Friday, September 28, 2007

Tips on how to maximise your valuation

Tips on how to maximise your valuation If you’re looking to re-finance on your existing property to invest, you’ll need to obtain a valuation from a licensed valuer. Obviously the chances of a favourable valuation come down to your choice of property in the first place and what the market is doing at the time. However there are a number of things you can do to make sure you pull off the best valuation possible on the day.

1. Presentation
Make sure the gardens are looking nice and the house is de-cluttered. First impressions do count, even with property valuers so prepare your home as you would if you were holding an open for inspection.

2. Recent sales evidence
The easiest way to keep tabs on sales in your area is to attend open inspections nearby. Whether it’s an auction or a private sale, hold on to the brochure when you attend the open home so that your valuer will be able to track down the agent to confirm the selling price.

3. Be honest
Don’t exaggerate sale prices in the area, costs of renovations, etc.  Valuers are experienced, professional people who will in most cases be able to see through this.

4. Make your improvements prior & keep a record of them
If you have improvements to make, do them before the valuer comes around, as they have to value the property as they find it on that day. A tip: A well presented bathroom & kitchen which isn’t dated will have a positive impact. If improvements have been made to the property recently, provide a detailed list of works conducted and the cost of these. Supplying project specs and a building contract would give the valuer an idea of exactly what has been spent. Bear in mind that cost does not equal value in all instances.

5. Don’t overcapitalise
Do not spend more on a particular improvement than that particular area can cope with. Putting on a large extension will obviously increase the value of the property but it may not increase the value more than what it actually cost. That’s generally dependant on the quality of the area.

6. Outdoor living areas
Outdoor living areas are one thing which can add more value than cost. So, aim for a well presented and functional outdoor area as it generally reflects well on a valuation.

7. Be patient
Lastly don’t ask the valuer what they think it’s worth just as they’re leaving.  After visiting the property the valuer needs to go away and complete their analysis.
Karen Raffen, CEO <>

© Toop Real Estate Group

Monday, September 24, 2007

Just .toop it continues to grow!

Just .toop it continues to grow! At Toop&Toop we’re driven by innovation and technology. We love tapping into the unlimited boundaries of these resources and in doing so providing our clients with new and efficient portals through which they can sell or buy properties with our company.

By now you are probably aware of how “just .toop it” works, with every home having it’s own home on the web. Well, it doesn’t stop here, we are continuing to develop this phenomenon and are so excited about what we are able to provide to you – our clients.

Here’s just a few of the new .toop it additions…

Not only can you now locate a property by suburb or specific street address eg. you can also narrow the field by criteria!

This means if you want a home with a tennis court, it’s easy If you’re after a place with a pool, or even if you’re specifically after a unit then  

But wait, there’s more! If you want to invest in a property and are sick of wading through everything on the market in order to find the ideal investment then here is the ideal short cut just for you…

We’re also introducing initiatives to enable us to easily communicate with our overseas clientele. Not only is our website now incredibly user friendly to all of our English speaking clients we’ve incorporated translation pages in order to make purchasing a home easier for our clients of other nationalities.

How does this work? Well, at the top of a lot of our web pages you will notice 5 flags which represent different languages – Chinese, French, German, Japanese  & Spanish. By clicking on one of these flags, the page you are currently on will be translated into that particular language. Cool hey? We’re continuing to further develop our site with this bilingual technology.

Stay tuned as we have more exciting developments on the way including the ramping up of ‘Toop Home Videos’ on our site for each property on the market!

If you have any queries on how Just .toop it works feel free to contact, call any of our offices, drop in and collect a Just .toop it booklet or collect one from a sales partner at any open inspection.

Anthony Toop, Managing Director <>

© Toop Real Estate Group

Empty Holiday Home?

Empty Holiday Home? The good old Australian beach shack is a great piece of real estate to own…as long as you have time to sit back and enjoy it! With today’s fast paced lifestyles – sometimes finding that precious holiday time isn’t easy.

Picture this situation… When the family was younger you spent summer & school holidays at your beachside home, usually with a number of extra friends in tow. Now with the family a little older and all doing their own thing, you only really use it for a few weeks each year. Does this sound like you or someone you know?  Well do we have a solution, or two, for you!

Option #1
It’s time you did some renovations on your current home. New Kitchen and bathroom perhaps – or why not bring a bit of the beachside into your own backyard and put in a swimming pool? This would be easily affordable if you ‘cashed up’ and sold that shack that you never spend any time at! Think of all the savings - no extra council, water or power rates to pay, not to mention the continual maintenance. Ok, so you wouldn’t own your own holiday getaway – but remember there’s always the option of a holiday letting to get you away from the hustle and bustle of life, which brings me to…

Option #2
Can’t bear to think of parting with your favourite family beachside home? Well, why not keep it and cover your costs at the same time? Holiday lettings are a popular way to rent out your ‘home away from home’ during the times that you don’t want to use it yourself. Summer runs for quite a while, especially down on the Fleurieu, so enjoy a break during a few weeks of this piping hot season and lease it for the rest. You’ll well and truly cover your up-keep costs and someone else will also have the pleasure of enjoying such a lovely location.

The team down at our new Fleurieu office is ready and willing to help you out with either of these options.

Mark Richards, Mark Thwaites, Michele Phillis & Rob Heaslip are there to provide you with advice on the sale of your beachside property. While Kay Leopold, Nici Knott & Roanne Turner will be only too happy to assist you with any Holiday lettings.

So, if you’d like to have your shack work for you, drop in and see our team at 158 Hindmarsh Road, Victor Harbor or give them a call on 8555 8888.

Karen Raffen, CEO <>

© Toop Real Estate Group

Friday, September 07, 2007

Toops become part of the Fleurieu

Toops become part of the Fleurieu If you’re from the Fleurieu region, the Toop name will be well known to many of you and not through real esate. Toop Motors and the RAA in Victor Harbor have been around a lot longer than us!

Well we have decided to spread our wings a little bit further and open a new office at Victor Harbor. For Anthony & Sylvia there were both business and personal reasons for opening in Victor, including Anthony’s memories of spending time with his Grandparents and family as a child and the time spent in the old Toop Motors Garage.

We have committed to the region, purchased a beautiful building with a great history for our office and have a fantastic team on board to service the Fleurieu’s real estate clients in both sales and rentals.

Last Tuesday night, the 28th of August, we held the official opening of our brand new office on Hindmarsh Road, Victor Harbor. To help formalise the event the Hon Alexander Downer MP was there to mark the occasion, along with local identities and the Toop&Toop Fleurieu Team.

We are so excited to be launching into the Fleurieu region which is continuing to flourish. At Toop&Toop we believe in having ‘super’ offices – being fully resourced and covering a wide area, rather than little offices on every corner. So our new office encompasses the area from Myponga Beach through to Carrickalinga, across to Meadows down through to Clayton and, of course, back across to Goolwa and Hindmarsh Island. Our office may be in Victor Harbor but this region of service is why we’ve named it our ‘Fleurieu’ office.

So if you’re after advice on any properties, rentals or sales, throughout the Fleurieu region, give us a call on 8555 8888 or drop in and visit the Toop&Toop team at 158 Hindmarsh Road, Victor Harbor – they will try out their Barista skills for you on our new coffee machine and will be only too happy to help with your enquiry.

Karen Raffen, CEO <>
© Toop Real Estate Group

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Flying the auctioneering flag

Earlier in the year Toop&Toop’s Phil HarrisPhil Harris was named the winner of the 2007 Golden Gavel Awards.

He is heading off to Perth this weekend and flying the flag for SA in the Australasian Real Estate Institutes Auctioneering Championship. Currently positioned as the #2 auctioneer in Australia, Phil will be battling it out against the ‘best of the best’ auctioneers from around Australia and New Zealand.

As at last year’s Australasians in Auckland, Anthony will be supporting Phil throughout the competition in Perth.

This high profile event is a demanding two day long process. The auctioneers will be put under the spotlight during the heats on day one with four finalists being named to put their gavel to the test the following afternoon.

Phil, we are so proud of your auctioneering achievements and as you prepare for this highly contested event, we wish you the best of luck!

Karen Raffen, CEO <>

© Toop Real Estate Group