As a Director at Property Way, Julian is an expert on all things real estate. We had a chat about being a Buyer’s Agent, and the Melbourne property market.
Why did you get into property, and more specifically become a buyers agent?
I was always a keen investor and became a client of Property Way, which is how I got to know the team. Through my own experiences I felt as though there was (and still is) a real lack of genuine, ethical people and businesses in the property industry. I saw friends and family who had made poor investments, who had been ripped off or taken advantage of and knew I wanted to offer a client driven service in whatever industry I ended up in.
I began studying financial planning but when Property Way offered me a great opportunity, it was too good not to take.
What is a buyers agent? What services do you provide?
We are in the business of real estate advice and property acquisition, building strategies for clients looking to buy, whether it’s an investment or to live in. We use our expertise to guide location choices, research particular properties and report on them. A buyers agent will tell you where and what you should be buying, as well as how much you should be paying.
What should someone consider before approaching a buyers agent?
The reason you’d employ a buyers agent is to outsource the buying process to people who do it for a living. It increases your chance of getting a greater return than what you’d get on your own. It saves time and gives you peace of mind. You gain access to information and resources that you’d otherwise struggle to get your hands on.
Instead of looking through properties and trying to learn the ins and outs of the market yourself at night once the kids have gone to bed, employ people who do this as a full time job to do it for you. The marketplace is constantly changing so all your research becomes irrelevant a couple of months down the track anyway. A lot of people use us because they want someone to put context around their ideas, for instance “we’re thinking this- will it work, is it feasible, is it a smart way to spend my money”?
You should definitely look for a fee for service agent, rather than one who has a percentage based commission, as they won’t be motivated to look for a more expensive house and the process stays completely objective.
Do you have some advice for people wanting to either enter the market for the first time, or buy another house?
First home buying is about being educated by unbiased experts: someone who doesn’t have a product to sell you. Take the time to understand the market. It’s not all about having the money to buy, it’s having the knowledge to buy smart.
First time investors often make the mistake of letting emotion get in the way. They tend to buy in areas they know and like rather than what’s the most logical and best move from a monetary sense. The biggest risk is the herd mentality, where investors buy in areas that have already gone through significant change because they’ve become popular, rather than entering markets before the growth period starts.
Do you have any buying tips for the Melbourne market right now?
Don’t get caught up in the media headlines. Many sub markets are still performing really well. Get educated. Know that there are many locations producing strong returns that aren’t right in the city. Try and take the emotion out of it and be patient or you can easily end up spending too much money on the wrong property.
Has this sparked your interest? Get in touch to chat about Julian’s work further.