Thursday, June 27, 2013

Wow... a new “Leader”!

So much disruption in Canberra during the week... how is all this impacting on your house sales, if at all?

From the front lines, it is currently patchy. Winter is generally a time of low stock levels, solid sales results and frankly, a pretty safe time to
plan selling.

BUT... election time is negative time. Everything bad makes it to the front of the news and mud slinging and finger pointing has a consequential result on the psyche of the consumer in real estate.

Real estate is a big
ticket item; the most profound driver of the real estate market is CONFIDENCE! I’ve worked through some really tough markets with double digit interest rates, double digit unemployment rates - I have seen it all. If the consumer feels safe and secure, they will transact in real estate. If they are nervous, and feeling uneasy or vulnerable, they just put everything on hold.

Aside from the fact nearly all our sales team have recognised the opportunity to head off and recharge, ready for the second half of the year, the past couple of weeks have seen a sharp decrease in the level of activity.

New listings have slowed to a trickle; existing sellers have just pulled back a notch.
Incredibly, sales are still fine as there are plenty of buyers around, but getting a decision from them at the moment is taking longer.

From previous experience, it is likely to be fast and furious after the election... as the market plays catch up for lost time.

In the meantime, stay tuned for some remarkable new online innovations that our Toop&Toop IT guys are about to switch on...!

Anthony Toop

Find us on Facebook - Toop&Toop Real Estate

   Follow me on Twitter @Anthony_Toop

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Supporting local – What does it really mean to you?

Local businesses have never been more topical.  Trims, Spring Gully and now Holden are making headlines across Australia… So what is the future for our local businesses in Adelaide?

Well there are some obvious challenges, but despite this, we think the future is pretty bright!
There are many advantages that local independent companies have that the big multi-national franchise companies cannot offer. Independent businesses can generally move very quickly. They play to their own rules, live by their own values and can answer to their customers’ needs quicker than a large company.

At Toop&Toop we are an independent family owned business which we are very proud of... But what does that mean for our clients?

Everyone likes to support local; it feels good to know you are supporting Adelaide businesses. When the story about Spring Gully hit the media, I went out along with everyone else I know to stock up on their produce to show my support.

However the big difference for us at Toop&Toop is that property is not a small purchase. Selling your home is one of the most significant decisions a person makes, so there needs to be strong reasons why you would choose one agent over another.

One of the biggest advantages we have as a company, is that we are a large independent local business. We have six offices across SA with over 120 staff working together as one team. This is a very unique structure in real estate. You either see small independent agencies with one or two offices, or you see the other side of the scale - the large franchise agencies.

The problem we see with franchises is that although they have the same “umbrella” name and similar marketing look, each office works in isolation to each other.

Our observations are that businesses within a franchise are actually more competitive with each other than with anyone else, which may seem very odd to an outsider.

Having the structure that we do, means we get the best of both worlds. We have the economies of scale of a franchise agency which allows us to be very competitive on price. 

We buy well and pass on those savings to our clients.

However our independence means we move quickly, innovate and focus on our marketing to ensure we optimise our vendors’ sale and rental results.

The collaboration we have at Toop&Toop is unique in SA. It means that our clients benefit from not just one sales person, but essentially 40 agents from across the state working together for them, all connected live and interactively with our own Toop&Toop software.

We share everything at Toop&Toop; our team meets weekly to discuss our vendors’ properties, we share all our buyer information, allowing us to cross-sell Toop&Toop properties to interested buyers, all over the country (and the world). This collaboration is reflected in our incredible sales statistics and time on market sale results – Just ask our team about these!
We believe being an independent South Australian family business is not just marketing spin - it doesn’t just make you feel good. It is something we are very proud of and it is reflected in our values, our culture and ultimately, your results.

When it’s time to get serious, it's time to get Team Toop.

Genevieve Toop

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   Follow me on Twitter: @GenToop

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Your Getaway Home… now more affordable than ever!
Long weekends often pose a problem, not quite enough time for a decent interstate holiday, but long enough to want to make the most of that extra day.
I bit the bullet last weekend, flew to Sydney and spent the weekend in the Blue Mountains at a friend’s holiday house. Farmers markets, coffee shops and local restaurants created the perfect mix to ensure a relaxing weekend away. The Blue Mountains host a number of towns which are lined with quaint cottages and you’ll find a number of distinguished Sydney-siders’ homes scattered against the hillside.
To paint the entire picture of my weekend away, I need to mention that logistically it was a bit of a mission to get there. A weekend away appeared to be the norm, so in true Sydney-style, we faced bumper-to-bumper traffic and 3.5 hours later, we arrived in Blackheath. 
This got me thinking... in Adelaide we are very fortunate to have equally beautiful getaway locations at a fraction of the travel time. Peak hour lasts 30 minutes and the greatest escapes are 40-60 minutes away from the CBD. We have the Barossa Valley, McLaren Vale, Victor Harbor and Adelaide Hills right at our finger tips. There is great value in the Hills at the moment, with a number of beautiful homes being sold recently by Team Toop such as The White House and Birchwood in Aldgate. Likewise, across the Fleurieu there are some amazing beach houses on the market, and it’s no secret that house prices are down 10-15% from the peak. 
So what’s the future for these outer regions?
The Southern Expressway is undergoing major redevelopment. Whilst we are currently experiencing headaches from the $407.5million project, when completed in mid 2014 it will put Adelaide’s southern beaches and McLaren Vale in even easier reach from town. 

As a result, we expect prices across these regions to pick up. An increase in buyer enquiry has already commenced with our Fleurieu Team experiencing an 800% increase in enquiry across the region over the June long weekend! More realistic prices have been set and our team are expecting to generate considerable interest over the next 3-6 months. 
Purchasing your own getaway home is now more affordable than ever. With improvements to infrastructure well and truly underway, now is the time to act. Make the most of the current market and prepare for the next long weekend… October 7 is approaching fast!

Suzannah Toop, General Manager of Operations
© Toop Real Estate Group

Thursday, June 06, 2013

Love this place!

Love this place!

After almost 6 weeks away travelling some rather incredible "out of favour places" as well as the hip and happening capitals of fashion, food and wine...we have returned more worldly, more understanding of world conflict and definitely wiser.

So much to see, too much to learn. This trip made me very aware of just how little I know....OUCH!

Sylvia and I (along with some Adelaide mates) travelled by ship from Dubai to Rome via the Suez Canal stopping along the way and visiting many spots, including visiting Fujairah in U.A.E., Muscat & Salalah in Oman, Aquaba in Jordon, Luxor in Egypt, Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Nazareth and then into the Mediterranean. Once in Italy we toured the wine areas before heading to Como and finished off in Milan...

We were exhausted trying to take it all in. The Holy Trail in Israel was a stand out experience for us...

While the parents were discovering how little they understood of the MiddleEast and learning, the children (hardly children but holding onto that thought), were discovering what running a business was all about and learning the reality of running the business they have grown up around.

Full credit to Team Toop with both sales and rentals not missing a beat....(truth be known probably doing a better job than Sylvia and I in some ways). So a public thank you to our amazing Team Toop, to Genevieve and Suzannah, and to you, our customers for your ongoing loyalty and support for us, we REALLY appreciate it. I think I have lost my office too...the girls seemed to have settled in and don't look like moving anytime soon!

May sales were at near boom time levels and Toop&Toop is running hot at the moment...(in fact we have almost run out of houses to sell so call us!). The positive energy of Team Toop is a credit to THEM in these tough times. Well done.

Flying into Adelaide, after so many wonderful experiences (& 2000 photographs) and after seeing so many stunningly beautiful places, proudly South Australia is definitely OUR home.

We love this place.

Anthony Toop, Managing Director.
© Toop Real Estate Group