In this interview Neil and Margaret discuss auctions and the tactics to be aware of when buying or selling real estate.It’s an in depth conversation with incredible tips and hints for anyone interested in the real estate industry.

The REIV has received a number of calls from Members citing examples where their clients are being turned around at ‘check points’ as they endeavour to attend a private inspection of a residential property, outside Melbourne Metro and Mitchell Shire, organised in accordance with the Restricted Activity Directions (Restricted Areas) (No 2) and the Restricted Activity Directions (No 13), pursuant to the Stay at Home Directions (Restricted Areas)(No 3).

CEO Gil King has written to the Chief Commissioner of Police asking him to address the incorrect interpretation of the Directions by Victoria Police.

As per our earlier communications, a person from a restricted area may inspect a property in an un-restricted area by private appointment only.

The REIV strongly supports and encourages the preventive measures required for safety of all Victorians. However, shelter is an essential requirement and where people need to move across Victoria for the genuine purpose of buying/ leasing/ selling property, that continues to be permissible albeit with certain limitations.


Please refer below for clarification regarding some of the common questions on conducting inspections under Stage 3 Restrictions.

Open For Inspections are not allowed however can advertise a block of time for private inspections and take people through one at a time?

No. Although private inspection is not defined in the government’s directions the proposed advertisement creates the risk of a public gathering of more than two people outside the property, which would be a breach of the directions. The time for a private appointment should only be shared between the agent, the prospective buyer or tenant, and the occupant of the property, to avoid a member of the public turning up unannounced.

Can people from the same household inspect the property at the same time?

No. The Stay at Home Directions (Restricted Areas) say that a person who normally resides in a restricted area may leave home to attend a private inspection of a residential property. The Directions do not say “a person or people from the same household”, so the agent should take only one person at a time into the property.

Although it is not stated in the directions, a one on one inspection enables the agent to observe everything the consumer does and touches in the property, so there can be more reliable sanitisation action at the end of the inspection. If two or more people are inspecting at the same time this may not be possible and the sanitisation task becomes much greater.

Can people from restricted areas (Melbourne metro & Mitchell Shire) inspect properties in non-restricted areas?

Yes, but with the following considerations:

The team at TG Newton & Co. are well informed on the restrictions in place. Any home buyers or home sellers are welcome to contact us at 03 9568 8000 to discuss any questions about inspecting properties during these restrictions.

Article written and provided by Neil Jenman from . To see the original source of this article please click here.

by Neil Jenman

A common mistake of agents – and the reason they often fail to get the best price for a home – is this: They focus too much on price.

Most agents are prejudiced about price. They are obsessed with how much sellers want for their homes.

Sellers, here’s a hint: Never reveal your lowest price, otherwise it will be the highest you ever get.

Buyers – especially family home buyers – rarely consider money as the main motive for buying a home. Yes, money may limit the amount buyers pay, but the main reason home buyers buy is because they love a home. Agents, however, rarely get this important selling point.

Here is an example. A home-owner has a gorgeous two-storey terrace in the popular inner-Sydney suburb of Darlington. It’s not huge, but it’s quaint. It’s in great condition with two bedrooms, cosy living areas, lovely kitchen, and a garden big enough for a small car (or a medium-sized car if you don’t mind exiting through the sun-roof).

It’s in a quiet street near the University and transport. In minutes you can be in Sydney, at the Opera House, even the airport. Location-wise, this home is perfect.

Thousands of people would love this terrace. It’s what agents call a great ‘starter’ or a lifetime home for a single person, maybe even dinks (double-income-no-kids).

And the price?

A snap at $1.5 million. You can see this home being worth over $2 million one day, easily.

But not according to some agents. They reckon it’s “over-priced” (a favourite phrase of agents who under-work). They (the agents) say it’s worth $1.4 million, maybe $1.3 million.

The owner is saying to the agent, “Just bring prospective buyers through and see what they think.”

The owner is right. Why talk price until someone loves the home? No point at all.

Yet the agents keep saying what agents say to owners: “Drop your price and we will bring buyers.” The owner replies, “Bring buyers and then talk price.”

The owner is right. Forget about the price – for now. Just get buyers – and then, if they fall in love with the home, as many will, you can talk price.

Agents, please understand something – which will help your “vendors” (as you call them): No matter how low the price, nothing will make buyers buy a home they don’t love. And yet, when buyers love a home, almost nothing will stop them buying it. It’s a strange phenomenon, but when they find a home they love, buyers often find the money.

Love is a powerful emotion. People have died for love. Lovers have risked their lives for love. As far back as Helen of Troy, wars have been fought over love.

And yet most agents won’t even show a home on the basis that the buyers may love it.

Instead of saying: “If the owners lower the price, we will bring buyers,” start saying: “If we bring buyers and they fall in love, the buyers may find the money to buy the home.”

When people fall in love, with a person or a property, they do almost anything to buy what they love. Just as they do to be united with a person they love.

The owner of that gorgeous terrace asked his agent to bring more people. The home is vacant, so it is safe in this pandemic. The agent replied, “I have been mentioning your home to every suitable buyer but as soon as I mention $1,500,000, they disappear.”

Well stop mentioning the price! Start focussing on emotion, especially love.

Say to prospective buyers, “I’ve got a lovely two-storey terrace with parking in a quiet street close to everything. I think you’ll like it.”

If the buyers ask the price, the agent can say, “There is no point talking price unless you like it. So, have a look and if you like it, we’ll see if we can figure out how you can buy it.”

Agents have had it too good for too long. They have either forgotten how to sell – or, worse, never learned how to sell.

Plus, by the way many agents behave, they seem to have little life-experience. When it comes to money and love, many agents don’t ‘get it’.

Agents, stop hounding sellers to lower the price so it’s easier to make sales. Do your job. Sellers are paying you a good commission; they expect a good price.

So, forget price – for now – and think about buyers who may love this home.

When people are in love, they do the most surprising things – like finding the money to buy a home they love.

Lennon and McCartney were right, money can’t buy you love.

But agents, love can get a lot more money for your sellers.

Article written and provided by Neil Jenman from . To see the original source of this article please click here.

by Neil Jenman

If you want to sell your home for a great price in these times of COVID-19, you must find a great agent.

There are two stories going around about the effect COVID-19 is having on property sales.

The first story is negative, it’s where agents are saying the sky has fallen in. Everything is dreadful. Sellers are withdrawing homes. Sales results have plummeted to low or non- existent levels. Sellers are being told if you want to sell your homes, you must lower your price – and by a large amount. Things are getting worse. We are heading into recession.

WARNING to SELLERS: Any agent who spins you any (or all) of the above, together with a negative attitude, is not the agent you should hire during COVID-19.

The second story is more positive. It goes like this: While COVID-19 has had some impact, if you have a property in a sought-after area and you find a great agent, you can still get a great price.

Great agents do exist. I know them, I find them, I work with them, I support them together with many of their sellers who are fortunate to have a great agent in this COVID-19 market.

Instead of asking sellers to decrease their prices, great agents increase their efforts. They work hard. They do what it takes. They find solutions, they solve problems.

Agents have had it too good for too long. Most are spoiled and lazy. Plus, they have developed an over-inflated opinion of themselves. They think the reason for their “success” is their intelligence. There’s been a massive ego boom too.

To test the skill of any professional, see how they perform in hard times. Everyone is a good sailor in calm seas; it’s in storms that you discover a sailor’s true worth.

If you are selling in this COVID-19 time, the last thing you want is a negative agent who blames everything on the pandemic and whose only solution is to tell you to lower your price.

Over the past two decades or so, agents have done less work to sell fewer properties than their predecessors. Commissions have increased many times more than the average wage.

Now, for the first time for most agents, the gravy train has stopped. Easy Street is a dead end.

During the boom years, most agents have either forgotten how to sell or they never learned how to sell.

Just consider what most agents have been doing their entire careers.

They list a house for sale.

They sit at an open-for-inspection for half an hour each week.

Dozens of buyers show-up, all clamouring to offer ever-increasing sums for the home until one buys the home. Or, if there are no buyers, the agent “conditions” the sellers down in price until a buyer says yes.

For this – usually less than a dozen hours – agents get between $20,000 and $50,000 especially in the expensive suburbs of Sydney and Melbourne.

The agents then boast how they have “sold” so many homes. But there was rarely any “selling”. The buyers did the buying. A trained seal could have done similar.

In the days when most agents worked for their money, they sold more homes on a weekend than today’s agents “sell” in a month. Most of today’s agents are not salespeople, they are glorified order takers financially riding the real estate boom.

The proof of these statements is now clear. When the boom stops, so do sales with most agents.

So, the pandemic is not the main cause of low sales, it’s the negative attitudes of agents and their lack of sales ability.

Here’s an important message for all property sellers now: Don’t let any agents persuade you to lower your price before they have increased their effort. Lowering a price should be the last resort, after all the sales methods have been tried.

Just ask your agent this question: What have you done to try and sell our home? If you are not impressed with their answer, you probably have the wrong agent. Find a better agent.

Sellers, if you drop the price of your home too soon, you are probably paying for the lack of sales skill of your agent. Find a better agent.

In this market, you won’t get a great price unless you find the right agent.

Here is a description of the right agent:

One who understands the basics of selling. Has a positive attitude. Focuses on solutions not problems. Focuses on the positive points of a home and doesn’t keep telling sellers about negative points of their own home. Skilled in negotiation. Prepared to work hard and do what few agents do – follow up buyers and make lots of calls. Finally – and perhaps most important of all – a good agent has stacks of enthusiasm.

After all, selling is often said to be “the transference of enthusiasm”.

Although hard to find, there are great agents who are making plenty of sales right now. This week I have spoken with three of them.

One in WA, who’s been in real estate for 25 years and has just had his second-best month in his entire career. He says his competitors have “packed up stumps”.

Another in Tasmania is enthusiastic and striving to make May their best month in their history. They are giving their excess profits to the local hospital in thanks for the health care workers’ efforts to save members of the community infected with the virus. These are beautiful people (the agents and the health workers).

And, third, an agent in Victoria where the leader asked her salespeople to follow the first of the four steps in selling: TALK TO PEOPLE.

Her five salespeople committed to speaking with 200 people per week – 50 a day each for four days. Last week they spoke with just over a thousand people. From that week’s effort alone, this team created a massive 118 leads for future sales.

They believe this will result in as many as 25 sales.

What are they doing this week? The same as last week – talking to people.

What are most agents doing these days? Whinging and making pathetic comments such as, “There are no buyers around.”

Well, next time an agent tells you that COVID-19 is the cause of low results, ask them how many people they speak with each day. You’ll soon discover the real reason most agents are not making sales. They are lazy.

These three agents have two main factors that are missing with most agents: First, they are working hard and second, they are skilled in the art of selling.

COVID-19 is certainly showing which agents are great agents; the ones with a great attitude, great enthusiasm, a great work ethic and, of course, as the leader in Victoria has been doing with her team, the ones not sitting waiting for incoming calls, but making outgoing calls.

And, the bottom line – getting great results, making sales.

In the sales world, you only get two outcomes: Results or excuses.

If your home is listed with an agent and not selling and the agent gives you the COVID-19 excuse and asks you to drop your price, ask the agent how many calls he or she made yesterday searching for a buyer for your home.

If the answer is less than 25, you almost certainly have a lazy agent who’s trying to sell your home by getting you to lower your price. Don’t fall for it. Tell your agent to increase their effort. If not, get another agent.

Or call Jenman Support on 1800 1800 18. We’ll help you find the right agent – and we will never ask you for money; we will never ask you to sign anything and we will always do our best to make sure your best interests are protected.

When an agent is hired by a seller and stands to make upwards of $20,000 for selling a home, the agent has a moral duty to work hard for that seller, to make lots of calls rather than placing ads and waiting. Agents who shirk their duty – which, sadly, is most of them, do not deserve to be hired by any sellers.

It’s Anzac Day on Saturday. In the war, air crews had a label they placed upon those who shirked their duty – LMF. It stood for ‘Lack of Moral Fibre’.

Find an agent with the moral fibre to work hard and get you a great result during COVID-19.

If you need help, let us know. We’d love to help you sell well at this time. It can be done.


Article written and provided by Neil Jenman from . To see the original source of this article please click here.


by Neil Jenman

In normal times, this may mean higher prices, but these are not normal times. Normal rules no longer apply. In these times of COVID-19, one thing is certain: Thousands of home-sellers are withdrawing from sale. In addition, thousands are delaying selling.

One of the most common questions in real estate is almost the only question asked now.

Is now a good time to sell my home?

Many home-owners are not even asking this question. To them it’s obvious: These are frightening times. Don’t sell or buy now. Do nothing now.

But, is doing nothing the best for you and your family?

Have you thought it through? Or, are you acting instinctively: When in doubt, say no.

Fear is debilitating. Right now, it’s not only people in lockdown, it’s also ‘decisions’ and ‘actions’.

Many people are terrified to act. ‘No’ is an instinctive response. It seems the only word they can trust. Or the safest word.

What happened to the adage that crisis means opportunity?

What does Buffet say? “Be fearful when others are greedy. Be greedy when others are fearful.” When others are frozen you should act. When others are stampeding, you should wait.

So, what now? Is selling in a pandemic the right or wrong thing to do?

There is always a corollary to the “When to sell” question…

It depends on your CIRCUMSTANCES.

Your circumstances should be the main factor in deciding whether to sell. Indeed, many people feel your circumstances are the only factor.

No matter what is happening in the big wide world, what’s most important to you should be what’s happening in your little world.

If selling your home will improve your life now, sell now. If not, do not sell now.

Despite the fear gripping the country, many owners have sold their homes since the pandemic took hold. Selling suited their circumstances.

There are two aspects of circumstances: Your personal situation and the situation in your area.

For example, if you have found another home (after selling your current home), you may need money from your current home to buy your new home. So, yes, in such circumstances, if your finances fit, selling now is right for your circumstances.

But what if prices have dropped in your area?

Or what if prices may drop – as predicted by gloom-and-doom merchants who, like frogs after rain, are now making deafening noises.

If prices have dropped and you are buying in the same (or similar) area, the price of the home you buy should have dropped too.

Given that most people go up in price when they re-buy, a falling market may be ideal for them.

To use a simple example: If you are selling and prices have fallen ten per cent from, say, one million dollars to $900,000, you’ll feel like you’re “losing” $100,000. So, to prevent this “hundred-thousand-dollar loss”, you withdraw from sale.

Nothing has really changed. Except you feel better because you vow to sell when your home’s value goes back up to $1 million. You just ignore the price drop of your home.

This is what thousands of home-owners are doing now. Waiting for “things to improve”. Which means the only “boom” now is a boom in properties withdrawn by frightened home-owners.

Fear is the world’s number one reason for missed opportunities.

Yet, look what can happen if sellers focus on personal circumstances instead of economic circumstances.

While you may “lose” as a seller in a falling market, you can “win” as a buyer.

If you are buying a home that was worth two million dollars, it may have fallen ten percent which means you now “gain” two hundred thousand dollars.

You “lost” $100,000 when you sold, and you “won” $200,000 when you bought.

The property market in Australia is patchy. In some areas, prices seem to be falling. In other areas prices are holding and, dare it be said, perhaps increasing?

Therefore, it may be possible to sell in an area where prices are steady and buy where prices are falling. If these circumstances apply to you, you should sell and buy now. It’s right for you.

Or, it could go the other way.

Last week, a home-owner was told he’d be “lucky” to get what he paid for his home ten years ago. Such circumstances may justify doing nothing now.

Clearly, the answer to the question: “Should I sell now?” can be yes and no. It depends on the circumstances of the person asking the question.

What if you are not going to buy again, should you still sell during COVID-19?

Well, it depends what you do with the proceeds from the sale of your home. If you have a good financial adviser and you are advised to invest in, say, blue-chip shares based on the maxim of “buy in gloom; sell in boom” that may be good for you.

Just make safety and good advice your focus. If we took as much notice of safety in our financial health as we are taking with our physical health in this pandemic, there would be more financially healthy people.

Some owners are not selling because they are spooked that prices will fall. The doomsayers yell: “Property prices may fall 20 to 50 per cent!”.

But, if this is true, surely, we should all sell now – asap?

What if it is not true?

What if prices do not fall?

Or, if prices do fall, what if it’s mild – and short-term?

Do you sell then?

Or, maybe the opposite happens – and prices rise.

See how confusing it is to predict prices? Then stop trying to do what you cannot do and, instead, focus on what you can do, what’s best for you based on your personal circumstances.

A great investing book is ‘The Zurich Axioms’ by Max Gunther who writes: “Distrust anyone who claims to know the future, however dimly.”

The mathematician Sir Isaac Newton (1643–1727) was one of the most influential people of all time. Yet he infamously lost £20,000 (apx $5m Australian dollars now) investing. A chagrined Newton said: “I can calculate the motion of heavenly bodies, but not the madness of people.” So true.

If Sir Isaac could not predict prices, how can you – or anyone?

As mentioned at the start, thousands of sellers are withdrawing properties from sale. Once the pandemic is over, thousands of properties may hit the market. Will that lead to an increase or a decrease in prices? In normal times, it means a decrease. Won’t normal times be back?



It really ‘does your head-in’ making or hearing predictions based on unknown factors. The greatest stress in our lives comes from situations beyond our control.

If you thought of selling your home in the past, it may be time to do so again.

Sensibly, your most important question is: How will selling my property during COVID-19 affect my personal circumstances?

If it will improve your circumstances, sell. If not, don’t sell. That’s it.

Stay safe: healthy and financially.

Article written and provided by Neil Jenman from . To see the original source of this article please click here.
by Neil Jenman

This sounds like a joke, but it’s true: Three Sydney real estate agents decided to play a round of golf last weekend. When they met, they were in a good mood. Smiles, back-slaps and hand-shakes (despite the warnings) all-around.

“Nice to see you again, Bob.”

“How you are doing, Luke?”

“Glad you could make it, Abdul.”

Four hours later, at the clubhouse, there wasn’t a smile to be seen. They looked like they were having a ‘pity-party’ – staring into their drinks, barely saying a word.

What happened?

Well, the biggest among them – (“Big Bob”), who had a commanding presence – had convinced the others that the sky was falling in.

“I’ve seen it all before,” he said, “I was in banking. I was in the recessions. I saw what happened after 9-11. I was there for the GFC in ’08. I can tell you now, the market is stuffed. Prices are going to crash, and they won’t come back for at least four years.”

There’s an old-saying, “Misery loves company”, so these agents spent the rest of the day together. One didn’t even bother going to work on Monday.

Meanwhile, in another part of Australia, far away from the influence of these three misery-men, a real estate agent called Jenayah Hampton was casting her eyes over the half-dozen sales she’d made in the past couple of weeks.

Suddenly she realised something: Most had been sold for more than expected – by the agent and the delighted sellers. No misery here, thought Jenayah as she prepared to coach her team on how to do more work on-line or using video or ‘Google Meet’.

As for her office being in trouble because the world is in trouble, Jenayah just answered, “All people have to live somewhere – and mostly it’s in houses and we agents are in the business of houses and there will always be some people who still need to sell.”

But what about those headlines saying real estate is going to crash? Or the economist who said prices are going to fall “at least 5 per cent, maybe as much as 20 percent”? Surely, as a homeowner, you’d be silly to sell now.

Jenayah’s answer was so simple and so obvious: “Now, more than ever, home-owners with a strong need to sell are going to need an agent who’s skilled at getting good prices. Our team are trained in a subject most agents know little about – negotiation. I believe our business will increase in the weeks ahead because sellers are getting fussy about which agent they choose. They realise the value of agents who are skilled negotiators.”


But there is another point that sellers need in their agents right now – enthusiasm.

Okay, granted, there has never been so much bad news as there is right now. And yes, we are right to take maximum precautions over our health – and care about the health of others.

But, surely, not everything is bad?

The last time there was a major world pandemic – and, let’s hope, despite the dire predictions, Covid-19 doesn’t get that bad – was in the 1918-1919 Spanish Flu Pandemic. If you know anything about history, you will know what followed that world disaster – the “Roaring 20s”.

If there is one thing this virus crisis should teach us, it’s this: Nothing lasts forever, whether it be good or bad.

Maybe good times, to a large extent, are over – but only for a while. Does it not seem reasonable that if a virus causes widespread fear and a fall in confidence, that a vaccine – or the end of the virus in someway – will cause the opposite: excitement and a return to confidence?

And, when confidence does come back – as it will – there are likely to be many people who will regret missing the chance to buy a nice home at more reasonable price. Not a bargain, but, maybe, a more reasonable price.

You see, if you’re a home-buyer, your chances of “stealing” a beautiful home at a massively reduced price will be slim to non-existent, especially when homes are listed for sale with the best agents, those with high negotiation skills and high enthusiasm.

Here are some reasons why (and how) home sellers can sell for a good price in these bad times:

As already mentioned, it’s more important than ever that you find an agent who’s both enthusiastic and a skilled negotiator. At Jenman Support, we keep a data-base of such agents and you are welcome to call 1800 1800 18 or email if you wish to meet some good agents.

If the pundits are right and prices do drop by up to 20 per cent, then surely the faster you get your home on the market, the more chance you have of avoiding the worst of the [maybe] price falls.

Always remember, putting your home for sale is not the same as selling your home. If you can’t get the price you want, you can just choose not to sell.

Right now, many home-sellers are withdrawing their homes from sale for no other reason than fear of the future or fear of being offered a low price. Or, they have met one of those negative agents who play golf when they should be selling real estate.

So, in many areas, because of homes being withdrawn, there are less homes for sale now. When supply goes down, prices usually go up – not down.

The stock market has fallen by about a third in the past four weeks. When share prices go down, the rule is simple: real estate prices often go up.

So, if you want to sell your home now, during these most terrible of times, it need not all be gloom and doom.

If you own a good home in a good area and you find a very good agent, chances are you can still get a very good price.

Why not give it a try?

What’s the worst that can happen? You’ll decide not to sell which will be the same as if you didn’t try to sell – no difference, no loss.

What’s the best that can happen? You may achieve what the sellers who have chosen enthusiastic skilled negotiators are achieving – a higher price despite the virus scare.

It’s not all doom and gloom. But if you give up without trying, how can you ever do well?

So, again, the message if you’re keen to sell now is: Give it a try.

You may get some great news – and won’t that be a change from all bad news around today?!


COVID – 19 (Coronavirus)
From Jim Grigoriou and all of us at


As we all know, our world is in the grip of what the World Health Organisation (WHO) has classed as a “Pandemic” regarding the virus known as COVID – 19 (aka ‘CORONAVIRUS).

Each day there seems to be more bad news, more fear and more worry in our community. Although, like many Australians we felt a huge surge of relief at our Federal government’s wise decision on March 19 to effectively “seal Off” our country from the world. Self-isolation has proven to be very effective.

Although compared to other places, Victoria has barely been touched – and, for all our sakes, we hope we avoid the worse of this insidious virus – our hearts go out to those in the world who are suffering. We also offer our deepest condolences to families who have lost loved ones. In addition, we feel enormous sympathy for all whose livelihoods are hurt or whose savings have been decimated due to share prices plummeting.

At TG Newton the safety and well-being of our customers and staff has always been our priority.

During this virus crisis, we will do our best to ensure minimum inconvenience to customers while ensuring maximum safety for everyone. We sincerely seek your patience and understanding.

Here are some points we wish to share with you about this worrying period:

  1. We will rigidly abide to all health and safety requirements.
  2. Our staff now have the option of doing much of their work from home.
  3. Staff members showing any signs of illness will be asked to stay home.
  4. We will only show homes to qualified and identified buyers. We will not hold any public ‘Open Home’ inspections for any reason. We suggest all agents stop such inspections.
  5. We will video properties and offer ‘video inspections’ to buyers. So, in many cases, you can sell your home without buyers physically inspecting it. Conditions may apply.
  6. We will not be calling at your home unannounced. By pre-agreed appointment only.
  7. As far as possible, we will ‘meet’ with clients by phone conference or video link calls.
  8. We will resist all attempts by ‘opportunists’ to lower prices of our clients’ homes.
  9. We may ask some landlords to offer ‘deferred rent’ to tenants whose incomes are hurt.
  10. We will increase our services hours from 9.00 – 5pm to a 24/7 availability service.
  11. No matter what it takes or costs, we will never charge any customers in advance.

Let’s all be confident about one sure fact THIS CRISIS WILL END

“Where there is uncertainty there can be hope. Where there is hope there can be possibilities. Where there are possibilities anything can happen”.   LINCOLN HALL.

Article written and provided by Neil Jenman from . To see the original source of this article please click here.
by Neil Jenman


by Neil Jenman

On January 21 this year (2020), Mrs Lawson, an elderly lady sold her family home in the Sydney suburb of Peakhurst for $880,000. Her agent was a discount agent called Upside Realty.

Eighteen days later, on February 8, the buyer who bought Mrs Lawson’s home for $880,000 re-sold it – in the same condition – for $1,425,000. His agent was a traditional agent, First National Real Estate Hurstville.

Upside Realty bills itself as having agents across Australia that charge “no commission”. On their web site, they say: “We get you a great price, give fabulous service and charge a low fixed fee regardless of selling price.

So, of course, they do charge commission. They just call it a ‘fee’. The fee is the same regardless of the price of your home.

Mrs Lawson reportedly paid Upside Realty $8,900 to sell her home for $880,000. A typical agent would have charged as much as $22,000. Therefore, as Upside Realty likes to boast, Mrs Lawson “saved” about $13,000 in commission. On its website Upside Realty has a calculator which shows potential sellers how much they “save” with Upside.

In Mrs Lawson’s case, however, there was a major downside with Upside: Her home was short-sold by $545,000. There is no calculator on the Upside Realty website showing how much homes may be short-sold due to the lack of negotiation skill by Upside Realty sales agents.

When the amount by which her home was short-sold ($545,000) is added to the fee she paid ($8,900), the true cost for Mrs Lawson to sell her home with Upside Realty was $553,800.

But, as the agent repeatedly said, “She was very happy.”

Well, of course she was happy. Like thousands of sellers, she did not realise her home could have sold for more. Nor, apparently, did Upside Realty.

In a conversation with Jim Grigoriou, author of a soon-to-be-published book called ‘The Real Estate Short Sell’, the agent said “The buyer found out it was a potential development site. We did not know that.”

But, again, the agent repeated that the owner was “very happy.”

The danger for sellers with using a discount agent is that agents who accept a low fee may sell homes for low prices. There is a saying in the real estate world, “If they can’t negotiate a good fee for themselves, how are they going to negotiate a good price for their sellers.”

According to its website, the managing director of Upside Realty is Adam Rigby described as a “serial entrepreneur”. Under his photograph it says: “We get you a great price, give fabulous service and charge a fair fee. It’s the way real estate should be.”

Mr Rigby has given many interviews to the media saying that Upside Realty’s salespeople get the “highest price” for sellers.

But despite several attempts to reach Adam Rigby over the past week by both email and phone, there has been no reply.

When selling your home, Upside Realty suggest that “the best way to get to know our agents is to read their reviews on Rate My Agent”.


What most sellers do not realise is that Rate My Agent is paid by agents. From 750,000 reviews on Rate My Agent, try finding one bad review. Or, try leaving a bad review.

According to Roy Morgan, the independent (not paid by agents) respected research company, around 92 per cent of consumers do not trust real estate agents. But, according to Rate My Agent, three-quarters of a million consumers love real estate agents.

As Jim Grigoriou writes in his new book, “Rate My Agent make the auction clearance rates look honest.”

For sure, there may be many cases where Upside Realty save sellers a lot of money. For sure, they may often do the same as the traditional agents and charge less.

But the true test of the worth of any company is what happens when something goes wrong. In this case, a trusting elderly lady seems to have short-sold her home by more than half a million dollars.


How can this happen?

Mr Rigby, are you there?

Until such time as the managing director of Upside Realty addresses this issue, perhaps all sellers need to proceed with great caution when choosing this “no commission” agency.

As Mrs Lawson is soon to discover, her “no commission” deal was very expensive.

Article written and provided by Neil Jenman from . To see the original source of this article please click here.
by Neil Jenman

Craig is a smart fellow. But he can’t believe what’s happened while trying to sell his gorgeous home in a leafy Melbourne suburb.

His main gripe is the way his agent is handling the sale and the shoddy way he is being treated.

Before Craig signed-up, the agent was charming. Nothing was too much trouble. As for the home, the agent was full of praise. “One of the most beautiful in the area,” the agent said, “I am sure you’ll get at least $1.2 million.”

Stupidly – and Craig is kicking himself – he paid five thousand dollars in marketing costs and, far worse, agreed to public auction, the worst way to sell a home.

Craig should have known better. He should have known that the advertising money is to promote the agent not his property. He should have known that agents already have buyers on their books; if not, they can go searching for buyers without the lazy method of advertising.

Finally, Craig should have known that auctions almost never get the highest price.

Still, the agent convinced Craig that $1.2 million “wouldn’t be a problem”. So, he and his wife, Carol, signed-up and paid the advertising money.

And then everything changed.

“It’s like he’s two different people,” said Carol. “The agent who signed us up is so different to the agent now.”

Gone is praise of their home. It’s replaced by constant negative criticism. When they express disappointment, the agent says: “This is what the market is telling us.”

The agent is no longer talking about $1.2 million. He’s saying the “market feedback is around a million dollars”.

Worse, he is advertising the property with a “price guide” of $900,000, despite Craig saying they must get $1.2 million.

As for advertising the property at $900,000, the agent is giving the excuse all agents use to justify false low quotes: “It’ll attract more buyers.”

The agent is right. If a home worth $1.2 million is advertised for $900,000, it will attract more buyers.

But at what price? At $900,000, of course.

Come the auction there might be many buyers but all hoping to buy at the agent’s price guide of $900,000. When the bidding stops around $900,000, the agent will pressure Craig and his wife to sell by saying, “This is what the market is saying.”

But the agent has been looking in the wrong market!!

If you want to sell your home for $1.2 million, the first thing you need is buyers who can afford to pay $1.2 million. It’s so basic. It’s common sense.

Sellers should never allow agents to under-quote the price of their homes, no matter what excuses they are given to justify such deceit.

Now, as the auction approaches next Saturday, Craig and his wife are full of anger and fear. Anger at how the agent has changed and fear their home will not sell near their price.

Craig wishes he could sack the agent. But he is “signed-up” for 90 days.

Consider the madness of what’s happening here.

The agent deliberately misled Craig and his wife into signing-up with him. Once they signed up, the agent acted like an abusive partner when the wedding was over.

If the agent was her husband, Carol would kick him out. If the agent was an employee in their business, he’d be fired.

But because he’s an agent, they are stuck with him. Yes, this is madness.


Always insist on a ‘right to terminate’ clause in any agent’s agreement.

Contact your lawyers and ask them to design words for you. Or do it yourself. Write on the agreement: “The sellers have the right to cancel this agreement without penalty or further liability if the agent has not met the sellers’ expectations”.

If the agents won’t agree to such a clause, do not hire them.

Remember, it’s your home, the agent is your employee. If your employee does not meet your expectations, you must have the right to fire the employee.

Your home is too valuable to be in the hands of the wrong agent.

And, besides, life is too short to make the greatest mistake most people make in their lives – spending too much time with the wrong people.

better price for your home
Article written and provided by Neil Jenman from . To see the original source of this article please click here.

2 Questions and 3 Golden Rules.

by Neil Jenman

Yesterday I saw an email that made my blood run cold. It was from a property identity. He was inviting consumers to listen on-line to a panel of property “experts”.

The first name on the list of “experts” is someone whose clients have suffered some of the worst horror stories I’ve seen.

As I saw this expert being described as trusted, respected and ethical, I felt nauseous. Even more so considering that I have personally informed the man recommending him that this bloke is highly ‘sus’. I have provided horrific evidence of what this “expert” has done. But, as often happens (when money is changing hands in real estate), silence was the reply.

Please understand: The more credible people appear, the more care you need. The best con artists look respectable. They win your trust. That’s how they rip you off.

If you have read my book, Success Takes Character, you will know I had a strained relationship with my father. In his personal and business life, he caused enormous harm. But, gee, he could turn on the charm. He had many quips. One was this: “You can’t cheat your enemies because your enemies don’t trust you. You can only cheat your friends.” He would roar with laughter at his wicked wit.

But, it’s true. How can someone cheat you unless you trust them?

So, let’s look at what this so-called property expert has done.

He has sold properties that have plunged – when he assured investors they’d go up in value.

This “expert” promised to find the right property in the right location at the right price. The opposite is closer to true.

This expert seems to be the president of every safe-sounding association and seems to have won a string of awards.

Who’s giving out those awards?

Who is recommending this bloke?

I’ve been contacted by two of his investors, each has lost at least $300,000. If it makes me sick, imagine how the investors feel.

How many more investors have dealt with this bloke? Dozens? For sure.

Hundreds? Quite possibly.

And yet, here he is today, right now – probably as you are reading this article – giving advice to consumers as a “trusted expert”.

As for the man promoting him, shame on you when you know the harm he’s caused.

So, why don’t I give you his name?

Well, because my wife does not want me to risk our financial future.

Some of these property “experts” will go to great lengths to protect their “good name”.

Yes, remember, back in 2005, when I was attacked and hospitalised with life-threatening injuries after I confronted one expert?

Well, guess what? It’s fifteen years and every person who invested with that expert in 2005 lost their money. Every cent.

So, if I won’t give you his name, here’s what I can do. Give you two questions you must ask him (and any so-called expert) before you consider doing business with him.

Question 1: Tell me, Mr Expert, have any investors lost money following your advice? If the answer is negative, ask the “expert” to provide a Statutory Declaration to that effect. Be heavy on this point. Don’t be shy, don’t hold back. It’s your financial future on the line.

Question 2: Are you paid a commission by the sellers of any properties? If so, how much? Warning, this expert is paid by both developers (sellers) and investors (buyers) for the same property. This is unethical and, in some cases, illegal. Also, if the expert will not reveal how much commissions they are being paid, do not deal with them.

That’s it – just two questions. Ask these questions firmly and do not do business with anyone who will not give you a clear answer to these questions.

Finally, for investing, here are Three Golden Rules:

First Rule: Never be rushed. There is never a genuine need to be in a hurry. Whatever deal they are offering (“for today only”) will be available tomorrow. Property deals are like buses, there is another one along soon. People who are urging you to sign-up fast are doing so for their benefit, not yours.

Second Rule: Never use experts recommended by experts. Dodgy experts associate with other dodgy experts (such as lawyers and valuers). Many lawyers are “in bed” with property experts. So, always get independent legal advice PLUS an independent valuation. I have never seen anyone ripped off if they follow this rule.

Third Rule: Stay away from anyone who asks you to pay any money (called a “fee”) before you buy a property.

And finally, as much as I am critical of typical agents, you will be much safer buying an investment property from a suburban agent than any property expert.

And please remember: The better and more trustworthy a person appears, the more likely you are to be cheated.

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