Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Everything has changed, yet nothing has changed.

PERSONALLY: On Tuesday (23rd) I returned to work after having been diagnosed with Oesophagus cancer on 8th May 2012. While my personal life was turned inside out, business just kept rolling on and all credit to an awesome group of people. I can say with credibility that "Team Toop" exceeded all my expectations and just kept doing their thing, and they didn't miss a beat.

Clients and competitors, your support has also been overwhelming over the past 5 months - a massive thank you. I could never have imagined competitors genuinely offering to do anything they could to help; you can imagine how uplifting that was when the chips were down! There are some amazing people in our community, and I have felt privileged to meet so many of you over the past few months.

To the hundreds of people, many I don't even know, your messages of support and encouragement made the dark moments brighter. Again, thank you.

BUSINESS: This experience has been quite an eye opener, both positive and negative. It sorts out loyal employees from the opportunists. I studied to be a CEO for 7 years with The Executive Connection (TEC) and they have a saying...employ "CHARACTER FIRST". The premise is that you can train a person but not change their character. They were right.

Actions, not words, determine the character of a person and culture of a team. I feel honoured on my return to be surrounded with loyal, passionate individuals who stood up to be counted when we needed them most.

Business is tough in real estate. The market is tight, but there are plenty of sales out there if you know what you are doing and are serious. Prices haven't capitulated, they have eased off, but volumes of sales have dropped significantly from the boom times.

Agents around Australia are going broke while others are doing fine. It's all about integrity, reputation and adaption to the new market conditions, our new normal. There is also plenty of real estate spin. One high profile national real estate trainer calls it "noise" - grand stories of success, yet little evidence of it. Fortunately these days it is easy to cut through all the "agent noise" by looking at the readily available market statistics.

Years ago, if you had the most listings advertised you were the most successful. In this market, it is no longer listings that separate the good from the ordinary, it is the settled sales. Settled sales have become the only accurate measure of success. Top agents rarely have the most listings because they sell them. Having the most houses for sale is easy - just accumulate them and let them sit on the market forever.

Toop&Toop are serious about results. In the boom a listed property was money in the bank, in this market listing properties for sale under any conditions is problematic and invariably compromises the final sale result. Failed marketing campaigns create lots of unhappiness but are becoming more prevalent.

Toop&Toop started our business in 1985. Our DNA is based on selling properties when others have failed...these current conditions highlight the benefits of innovation, technology and experience in data base marketing.

All agents are not the same, which is especially obvious under the current conditions. How the wheel turns! Some things never change.

Be sure to sign up to our weekly property market report. If you are selling, renting or doing anything in SA real estate this weekly show has all the latest news and views. Go to or and register.

Anthony Toop, Managing Director.
© Toop Real Estate Group

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