are, they’re the ones who look after the whole India’s plan for the participants. However, then you’ve got the service providers who are the ones, they’re essentially like a lock, the agent of the property, but on a high level because there’s a lot more compliance and reporting that needs to be done to the, with them to the SDA to maintain the compliance of the property.

Um, as well. They need those relationships with, um, the care providers on an ongoing basis to make sure that, um, the tenants are happy looked after and if there is, uh, an event that a tenant may be relocating or moving out, that they’ve got someone else lined up to, to fill that spot. And we ha we don’t have a high occupy, uh, if I can see rights, uh, on these properties. So the, in most cases they’re fully occupied majority of the time due to the fact that there’s not sufficient housing around for the participants at this stage.

Ben Handler:

Do you see the business going really heavily all in, into the San Diego, in gen Z into the induce phase? We’re not pigeonholed to induce I guess, but it is a niche that we’ve really, uh, we’d like to call ourselves specialist in and we’ve been, like I said, we’ve done a fair few transactions in this space.

Anthony Spagnolo:

So we are, we are really in, uh, enjoying the challenge and enjoying being like, um, we want to be someone that people will come to to come up with the solution. And we’re, we’re at the point where we’re confident that we’ve got multiple solutions available or, yeah, it’s so needed. I mean, it just seems like a space that if you’re trying to go through it yourself 7,000 provide, like it just seems like it’d be a nightmare. Yeah, it is. That’s why you need the right service provider to have those relationships in specific areas. Obviously you can’t deal with all of them and they’re spread out across Australia. However, it’s, uh, it’s having those solid relationships that we can confidently put our investors into these properties knowing that they’ll be looked off, look, looked after and going forward, that the properties will perform for them. And we think that without designs with future proofing the properties, uh, for the investors, so when more more properties come on the market and uh, and they catch up with the demands that our properties are still going to be the best properties that people want to live in.

Ben Handler:

Yeah. And it’s great that you, you’re reverse engineering the entire process. Is anyone else going about it that way?

Anthony Spagnolo:

Um, look we’ve met a lot of good people in this space and a lot of passionate people because everyone’s got a story. They know someone that’s affected or someone that needs the housing happy to help people. Even if they’re looking for housing and not an investor where we’ve got the right connections to point them in the right direction to be able to come up with whatever solution they may need. If it’s from a holistic approach of getting someone that specialized in actual the hope doing the whole plans, cause they can be quite complex. So we look, we’re happy to just help in any way we can. In this space. You’re primarily buying

Ben Handler:

Queensland. Do you see yourself going in any other state?

Anthony Spagnolo:

Obviously the land in Queensland has been cheaper than what new South Wales or Sydney has been. So that’s why the use can be higher. It’s just sort of where we started. However, we, we’ve got some partnerships now that in the next two, two months we should have some really good options available in Sydney or broader new South Wales, central coast, Hunter Valley. We’ve got, we’ve got things in the pipeline or other partnerships that we can sort of definitely facilitate for that.

Ben Handler:

Nice. And so how have you found on a different note like the buyer’s agent space, obviously you working in the accounting space for a long time, pretty different to the buyer’s agent space. Are you, are you enjoying the style of service model?

Anthony Spagnolo:

Oh yeah, very much so. I enjoyed it. Um, as uh, you mentioned I was doing a CA counting and then I went into property development. Uh, larger scale developments was sort of what my family business was. So that’s how I sort of got my builder’s license along the way. Cause I was project managing our jobs and said, well one of our come a build up. But that’s not the direction I sort of went. And, uh, what I was doing as an accountant and now as a licensed real estate agent is, uh, a little bit of a hype, uh, hybrid between sort of, like I said, it’s property stretched strategists and it’s not yet. It’s not just the South side of things. It’s all been able to have those partnerships in the background with brokers, solicitors, other accountants, um, and AIS, it’s just having multiple relationships and also a marketing team behind me, uh, and just working with clever people that can really, um, give a client a holistic view and a strategy to move forward as opposed to just purchasing a one property. We want to look further further than that and actually help them build a portfolio and wealth. So,

Ben Handler:

yeah, and that’s, that’s what I was saying at the beginning. I think what you bring to the table in terms of skill and knowledge is incredibly unique. And then focusing that into indice like w what’s the right product and what’s the right area to buy in. And so because you’ve got that building experience, you’ve got the development experience, you’ve got the accounting background. Like it’s a lot of value it brings to the client.

Anthony Spagnolo:

Yeah. Well when we build a property like it’s not just set and forget and move on like part of my services locked off for the client that throughout the project I will essentially be project managing from a building level. Even though there’s a, we’ve got our preferred builders and it’s, we know that it’s in trusted hands. A client wants to know throughout a 20 week build cycle. I guess a client still wants updates. They want to know where it’s at and, and we’ll be even on site having a look with the builder and just making sure, keeping track of it. I can show everything’s on track I guess.

Ben Handler:

I think it’s awesome. What you’re doing I think is incredibly unique. There’s, I think it’s, I, it’s obviously a very big space I think to play in and there doesn’t there done from what I’ve seen that doesn’t seem like there’s that holistic, uh, group out there that can provide, has got that hybrid model to really service the client. I’m so mad I can’t wait to see what you’re going to do in this space. It’s exciting. Where can, as we wrap up, where can people find you.

Anthony Spagnolo:

On my website, Agenzia.com.au or Anthony Spagnolo. Uh, that would be, I’m happy to talk to anyone anytime with numbers on there. Give me a call, drop me an email and just happy to help in any way possible.

Ben Handler:

I love it. My well done. I’m pumped to see what you’re going to do in the future in this space. I really am. So thanks for joining. I appreciate it. For sure. Cheers. Okay, so check out Anthony at Agenzia.com.au. If you want to learn more about this NDIS space, it’s a very unique space and Anthony has got all the skills and putting a lot of the time the energy has put in the effort to build relationships so people can really understand this space and not many people in my opinion, really intricately do. So reach out to Anthony if you have any questions, check him out. He’s really passionate about serving this space and so I’m really excited to see where it goes cause there’s such a lack of supply and I think a lack of a consolidated skillset to support this industry. So check them out. See you next week.

Please watch the full episode here:

Accounting, Building and Helping Clients

With a background as an accountant, understanding the numbers in a property deal was never a problem for Anthony Spagnolo.

However, it was a number of years after he started running the family accounting firm, that he realised that he wanted to pursue property as his full-time profession.

“My background was accounting, having a family accounting firm for 12 years, which I took over from my father.”

“My father was already an avid property investor and had a side property investment business as well.”

“We were doing all sorts of different property developments, residential units, land sub-divisions, commercial, industrial. A broad range of things that gave me a real insight from the DA approval process all the way through to completion.”

After leaving the accounting business, Anthony decided to take on property full time and also focused on building.

“Along the way I was project managing some jobs, I got my builder’s licence as well and I was also investing in our own projects.”

“I had around five years of experience doing my own developments outside the family group, which was mainly townhouses and duplexes Sydney-wide, which I was project managing.”

After building up the property side of his business, he started to run into issues with the number of projects he could handle and decided he needed to change things up.

“Around a year and a half ago I realised that I was getting limited with my buying capacity and the number of projects I could do at any one time. “

“I needed a new challenge and I missed working with clients from an accounting perspective so that’s where my property advisory business came about.”

With an extensive background in building and development, Anthony began focusing on new stock and identifying opportunities for clients that often come directly from developers. He also recognised that there was a whole in the market after working with a number of buyers agents in his previous business that didn’t add value to their clients.

As he was getting established as a buyers agent, Anthony discovered the BAI which helped him in a range of areas, particularly with sales and lead generation.

“I started things off with Ben last April and got my real estate licence mid last year. It was a bit of a learning experience all around especially with lead generation.”

“Ben focuses on having a process and a system and not coming from a sales background it took some real adjustments. Early on it was a hard slog, but in the last four or five months I’ve actually felt something shift, which is great.”

Even though Anthony had a background in property, there was still plenty to take away from the BAI program.

“I had already a bit of a real estate background to a certain extent in selling some of our own projects off the plan. However, Ben’s course was totally different because you have to sell a client on your value and why they should pay a fee to engage you and also to source that property.”

Going forward Anthony’s goal is to continue helping clients and grow his business.

“I want to see clients as repeat business going forward, helping them grow their portfolio.”

“It’s good to see other people being able to what we’ve done ourselves, as an investor. A lot of people come to you for advice and sometimes you take it for granted the knowledge that you have thorough experience and it’s good to help people that are starting and then educate them and move them on to bigger and better things.”

You Paint Your Picture

Buyer's Agent Kitty Parker on painting your own picture

Ben Handler:

Welcome to the buyer’s agent Institute show. The purpose of the show is to bring awareness to buyers agents to bring awareness around the career opportunities that the buyer’s agent sector is providing people to bring awareness around the value that buyers agents are providing, people who need help buying property. Our goal with the show is to strip back and dive into the remarkable stories and journeys of buyer’s agents who are paving the way forward in one of the fastest growing career sectors in real estate. Right now.

Our guest today is Kitty Parker from Kitty Mile. She is not your average buyer’s agent. She has a very broad range of skill and talent. She’s been involved in start-up businesses, one of the most recent ones where she grew a multi-national corporate start-up. She also has tertiary qualifications that is quite diverse, ranging from policy ranging from strategic management and psychology. She is a single mother and she brings a certain level of freshness, I believe, to the buyer’s agent space. She’s not just here to serve clients and buy property. She’s here. I feel to bring innovation into this sector. I’m really excited to introduce Kitty and dive into today. Welcome, Kitty.

Kitty Miles:

Thank you so much. I was so nice. I thought you said lovely to meet you. Thank you for having me here today.

Ben Handler:

Yeah, I really appreciate it. And I remember I saw you online last year, end of last year and I thought this lady is going to crush it. She’s bringing new energy into these games.

Kitty Miles:

Thank you. I do my best. Yes.

Ben Handler:

Kitty Miles. So, it’s Kitty Parker. Kitty is for Katherine for short?

Kitty Miles:

No, my first name is Kristine-Elizabeth, hyphenated, which is ridiculous. And I have a middle name as well. So I’ve been called Kitty for ages because Kristine-Elizabeth is way too long.

Ben Handler:

The name of the business. What’s the Miles?

Kitty Miles:

Miles is my youngest son, so he’s 20. And there was a bit of a story behind miles, but um, yeah, naming the company after my son is really that mother and son connection, which I guess flows through with being a single mum, et cetera. And it’s uh, I guess providing a bit of a stance there out there as this is mom and son corporation.

Ben Handler:

You seem like you’ve entered this space with what? I can see a different purpose. And I say that because I appreciate that you’ve got different skills, you’ve got different talents and you’re now, from what I’m seeing, integrating it now into the buyer’s agent arena. What did you find and what did you see when you entered this space even before you started? What did you see?

Kitty Miles:

I guess as a starting point, being a single mom living in Sydney, in the rental market, you really get a feel for how unaffordable housing is. So that was the catalyst for me, maneuvering from my university qualifications and going down that path and thinking I really need to come up with a game plan here to set up the future financial security for my family. That allowed me to diverge into business. It was a real, um, survival instinct. And so I took that plunge into business, realized I had a passion for that. I had a skill at that, let’s just say, nailed that. So that gave me, um, the ability to begin, like to dive into having a investment property portfolio. So it gave me the funds to buy property while I was buying property. However, I engaged buyers, agents myself cause I was very time poor as a business woman.

And while their service was good, there were a few shortcomings. Let’s just say the buyer’s agents that I dealt with, there were some shortcomings. So at the wrapping this all up in the summary version is it all culminated in me selling my last business and going, you know what? I understand property now I know what people want from customer service. Having dealt with buyer’s agents myself and realizing, gee, I wish I’d done this or that. So now I try and give to my clients what I wanted given to myself. I also learned along the way obviously stumbling through buying property for myself and utilizing buyer’s agents. I came to understand the property market more and more. Having a background in data and statistics, I realized that, you know, crunching numbers and the property marker was like, I’m an untapped passion. So that was great and it all just culminated into me realizing this is a really natural progression for me. It really allows me to bring all my skills together and deliver for people in a way that I guess my psychology degree is about serving people. So this is like another version of that.

Ben Handler:

Yeah, and I respect that. I had seen that you’ve just got such a diverse level I think of skill and talent and the way that you integrate it into this particular service. It fits really well. Like the psychology we’re dealing with people. It’s communication. You’ve got a lot of experience with data and obviously business skills, which helps you I guess build the foundations of this new business. So this new business, it’s based head office in Sydney. Your you’re serving clients on a national level, correct?

Kitty Miles:

That’s correct. I’m based in Sydney but I service not just Sydney and the New South Wales state. I’m actually licensed in multiple States, so I purchase for people across multiple States of Australia. So this means it’s more often the case that people that are wanting to purchase investment properties interstate say they may already have a Sydney based investment property and they’re wanting to diversify their portfolio. Having someone they can meet in Sydney and chat to and having someone that understands the interstate markets individually. I find clients that they seem that they see that is very helpful. So yes, I serve as Sydney, New South Wales and interstate.

Ben Handler:

It’s awesome. Your business. Um, we had an earlier conversation. You started in end of 2018 and it’s grown very quickly. I mean, I’m not surprised. Did you, entering into this space, obviously it’s very niche. Did you expect it to move so quick? Like did you have expectations or..

Kitty Miles:

I certainly didn’t have expectations. Snowballing skyrocket as much as it has done. I’m very thankful and feel very blessed that it has done so exceptionally well when I’ve reviewed that and gone, gee, I’ve done so well in such a short period of time. I guess for me, honestly that boils down to, I think it’s the level of personalized customer service and customer care that I deliver. Um, and as I say, I learned that myself based on what I had hoped to receive from buyer’s agents. So I think that’s very much the catalyst as to why my business has done well. It’s what I do and the extent that I go to for my clients. I think it also is in the, in a humble way, my data analysis capabilities and I’m that I’m very passionate about statistics and data. Um, so my ability to interpret property market data is in the nicest way, I guess advanced. So I think the combination of being able to forecast well, uh, accurately appraise properties as well as just deliver a really down to earth caring customer experience. I think I was together have been the kind of secret ingredient in the source, so to speak.

Ben Handler:

Client experience. So you clearly delivering which should be the normal, like a first class style of experience. It seems like you’re connecting with them and you’re, you’re taking it to a new level, which I think, I mean you’ve got an American accent, so you’re Australian, right? You lived in the US I mean with my minimal experience in the US I always feel like they understand service more than Australia. So it seems like in Australia when you offer good services like Oh, but it should be part of the norm. Like what is it with your clients? Is it just your, you’re communicating daily? Like what is it you feel like that you’re doing, which is really I guess enhancing that overall experience.

Kitty Miles:

I think you’re very correct in pointing out that I would say I have a very American customer service style that it’s from the point of initially, um, chatting with a potential client, right through to the little detail, the attention to detail in answering all their questions are pre-empting their questions. Really trying to know when to assist a client at making an efficient decision and when to pull back and actually knowing someone needs a little bit more support or a little bit more time to think about things. And I think I’m very honest. So if I feel someone maybe taking longer to make a decision or, or making a decision based on emotion when it, when it should probably be more financially based, I’ll really politely call them on it and I’ll say, Hey, let’s just open up this conversation. And, and let’s discuss this or this or this.

And sometimes clients, I find they’re just so appreciative that you’re really actively listening and working with them. It’s not a cookie cutter model that you’re really looking at that person as an individual and looking at their brief, looking at their needs and also looking at their psychological reasons behind buying property. There have been so many clients, not so many, but I should say a handful of clients that I’ve halfway through went hang on a minute, time out. Do you really even want to buy a property? And they’ve gone what? And I’m like, why do you want to buy a property? And they’ve gone, well we should. That’s what we do. We’re married, we should. And I’m like, hang on a minute. And we’ve discussed it and they’ve actually walked away and gone. That is so refreshing. Yeah, we don’t want to buy a property. We want to rent. And I think that’s the difference that you really need to know your client and really work with their best interests at heart.

Ben Handler:

I love that. I haven’t heard that one before. And you, you don’t strike me as the salesy type more the consultative as you said, the listening, you got two ears and you, you’re there, you’re operating with integrity. And I think that’s quite rare in Australia for real estate and unfortunately there’s parts of the real estate arena which has a bad reputation. Um, and obviously your clients admire that and it’s, it’s obviously a Testament to the way your business has grown because you’ve grown a multiple six figure business in a very short period of time. I’m curious to know what do you see, just with your, with your lens at the moment, what are the opportunities in the buyer’s agent space that you’re seeing?

Kitty Miles:

There are huge opportunities in the buyer’s agent space. I feel one of my, one of my mission statements, so my business is I really want to change the way in which people buy property. And I think there is great potential in the buyer’s agent space and I think it is a really fantastic arena for people that come from other careers, either corporate careers or just other careers and that they can bring that knowledge and that information. And, and the gifts from, from many years in another career into this space. And I really think that that counts for a lot in this arena because you’re not just dealing with property, you’re dealing with people, you’re dealing with their wants, their needs, their desires, and having someone with a well rounded background, I just feel it fits in with that equation so well gone are the days where you need to have 30 years experience in the real estate industry to understand real estate. I feel that you can bring a really fresh and innovative energy approach and skills to this space. Having come from a different career, not saying experience is nothing, but I just think we can actually look at it differently and enhance on the buyer’s agent space that we have now.

Ben  Handler:

Music to my ears and I, and I think the innovation and the change that this space is gonna have over the next number of years moving forward is going to be from people like yourself who’ve worked in different sectors, have a different brain, have a different approach, different freshness. They’re going to help change this industry. It’s not going to be the people who just know how to buy property. That’s not, that’s not difficult. The difficult part I think is the business aspect and we’re gonna need more people who’ve done different things in different areas of business to come into this space and serve at a different level.

Kitty Miles:

I agree. I absolutely agree.

Ben Handler:

Talk to me around where is the next move for kitty miles? Like are you planning on just staying where you are at the moment? Are you looking to expand? Like what’s on the agenda for you…

 

Kitty Miles:

At the moment, I’m looking to scale my business. It’s done very well in a short space of time. I would love to scale my business to provide further reach for the service, assist more people because as one person I can assist this many people, but what I’m really hoping to achieve is that synergy between scaling and also keeping the boutique nature of my business. I don’t want to become factory line. I don’t want to become cookie cutter and I don’t want to sell out by scaling too quickly, too fast, to too much, and actually lose the touch that I feel. I bring my business that has made my business so successful. But my plan is to scale. Um, I’m also writing a book at the moment, uh, on property because I really, I’m a little bit over the myth that millennials can’t get into the property market. Um, I assist a lot of millennials, not just to get into the property market, but to actually believe they can even get into the property market because media seems to tell them that they’re going to have to give up their Avro smash if they have any hope of getting into property.

And I’m like, no, you can keep your avo smashed and we can get you into property as well. So I decided, you know, I want to open up this space. I want to write a book to help the particular demographics that I feel real estate just, you know, brushes onto the carpet. People like millennials, people like single moms, people like the LGBTQ community. They’re the buyers in the space at the moment. I’m not your typical mom and dad buyers. There’s so many more people buying property and I really want to do something to help these people get into the market, feel confident in the market and know what they’re doing. So ultimately it boils down to I really want to help create in property wealth, creation for all rather, than it just be kind of a minority that do well through greed per se. I want everyone to be able to own property.

Ben Handler:

I love how there’s, there is a focus on the millennials because there is, I think there’s limitation for millennials who are growing up who were looking at the paper, who were thinking, I can’t get into this market because the media is creating a narrative, creating a lot of fear and it’s amazing that you’ve got clients in that space or you’re servicing because they really do need help. A lot of them have never bought property before and there’s so much fear within them that there’s probably a high probability they’re going to make the wrong decision anyway.

Ben Handler:

Thank you. Yes, but spot on. Couldn’t agree more. I think that you know, there are so many millennials now that have the income to get into the property arena, but they just don’t have the confidence. What? I don’t know where to start and when you have the media constantly saying you can’t do it, you’ve missed the boat. It’s not actually building the confidence in them to feel that, Hey, I can do something and if I can have a conversation with someone and they get sparked off and go, really, I can get into property. To me, you know, more people need to know. It’s more millennials need to know this. The number of people that I’ve just started their journey and the number of millennials, I’ve started their journey into the property market and this is helping set them up for life and especially where we are at the moment.

Um in the property market with the whole covert 19 I’ve been really going, come on, the market’s a buyer’s market, let’s roll up our sleeves. I’m really get you into the market. There are so many different methods to get. The property market doesn’t just have to be by your home in Sydney. There are so many untapped methods that a lot of these millennials aren’t aware of. So my book I guess is to help them, you know, feel more confident and also give us some tips of where to look and, and how to, you know, jump in.

Ben Handler:

That’s exciting. When’s that coming out?

Kitty Miles:

November this year. So I’m finishing writing away, but yeah, it should be a pre-Christmas release. So a good one for the Christmas.

Ben Handler:

Okay, nice. Well, I want to talk about females and specifically regarding the buyer’s agent space. I’m a firm believer just with my experience in this sector that I feel like the Buyer’s Agents space is more, I actually think it’s more tailored towards females. The real estate side on the sell-side. Never been a real estate agent, but I feel like that’s a very alpha male. Um, I think it’d be quite tough for women is my ex, just from my perspective. But I genuinely believe that it’s more, I think it’s more tailored to females is my honest opinion. So I love seeing people like you coming into this space, creating waves with passion, with vision, with purpose, with intent. I love it. So what’s been your experience jumping into this niche as a female, as an entrepreneur and then dealing with real estate agents running around? What have you noticed? I’m just curious.

Kitty Miles:

I do feel that generally speaking, the real estate industry is a very alpha male industry. Um, kudos to all the women in this industry that have battled, you know, to, um, find fighting for themselves. So yes, I agree with that. Uh, it has had its tough moments. It’s, um, but I’m on a mission. Um, I’m pretty unstoppable, so they can give me all they want and I’m not going to stop. Um, but I also second to that, I absolutely agree that I think the buyer’s agents space is so about understanding clients needs in more than just what property they want. It’s understanding their fears, understanding their motivations, having empathy for their particular situations and being, having uh, emotional and social intelligence, being able to read the cues from people. And I don’t want to gender stereotype, but I’m going to, I do feel naturally often women and more adept at the emotional aspect.

And I feel that in a buyer’s agent space that that fit is just so good. That’s not to say that men can’t bring something fantastic should the table. I feel the men that do really well in the buyer’s agent space are really in tune with skills such as empathy and have a high level of emotional intelligence. And I feel they bring that and that’s of great virtue as well. But generally speaking, I feel more women definitely should get into this space. It’s a great career for single moms. It’s a great career for moms that may have had a corporate role, but have taken time off to have children or that, and they want to get back to work. But once something that will fit with their lifestyles. There are so many reasons why this space just fits well for, for women that want a balanced life.

Ben Handler:

Yeah. I couldn’t agree more about it. Talking about the empathy and the, the EQ and I so agree with that. Like when we sit in front of clients as buyer’s agents, it’s, you’ve got to connect and really understand the the person and I think if you’re there if you’re just there for the sale and you’re there just to, um, you’re there at a surface level, you’re not going to cut through. And I feel like this is a particular role where you really need to understand human beings and like you said, if you feel like the client is not ready to buy, even after you’ve engaged with them, you have that level of intelligence and EQ and everything just actually call it out. And it’s interesting to see where this space is going to go with the buyer’s agent space. I do hope more women into this space.

Kitty Miles:

I do as well. Absolutely.

Ben Handler:

I want to just revert back a bit in terms of bringing in the business experience into this. I’m a, I mean I’m a, I started in the buyer’s agent space where you one would say, if you looked at my scorecard, you’d be like, man, this dude hasn’t, he may, he may not get, he may not get through this. I didn’t have sales experience. I hadn’t run a business and I hadn’t worked in a traditional real estate company. Okay. And so one might look at me and think, well, how’s this guy gonna succeed? He hadn’t worked out. He hasn’t worked as a buyer’s agent. He’s never worked in sales. You’ve never run a business. And what I’ve learned along my journey is that being a buyer’s agent, not just about buying property, it’s not just about buying property. You need to understand human beings. You need to have systems and processes. You need to learn how to work with clients by how to deliver that incredible experience where they refer to you. Um, how to scale if you want to scale there. There are so many elements to it. And I feel like from what I see and what I hear and just what that there’s not a whole, I think a greater appreciation for that in our sector. I just want to get your view.

Kitty Miles:

Yep. Spot on. Absolutely agree. Ben. I feel like we’re on the same page. I absolutely agree. When you really think about it, someone buying a property, whether it’s their first home, whether it’s an investment property, whether it’s their 10th property, they’re putting into that property purchase a huge amount of funds and when you put, when you actually connect the people with that, with the person, with that process and you think they’ve worked hard to make this money, they’ve sacrificed to do this. When you really think of what the lead up is to someone coming to you, looking to buy a property, there are so many emotions wrapped up and there are so many stories wrapped up behind all that. It’s not just about a property. As I say, it’s the fears, the motivations, the history that the experiences behind that and that you so need to build trust with your client.

And it’s not just the trust that you can buy them a property. It’s not that it’s the trust that you have their best interests at heart. It’s the trust that you can call them out if you, if you feel you need to, that you have that trust where the person will listen to your expertise and that you can go, I don’t think this is a winner. I don’t think we shouldn’t, you know, buy this. And it’s very much, it’s trusting to me it really boils down to trust and it’s relationship building and we can even take the property, you know, out of the equation it boils down to it’s a big-ticket purchase. Probably the most money people will spend in their life and they want to know that they can trust you. And I think that that’s the key to differentiating an average buyer’s agent, an average person in the real estate space and someone that is really good at what they do. It’s less about the experience, less about, you know, time in the industry. You know, you’re the, you’re the marker of that and it’s what you bring to that relationship.

Ben Handler:

We’ll probably have to do another session cause there’s so much to talk about before we wrap up. Where can people, where’s the best place for people to find you?

Kitty Miles:

People can find me either on LinkedIn, Kitty Parker, uh, my website, kittyandmiles.com.au. I also have Instagram, Kitty & Miles, uh, Facebook, Kitty & Miles, any of the above. But in all of these, uh, social media outlets, you’ll really get a feel for what I’m about. Cause it’s not just about the buyer’s agent and property stuff. I really give a lot of tips, advice, and very much me. I share a lot of me there.

Ben Handler:

Good on you. I mean, I’m inspired to see your journey. I always get inspired seeing single mothers get out there and kick ass. I love it. I love the energy you’re bringing to this sector and I’m going to be watching you.

Kitty Miles:

Thank, Ben. Thank you for having me today.

Ben Handler:

Appreciate, appreciate it. Okay. That was an awesome, awesome discussion. I’m, I’m super excited to see the future of our Kitty and Miles is going to do. I really feel like you should and really should be watching Kitty Parker and her business, because I do think she’s a definite standout in this space with what she brings to the table, I feel is very, very unique. So if you’re out there and you’re looking to buy property on a national level, you’re looking for a data nerd. You’re looking for incredible customer experience. Reach out to Kitty. See you next week.

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