A new year opens up new opportunities. At the end of last year, the real estate industry saw a downturn, illustrating the importance of planning and knowing your position. Have you invested the time to set your goals for 2023? Do you have a clear understanding of what direction you want to take?

Discover expert business planning tips from Andrew Friebe, Founder and CEO of Re-Engage Consulting. Andrew is an experienced leader in the real estate industry with specialist skills in management, leadership, growth and extensive sales experience. In this on-demand webinar, Andrew discusses the 5 key areas that business owners and top agents need to focus on in order to achieve their goals, grow their business and boost revenue.

By watching, you will gain a deeper understanding of:

This on-demand webinar is perfect for top sales agents looking to launch your own business in 2023, and principals or business owners who want to learn how to grow your real estate business, revenue and profit.

*Please note that the Q&A included in this on-demand webinar is not functional for on-demand viewers.


Discover how Re-Engage Consulting can benefit your business.

Recently PropTech Group partnered with Andrew Friebe,  Founder and CEO of Re-Engage Consulting, to offer consulting services. Andrew has worked with hundreds of real estate agencies across Australia and New Zealand to help them to get the most out of their agency.

Want to learn more about our consultancy services? Please contact our team for more information.

With a lower volume of transactions and the general property market continuing to cool down compared to the heights of last year, now is the perfect time to take a closer look at your business expenses and find ways to cut your costs.

For real estate agents, there are a number of business expenses that are vital, not only to continue doing your job well, but to also save time which is equally important. The key to cost cutting is to first identify what your main costs are, and then try to improve or consolidate where you can or cut them out altogether.

Here are some key areas to focus on when cutting costs.

Evaluate your tech stack

There’s no doubt that technology has dramatically changed the game for most real estate agents over the past few decades. In todays market, technology tools can help make you more efficient as an agent, save you time and broaden your reach further than ever before.

In the PropTech era in which we find ourselves, new technology is evolving faster than ever before and new products are being released on a frequent basis. For agency's it’s important to continually assess the tools that you’re using to make sure you’re getting the most out of them and really maximising your technology stack.

The first step is to check that you’re not doubling up on technology. Many tools can do multiple functions and it’s important to make sure that you’re not paying for the same service twice.

Secondly, all of your systems should be well-integrated. You can easily pay for more tools than you might not otherwise need, simply because your current stack doesn’t integrate well. In many cases, you can find one great piece of software such as VaultRE, or Eagle Software, that can handle all of your needs at a more cost-effective price than paying for a number of different services that don't together in a cohesive way.

By selecting a comprehensive CRM as your starting point, you’ll have the benefit of saving time as you avoid integration issues and data loss across platforms. For a full guide on auditing your tech stack, check out our comprehensive article here.

Finally, you need to identify the best value for money. Oftentimes, platforms have different levels that will offer different features depending on your requirements. You might not need all the tools a platform has to offer, so you shouldn’t have to pay for them.

Utilise automation

Automation is one of the seven essential features of any real estate CRM.

If you can save time, you will save money. That applies to a range of different areas of your business, so you should always be on the lookout for more effective ways of doing things and ways you can automate tasks.

If there is the option of replacing a tedious task that is done by a human, with technology, then that is a great starting point to save significant costs and the hassles that go with hiring and managing employees. However, the real estate industry includes a number of roles that thrive with the human touch, so it then becomes important to create ways to help your employees to become more efficient in their day to day tasks.

Taking the time to plan ahead

If you’re trying to cut down on costs, nothing beats great planning. The better you plan your overall business from the top down, the more effective and cost-efficient you can be.

That starts with your overall business plan and goals, down to the way you plan your day. You should be regularly doing planning sessions where you set both high-level long-term goals and short-term goals and work out how you’re going to achieve them. Learn you can effectively plan ahead and create realistic goals for yourself and your agency by reading our recent planning article.

Detailed planning and strategising makes you more goal focussed and efficient as a business and in the process will save you and your business both time and money.

The rollercoaster ride for property has seen values fall 5.3% over the course of the year - marking the largest decline since 2008.

According to CoreLogic, prices across the country fell another 1.1% in December, which was slightly more than the prior month. Values dropped 1.4% in Sydney, 1.5% in Brisbane, 1.2% in Canberra and Melbourne, while Hobart recorded the sharpest decline of 1.9%. Only Perth recorded a slight gain of 0.1% for the month.

Index results as at 31 December, 2022

Source: CoreLogic

Annual falls were the most significant in Sydney (-12.1%) and Melbourne (-8.1%) where conditions peaked early in the year. Hobart (-6.9%), the ACT (-3.3%), and Brisbane (-1.1%) also recorded an annual drop in housing values, while Adelaide (10.1%), Darwin (4.3%) and Perth (3.6%) saw a slight increase in prices.

CoreLogic’s research director, Tim Lawless, said home prices were initially rising in 2022 before the RBA started raising interest rates.

“Our daily index series saw national home values peak on May 7, shortly after the cash rate moved off emergency lows,” Mr Lawless said. 

“Since then, CoreLogic’s national index has fallen 8.2%, following a dramatic 28.9% rise in values through the upswing.

“The more expensive end of the market tends to lead the cycles, both through the upswing and the downturn. Importantly, recent months have seen some cities recording less of a performance gap between the broad value-based cohorts. 

“Sydney is a good example, where upper quartile house values actually fell at a slower pace than values across the lower quartile and broad middle of the market through the final quarter of the year.”

While capital city markets have been experiencing sharp declines, regional values have remained relativity solid according to Mr Lawless, showing a 0.1% increase.

“Annual falls across Regional NSW (-2.7%) and Regional Victoria (-1.3%) offset annual gains across the remaining regional markets,” he said.

“Regional South Australia has been the stand out for growth conditions over the past year, with values up 17.1% through 2022.

“The well-known Barossa wine region led the capital gains with a 23.0% rise in values over the calendar year.”

Despite the slowdown in property prices, values still remain 11.7% higher than pre-COVID levels in the capital cities and 32.2% higher in regional Australia.

“Melbourne is the only capital city where the current downwards trend is getting close to wiping out the entirety of COVID gains, with dwelling values only 1.5% above March 2020 levels,” Mr Lawless said. 

“The relatively small difference between March 2020 and December 2022 levels can be attributed to a number of factors, including a larger drop in values during the early phase of COVID, a milder upswing through the growth cycle and the -8.3% drop since values peaked in February.” 

At the other end of the scale is Adelaide, where housing values remain 42.8% above pre-COVID levels. Adelaide dwelling values recorded a 44.7% gain through the upswing, and have held relatively firm since interest rates started to rise, down only -1.3% from the recent peak.

Tight supply continues

Across the country, levels of supply are still remaining low which is contributing to prices holding up relatively well.

Advertised supply levels ended 2022, 7.8% lower than last year and 19% below the previous five-year average. 

The lower than normal flow of fresh listings added to the market over the past few months has been a key factor keeping overall inventory levels low.

“The trend in housing inventory showed a conspicuous lack of seasonality through spring and the first month of summer, with advertised supply holding reasonably firm post-winter,” Mr Lawless said.

“Vendors have been reluctant to test the market through the downturn, with the number of new listings over the past four weeks almost -31% lower than a year ago when capital city homes were selling in around 20 days. 

“Today, the median time on market has increased to 31 days, leading to a blow out in vendor discounting rates from just 3.1% a year ago to 4.2% at the end of 2022.”


New and Total Listings, 28 Day Count for Combined Capitals

Source: CoreLogic

Rents keep on rising

National rents increased a further 0.6% in December to be 2.0% higher through the December quarter and up 10.2% over the calendar year. Rents rose across every region and housing type across the country over the past year, ranging from a 4.0% rise in house rents across the ACT to a 15.5% increase in Sydney unit rents. 

“As renters face worsening affordability pressures, it’s logical to expect more rental demand to transition towards higher density options, where rents are generally more affordable, or for rental households to maximise the number of tenants in a rental dwelling,” Mr Lawless said.

Looking forward

Mr Lawless said he expects house prices to continue to decline in early 2023 as the RBA pushes forward with further interest rate hikes, before starting to stabilise later in the year.

“Interest rates, or more specifically, mortgage rates, will be one of the main factors influencing housing market outcomes,” he said.

“The timing and magnitude of a peak in the cash rate remains highly uncertain, however at least one more 25 basis point lift seems all but certain.”

The other key concern in 2023 remains the fixed rate mortgage cliff that will see a large portion of borrowers with fixed rate loans rolling off to higher variable rates.

“As progressively more fixed rate borrowers become exposed to higher mortgage repayments, alongside variable rate borrowers, it is reasonable to expect mortgage arrears will gradually trend higher, albeit from record lows in 2022,” Mr Lawless said.

According to Mr Lawless, the next growth phase for property markets will need to be triggered by some type of catalyst.

“Historically, a new phase of growth in housing values has been associated with a catalyst or combination of stimulatory events such as falling interest rates, easing credit policies, or favourable government policy outcomes,” he said.

“Considering how important housing is to the household sector and broader economy, it’s possible any combination of these outcomes could come to fruition later in the year.”

As we settle into 2023, it’s vital that you act quickly and start thinking about the year, and look to find ways that you and your business can continue to improve.

Here are four things you should be doing to better prepare for the new year and set yourself up for success.

Review the past year

You’re not going to be able to improve unless you take the time to understand your past efforts. At the turn of the new year, one of the most important tasks you can do as a real estate agent or business owner is to review your year and analyse the areas that went well, but also the areas that need improvement.

A great start is to begin looking at where most of your leads are coming from, and then look to find ways to do more of those activities. You can also review how your team has performed, how efficiently your time has been spent, and also if your technology tools have been making your life and business better.

If you don’t have good data on things like your source of leads or where your time is going, you know that your first job this year is to start tracking these metrics so you can have a baseline to work with and improve upon.

Set goals

You’re going to find it very difficult to continue to grow and succeed in business if you’re not setting goals. Goals give your business focus and direction and are crucial in measuring your success.

Start the year by sitting down with your team to discuss and start setting goals. Keep in mind that while it’s great to have big goals around profits and money, it’s more important to set progress goals that will guide you to your larger scale growth goals. 

You want to target things that are in your control so that you know if you achieve them, you will be well on your way to hitting your financial goals as well.

A great example would be how many prospecting phone calls you and your team make every week. You might know that if you make 100 calls per week, you will get 10 leads, which culminate in one listing. Use your analytical data to work backwards and try and hit your financial targets with process-driven goals.

Establish a routine

Most successful people are very stringent with their daily routines. They often do the exact same things every day at the same time which this allows them to be laser-focused in what they are doing.

If you haven’t established a routine for your week, then it’s likely that you’re losing a lot of time simply by lack of structure. Start now by planning out your calendar in advance and don’t forget to book in breaks and things like family time.

You can work backwards from your list of process goals to outline how many hours each week you need for various tasks that will allow you to maximise your time and grow your revenues.

Build processes

If you’re going to grow and reach the elite levels of real estate, you’re not going to be able to do it alone. The earlier you can build a team and incorporate technology into your business the faster you're going to be able to grow.

The first place to start is usually by adding well-integrated technology tools like a quality CRM that allows you to reach more people and maximise your time.

After that, it’s time to start thinking about adding team members. You can start with a virtual assistant and then look to expand with people who can help with the backend and admin worth, before trying to add more sales associates.

Your goal when building processes is to try to remove yourself from as much of the day-to-day work as you can. So you can put all your time and attention into the activities that generate the most revenue for your business.

The auction process is a fantastic way to sell property as it is both incredibly transparent and also allows for strong results from vendors.

As a real estate agent, it's important to understand how to get the most out of an auction campaign, and what some of the best tactics are.

Bring the bidders

In some ways, the main job of the real estate agent is to bring in as many potential bidders as you possibly can. For your vendor to get the very best result, you should be looking to have at least two active bidders so they can potentially drive the price higher. To do this, an agent must cast their net far and wise to attract as many people to the property as possible, in the hopes they'll be prepared to bid on auction day.

Whenever you are preparing to launch a new campaign, the first thing you should be looking to do is to bring in as many potential buyers as possible. Find people who have been to open homes who are looking for similar types of properties.

Use your CRM to automate emails and text messages, firstly to reach out to them to show them the property. Then continue to follow up with all the various people to keep them informed throughout the process, and don't forget to remind them about open homes and of course the say of the auction itself.

You can also utilise social media to create targeted ads. Products like PropTech Group's Social Eazie make this possible, and easy to set up, you can easily target potential buyers in your local area within minimal work.

Time and place

Well before you start the auction campaign, you should have a clear plan put in place that culminates with having the auction on the right day and at the right time as well as in the correct location.

While most auctions will occur at the property, it's important to work backwards to determine the right day, and even the best time of day. You can often consult with the auctioneer on this part of the process, as they will understand the market and also how the different time slots will suit your particular property.

Be an expert

As an agent, you should be an expert in the location where you're selling the property as part of your personal brand. You should understand the buyers and the sellers, and what they're both wanting at that point in time.

You should also understand what the current market is like and which side is more in control of the market. The more expertise you can bring, the better you can work for your vendor while also assisting buyers to make them as comfortable as possible. Expertise is also one of the key factors in building trust with clients. 

Remember that most people are first-time bidders at auction and this can be a very daunting process. Many may have never seen an auction take place, so be sure to help your buyers and give them the information the might need to move through the auction process.

Right auctioneer

It's important that you work with an experienced auctioneer who has a track record of getting strong results in your area. Auctioneers are masters at understanding the crows and how the auction is playing out.

They know how to adjust the bid increments and when, and they should also have the seller's best interest at heart. They can also be a valuable partner in planning out the action campaign.

Bring energy on the day

When auction day arrives, it's important that as an agent, you're bringing positivity and energy. An auction can take a life of its own and the day itself is usually filled with excitement and anticipation.

As the selling agent, this is exactly what you want. You want buyers to be excited and eager to place bids. The more hype you can generate around the property on the day, the better the result.

Discover what it takes to become a million dollar agent in today's real estate landscape in this on-demand webinar with presenter Sherrie Storor.

Sherrie is a razor-sharp coaching powerhouse and one of Australia’s most experienced and accomplished real estate experts and her mission is to change the face of the real estate industry. She believes that the right tools and systems can and will unleash potential.

By watching this on-demand webinar, you will learn:

*Please note that the poll included in this on-demand webinar is not functional for on-demand viewers.

Property prices across the country fell another 1.2% last month, marking six months of consecutive declines for homeowners.

This month it was Brisbane that experienced the largest decline, with values down 2%, followed by Sydney at 1.3% and Hobart with a 1.1% fall. Melbourne and Darwin both saw a fall of 0.8% while values in Canberra dropped 1%. Falls were less severe in Adelaide and Perth with just a 0.3% and 0.9% drop respectively.

CoreLogic's Research Director, Tim Lawless said it is probably still too early to claim the worst of the decline phase is over.

"Despite the easing in the pace of decline, with Australian borrowers facing the double whammy of further interest rate hikes along with persistently high and rising inflation, there is genuine risk we could see the rate of decline re-accelerate as interest rates rise further and household balance sheets become more thinly stretched," Mr Lawless.

"To date, the housing downturn has remained orderly, at least in the context of the significant upswing in values."

"This is supported by a below-average flow of new listings that is keeping overall inventory levels contained.

There's also tight labour market conditions, an accrual of borrower savings and a larger than normal cohort of fixed interest rate borrowers, who have so far been insulated from the rapid rise in interest rates."

Following a 25.5% rise through the recent upswing, housing values have fallen -6.5% across the major capital cities. Sydney home values are down -10.2% since peaking in January (after a 27.7% rise) and Melbourne values down -6.4% since February (after rising 17.3%).

House values have continued to fall at a faster rate than unit values across most regions with capital city house values down -1.2% in October compared with a -0.7% decline in unit values.

Mr Lawless said the smaller decline in values across the unit sector can be attributed to the more affordable price points across the medium to high density sector.

"The gap between median house and unit values increased to record levels through the COVID upswing," he said.

"With borrowing capacity being hit hard as interest rates rise, it's likely more housing demand has been diverted towards more affordable sectors of the market."

Change in dwellings - index results as at 31 October, 2022

Source: CoreLogic

Listings still tight

On the demand side, the estimated number of home sales has held reasonably firm through the first two months of spring. Capital city home sales were -16.6% lower than a year ago and 3.8% above the previous five-year average for this time of the year.

"The number of home sales is well down from the highs of late last year, however the fact that sales activity is still above the five-year average over the past three months reflects a base level of demand for housing," Mr Lawless said.

"Housing finance data shows subsequent buyers, such as upgraders, down sizers or movers, have been the most resilient sector of the market since interest rates started to rise.

"As interest rates rise further, it's likely sales activity will also trend lower as borrowing capacity is reduced."

The flow of new listings started to trend higher in October, but the traditional spring selling season remains well below levels at the same time last year and relative to the previous five-year average. Over the four weeks ending October 30th, the number of newly listed capital city dwellings was tracking -25.2% below a year ago and almost -19% below the previous five-year average. The trend in total advertised listings is holding relatively firm, tracking -5.0% below levels a year ago and -18.2% below the previous five-year average.

Rental growth slowing

Meanwhile, rental growth continues to slow down, with national rents rising another 0.6% in October, led by 1.1% rise in unit rents while house rents increased by 0.5%.

Mr Lawless said a gradual slowdown in rental growth in the face of low vacancy rates could be an early sign that renters are reaching an affordability ceiling.

"Since the onset of COVID, capital city rents have risen 17.7% and regional rents are up 25.5%" he said.

"Although rents are likely to continue to rise, it's likely renters will be progressively seeking rental options across the medium to high density sector, where renting is cheaper, or maximising the number of people in the tenancy in an effort to spread higher rental costs across a larger household."

Outlook remains soft

Mr Lawless said housing values are likely to continue trending lower until interest rates find a ceiling.

"The bad news for homeowners is most economists have recently revised their cash rate forecasts upwards due to higher than expected inflation outcomes," he said.

"Although housing risks remain skewed to the downside, there are a few tailwinds that should help to keep this downturn orderly and stave off a material rise in distressed listings.

Factors include tight inventory, strong employment and overseas migration, should limit any extreme falls in house prices.

As the property market begins to slow, building relationships and keeping your ‘finger on the pulse’ of market trends will be key to gaining client trust and driving business growth. 

While property technology and applications offer real estate agents and property professionals a treasure trove of insights, often time pressures limit how the technology is used, leading to real estate agents underutilising the data at their fingertips.

Here, we explore new ways property professionals can do more with data to benefit clients, sales, and business overall.

Break down silos

Grappling with multiple applications and CRM platforms to access useful data has long been a sore point for property professionals. It’s time to break down the silos and create solutions that give agents and property professionals the tools to seamlessly and strategically use data to create opportunities and drive growth.

A new partnership between Australian owned data provider, National Property Group and PropTech Group is taking data insights to the next level.

The integration will deliver National Property Group’s data services into PropTech Group’s CRMs Eagle Software and VaultRE, the websites provided by PropTech Group subsidiary Website Blue, and the vendor proposals created in PropTech Group’s Designly, giving real estate agents access to market data for vendor proposal creation, their sales and PM CRMs, and automatic valuation models – all with one log in.

Start meaningful conversations

With a focus on addressing the core business needs of real estate agents and property professionals, the new National Property Group and PropTech Group data integration simplifies the functions of ‘finding, listing, selling and nurturing’ into one application. 

Having access to a wealth of data insights in one application, that previously required one or more application logins, provides significant business benefits. Time efficiencies and productivity will be improved, proposals and AVMs will be presented with enhanced customer targeting and strategic insight, and customer conversations will be backed by meaningful, reliable data insights.

Identify Trends

Being able to identify data trends such as recent sales, tenure and hot spots within the CRM data creates better prospecting conversions. National Property Group’s heat map searches integrated directly into the VaultRE platform provides simple visual representations of where opportunities lie for real estate agents.

Use data strategically to deliver informed insights

When listing, property professionals build trust and confidence by having in-depth knowledge and understanding of current market conditions. Having detailed access within the VaultRE platform of property data and market activity, improves agent conversations by giving them the insights to react and answer any enquiries. Agents can generate key reports directly from VaultRE to improve the customer experience. Moving into ‘sell’ mode, the VaultRE and National Property Group integration is vital in communicating current market information that gives sellers and buyers confidence to make decisions. 

Take digital marketing to the next level

Real estate has long been a competitive industry. For National Property Group customers, the partnership with PropTech Group delivers a best-in-class experience for their digital marketing presence by providing a seamless update to “Website Blue” for all digital requirements, in addition to website management with the leading real estate web provider, and simple listing upload to key listing portal providers.

Leading real estate experts speak to ‘touch points’ in driving business success. There are the usual standard touch points such as email, text, and newsletter distribution etc, but the most important touch points are conversations that add value. To make customer conversations valuable they need to be relevant, local, and current. 

The advantage of the VaultRE and National Property Group integration is that VaultRE presents the customer who is due the touchpoint and National Property Group provides the rich information that adds value to the conversation. Utilising one platform, agents are empowered to serve and resend more information within the one platform rather than several, making it easy and consistent which improves productivity and ultimately leads to more listings and sales.

Reports for long-term success

Real estate is a long game and keeping track of reports over time can be difficult. National Property Group and PropTech Group’s integration helps solve reporting inefficiencies by seamlessly recording reports in an agent’s VaultRE file cabinet, ensuring consistent conversations over time that build trust.

Data used strategically and effectively can be the most valuable asset property professionals hold. For real estate agencies, accessing, deciphering and utilising data is the single most important function that will be the key to winning more business. 

Data in action – real world example

Let me give you a typical example: the agent is speaking with a client around the market, the client is not ready, but requests a report as an update. The agent obliges and jumps into their data platform, runs the report, and sends it as a PDF via an email. If we are lucky, they may record the interaction, but due time and other pressures they don’t, and so much valuable data is lost. 

Now let’s look at VaultRE and National Property Group integration scenario: the agent makes the call within VaultRE, the conversation results in a report request, they generate the report directly from VaultRE they send within the platform and all that golden information is captured - waiting to be used for the next touchpoint, improving customer experience, building trust so that they list with the agent.

For this reason, the National Property Group and PropTech Group integration project creates an environment that:


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Social Media & Google Advertising for Real Estate

Social Media is a key pillar when it comes to building success in the real estate landscape, yet it is often an afterthought for many. Take the opportunity to showcase your brand through social media, transforming your communication channels into lead generation tools.

Watch our on-demand webinar, lead by Peter Karanicolas, Head of Social Media for PropTech Group, and learn how to gain a deeper understanding of your brand, your audience, and your goals. You'll also get a sneak peek into PropTech Group's most recent offering, Social Eazie, a tool that allows you to enjoy the benefits of a well-structured social media plan with targeted advertising, without the time intensive investment.

By watching this insightful webinar, you'll learn:

Discover Propps, a simple, time-saving, cost-efficient and extremely effective way for agents to collect offers for your vendors, while creating a clear and consistent platform for buyers to make offers.

Watch our on-demand webinar where our presenters Daniel Bignold, Founder and CEO of Propps, and Luke Paverd, COO PropTech Group, will explore everything you need to know about how to optimise your results with Propps.

By watching this on-demand webinar, you will learn how to:


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