Lou’s first role after graduating from University with a BSc in Economics was as a stockbroker for Barclays Investment Bank. Over the next 30 years he started and developed existing businesses both in the UK and the US, both as a futures trader at Refco and a stockbroker. In 1995 he decided to call Australia home and commenced working with Bankers Trust (now Macquarie Bank) which drew on his knowledge and contacts to develop their European trading portfolio.
Lou now joins Venus Realty and brings with him a wealth of experience. We’re all about pushing boundaries when it comes to real estate selling, so sometimes it’s necessary when you’re looking for fresh thinking to step outside the box.
The internet is becoming almost the only way to do business. The latest casualties being newspapers,television and bricks and mortar. Australia is also about to experience an "Armageddon" with the arrival of the U.S, Amazon, it will disrupt and create havoc in how we shop. Since they announced in April that they will be targetting Australia over $4 billion has been wiped off the value of retail shares from JB Hi- FI, Woolworths, Wesfarmers(Coles), Harvey Norman, etc. The analysts are forecasting their retail revenues will drop by 16% as soon as they start operating here.
Those that choose to embrace change and adapt their business model will prosper. Unfortunately many will put their head in the sand and will become extinct. Ask yourself this question, why does Amazon account for some 25% of ALL retail business in the U.S? Because it's cheaper and delivers your order within 2 hours. Coles and Woolie's are trying to compete by substantially growing their home delivery service but that is not going to save them. The simple fact is that Amazon are undercutting their massive profit margins. We're just the same. Venus Realty has been offering for the last 8 years the same service as our competitors. The only difference is a reduced profit margin. We know we're right and our significant growth in the last two years is proof of that.
I can tell you from my own experiences as a stockbroker that charging 1.5% in commission could no longer be sustained in today's environment, so charging on average 3.3% in commission to sell the family home, is in my opinion outrageous. Sure you can buy and sell shares on line for as little as $9 but you get no solid advice, no experience and you are "taking on" the far more qualified professionals. Real estate is no different. You want the skills and experience but for a price you're happy to pay. So all roads lead to Venus Realty! Remember it's the agent NOT the Agency that is paramount.
We charge $6,950 + gst and not $15,000 plus advertising on a home sold for $450,000. Why can't the others do it? It's plain and simple it's called greed. The only profession who fully deserves that kind of payment is a surgeon who saved a loved one's life.
We know the consumer is starting to take back control. From the giants in retail and media, their fear is palatable. It's just a matter of time for real estate agents. Let's look at McGrath shares. They came to the market in December 2015 at $2.10 and are now trading at 55 cents (Jun 2017) Right now agents who charge 3.3% play on your fear that there's no way that Venus Realty can get you the same result. I'm here to tell you that's just scaremongering.
Our marketing is comparable and even better in many cases. We 'Premiere' your property on realestate.com.au (89% of the market), as well as domain.com.au, social media and our own website.
Our valuations are based on the same data. Looking for local? You can't get more local then next to Coles at 44 East Street, Ipswich. Our staff were born here or have lived here for many years. No, we're not part of a massive franchise, but we have the same tools. The difference is as an independent we try harder and quite frankly believe "Greed is not good" (apologies to Michael Douglas!)
Remember many charge an immediate upfront payment for advertising. This can range in price from $1,800 to many thousands of dollars. What happens if it doesn't sell - well that's too bad. If they don't charge up front for advertising then it's hidden in their commission. Our advertising is included in our fixed price package. We put our money where our mouth is, by giving you the best exposure we can on major real estate websites and all for a realistic price. No sale. No charge.*
So here's my challenge, call our competitors and ask them why their commission is so high? Why they have upfront non refundable payments for advertising. And finally ask them to detail exactly what they are going to do to market and sell your home for the best possible price. Then call us!
My key role is to ‘get the message out there’ and along with the rest of the team that's what we’re going to do!
PS: Once a trader always a trader - still happy to share my knowledge - just send me an email.
* Professional photography not included. Price: $165 to $220