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Property Spotlight: Gorgeous Character in Mosman NSW

Mosman is hands-down one of Sydney’s most recognisable suburb names, known for it’s rich, beautiful surrounds and the lifestyle it offers the locals. The NSW suburb is also known for it’s dining, fashion and famous faces you’ll see around the suburb.

Mosman’s median price is a little over $3.7m, so getting a foot into the suburb is tough, but then there’s all the competition – 1,174 visits per property on average, almost double the NSW average.

90 Belmont Road, Mosman NSW

Presented by…

Click images to view high-res

From the agent:
Discover a quintessential family lifestyle in this charming double brick cottage, offering a picturesque façade and light washed interiors with retained vintage elements. Perfectly placed for convenience, it’s a walk to both Mosman and Cremorne village shops, city buses, schools and restaurants.

– Generous dining room and a distinct spacious living area
– Private backyard on a large level 513sqm with a timber deck
– Gas and granite kitchen and a beautifully renovated bathroom
– High ceilings, timber floors, air conditioning and a carport
– Includes full DA approval and Construction Certificate package to create a substantial family home.

Enquiries via Realesate.com.au

This week’s Property Spotlight brought to you by:
The Agency – North (Web / Facebook / REA Profile)
Scott Thornton & Erik Stoneberg

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BREAKING: Labor Pulls Negative Gearing Policy Info From Site

Source: the morning bulletin

The ALP’s website has significantly cut-back the information available on their headline policy of negative gearing reform. The changes include removing nearly 90 paragraphs of information and fact sheets, including explainer charts and diagrams, down to just 10 paragraphs.

Despite the lack of information, the site still lists the policy as being put into effect as of the 1st of January 2020, that negative gearing will only be available for new homes, the policy will be “grandfathered” so existing negatively geared properties will not be affected, and the capital gains tax discount will be reduced from 50% to 25%.

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Visit their Negative Gearing policy page here

Tech Blunders Revealing Labor Backflips

The policy, known on the ALP site as “Positive plan to help housing affordability” has been removed from Labor’s “Campaigns” policies overview page.

This is not the first time in the past 12 months a change to Labor’s website regarding negative gearing has grabbed headlines; in December, a change to the site suggested that Labor may have been reconsidering the policy as early as October last year.

“Campaigns” overview on the ALP’s website Source: alp.org.au

These changes appear after significant backlash from across the real estate industry, lobbying from the REIA, economists, media publications and even the general public about the effect of reforming negative gearing during one of the worst housing downturns in decades.

Recently, Bill Shorten hit out at agents directly saying that agents directly benefitted from negative gearing, going as far to suggest agents ran their businesses on public funds from users of negative gearing.

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BREAKING: Bill Shorten Hits Out At Agents

Source: The Australian

Quote-Only Article

Bill Shorten has hit out at the REIA’s campaign to fight Labor this election, saying:

“Well, the real estate agents, it’s obviously in their financial interest to keep taxpayer money flowing to their business model? You’ve gotta ask yourself, why are they campaigning?

They’re campaigning because they like to have people bidding for houses who are getting a taxpayer subsidy.

Because the more people they have bidding for houses, the more they can charge their percentage on the sale.”

Bill Shorten – Labor Leader

The comments come as Bill Shorten and Labor have been accused of inciting a “class war” against professionals and the wealthy.

First posted by The Australian

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LJ Hooker Avnu CEO Walks

LJ Hooker Avnu Website

A year has not yet passed, and LJ Hooker’s “disruptor” agency Avnu has lost a key executive from the business.

Outgoing Avnu CEO Jason Chuck Source: AFR

Jason Chuck has left the group to join Domain, taking his experience with several tech companies including eHarmony and Houzz with him. Chuck told AFR he left Avnu for “personal reasons”.

This newest announcement comes after LJ Hooker abandoned plans to launch an “online disruption play” called Settl, back in 2017, as LJ Hooker attempted to join a long list of big-name brands trying to carve out a slice of the market.

Currently, Avnu’s only office is located in Sydney’s Lower North Shores, with 15 staff listed on their website, and just 21 listings available currently.

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Recently Sold… By Who?

The Avnu website currently shows 100 recently sold homes, however REA lists some of these homes as sold by competitors.

44B Botanic Road Mosman, sold by LJ Hooker Avnu’s founding agent Michael Coombs, as seen on the Avnu Website
The same property as it appears on REA, sold by Di Jones in 2016
Who really sold G02/41 Gerard Street
Cremorne? Avnu or Di Jones?
30 Raglan Street Mosman – Avnu & Di Jones
39 Musgrave Street, Mosman – McGrath or Avnu
10 Mandolong Road Mosman – Avnu or Di Jones
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REIA Starts 2019 Anti-Labor Election Campaign

A screenshot from one of REIA's anti-Labor campaigns Source: Real Estate Institute of Australia

SEE MORE: REIA campaign videos & how to share them at the bottom of this article

The REIA has released several pieces of media aimed at cutting down Labor’s negative-gearing policy via a 4 week election campaign of it’s own.

Adrian Kelly, REIA President, spoke to The Australian and said the REIA would be looking to tap into it’s member’s databases to spread their campaign far and wide.

Release by the REIA available on their website

“It will ensure that the issues ­relating to the taxation of property are an integral part of the campaign and that all political parties, candidates and voters know the consequences of the opposition’s policy on negative gearing and capital gains tax,” Kelly said.

“Our industry makes a huge contribution to the economy and REIA does not want to see ­economic growth put at risk by the proposal.”

Mr Kelly came has taken the reigns of the presidency of REISA after news broke that the ex-REIA president Malcom Gunning & his wife were facing charges of misuse of trust funds.

Opposition Treasury spokesman Chris Bowen , Source: The Australian

In a response to the real estate industry’s actions, opposition Treasury spokesman Chris Bowen made a statement tackling the anti-Labor campaign.

“There’s no surprises here that vested interests in the property sector are arguing against the ­reform of tax concessions for those seeking their fifth or sixth investment property while many first-home buyers are still locked out of the housing market,” Mr Bowen said. “There’s no news here. These vested interests campaigned against Labor’s housing affordability reforms in 2016 and will do it again this time.’’

Chris Bowen, Labor Party

Labor’s renewed vigour regarding negative gearing after a tech-blunder revealed the party had potentially begun to change it’s mind on a long-held policy position.

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See The REIA Campaign Videos Here


The video ads by the REIA are publicly available through their Facebook page, and so far have gathered over 80,000 views on Facebook.

NG_Generic (2)

Don't be tempted to ignore the political debate. Changing negative gearing affects everyone. https://buff.ly/2Ugj9Tj #auspol #negativegearing #negativegearingaffectseveryone #reia #cgt

Posted by Real Estate Institute of Australia – REIA on Tuesday, 9 April 2019
The REIA’s generic negative gearing video advert
NG_Buyer (1)

Are you buying? Don't be tempted to ignore the political debate. Changing negative gearing affects you too https://buff.ly/2Uq0xjV #auspol #negativegearing #negativegearingaffectseveryone #reia #cgt

Posted by Real Estate Institute of Australia – REIA on Wednesday, 10 April 2019
Advert targeting buyers

Are you a landlord? Don't be tempted to ignore the political debate. Changing negative gearing affects you too https://buff.ly/2KlTZOB #auspol #negativegearing #negativegearingaffectseveryone #reia #cgt

Posted by Real Estate Institute of Australia – REIA on Thursday, 11 April 2019
Advert targeting landlords
NG_Home Owners (1)

Are you selling your home? Don't be tempted to ignore the political debate. Changing negative gearing affects you too https://buff.ly/2Ki1l5B #auspol #negativegearing #negativegearingaffectseveryone #reia #cgt

Posted by Real Estate Institute of Australia – REIA on Tuesday, 9 April 2019
Advert targeting home owners
NG_Tenant (1)

Are you a tenant? Don't be tempted to ignore the political debate. Changing negative gearing affects you too https://buff.ly/2G8gAdm #auspol #negativegearing #negativegearingaffectseveryone #reia #cgt

Posted by Real Estate Institute of Australia – REIA on Tuesday, 9 April 2019
Advert targeting tenants

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Purplebricks Sales Director: No-Beef With “Old Fashioned Commission Collectors”

An advert from Purplebricks TV campaign - Source: REB

Purplebricks tried to offer an olive-branch to the industry, but it came out like a poke in the eye with a stick.

In a 28 minute podcast, the national sales director of Purplebricks Australia,
Sean Green, has gone on record to try to quell the feud between agents and the self-titled disruptors.

The interview appeared on the “Secrets of the top 100 agents” podcast, which is aimed at interviewing the biggest listers and sellers in Australia, of which, none of Purplebricks’ agents were featured in the top 100 category in 2018.

The interview came out a day after the AFR published an article stating that analysts from investment bank Berenberg warned the self-titled industry disruptor would need to exit the Australian & US markets if it wants to survive.

Green: No-Beef With “Old Fashioned Commission Collectors”

Interviewed by Tim Neary, editor at Momentum Media, the executive spoke about the company’s struggles to adapt to the Australian market, and the ongoing battle with real estate agents.

“We have no beef with real estate agents in Australlia, ain fact most of our agents in the field have previously been real estate agents with other franchise groups or independent offices,” Green said.

Despite the efforts to repair the relationship with agents by appearing on the podcast, Green still referred to agents by the nickname now famous from their TV adverts.

Neary: “I’ve talked about that online as the traditional model, so we’ll keep that sort of theme consistent, (calling it) that traditional model of real estate-”

Green: “We do refer to that as the old fashioned commission collectors, but I’ll go with traditional-”

Sean Green declares Purplebricks has no-Beef With “Old Fashioned Commission Collectors”

When asked by Neary why he thinks there is a poor relationship between Purplebricks and established agents, Green says of agents

“… they’re fundamentally threatened by the new player being Purplebricks, and the way we market our product in terms of it’s a lot less fee so there’s a fear for them with a downward pressure on fees in terms of our fair fixed fee that we charge, that it’s going to have a downward push in terms of the income that they’re going to earn.”

Bad Press & Cultural Issues

Relating to the recent and unrelenting coverage by the AFR regarding Purplebricks, Green spoke about the company’s restructuring efforts to meet the demands of the Australian market.

“I think to be frank and honest with you, there were some mistakes that Purplebricks made when they first came to Australia with their model,” Green says.

“I think the original business model they brought to Australia probably wasn’t the best one for Australia, and therefore I think there was some ramifications from actually implementing that model,

“From what I’ve read and what I’ve heard there were some cultural issues, I think the model moves fairly quick, it’s a fairly progressive sort of business,  I think there have been some people potentially left behind with the way we’ve moved fairly quickly.

“I think the modelling around what agents were able to earn  on a per sale basis made it challenging for them to make a living in the early days, obviously we’ve made a substantial change to that.”

Sean Green, Purplebricks

Editors Note: Quotes from the “secrets of the top 100” podcast have been shortened to keep this article concise. The full interview can be found here.

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Purplebricks Advised: Get out of Aus & US to Survive

Analysts from investment bank Berenberg have warned last Friday that the self-titled industry disruptor will need to exit the Australian & US markets if it wants to survive.

The German private bank said in a note:

“Having flown too close to the sun, with operations in five countries and cash burn of circa £7 million [$12.9 million] a month, we believe the group will be forced to seek additional equity at a significant discount or a doubtless expensive debt facility; or to abandon the Australian and US operations and retrench to the UK and Canada,”

Berenberg Investment Bank

Purplebricks hit back however, saying they are still considering strategies to boost the business in Australia, with the company’s global COO saying:

“Our transformation over the last six months is bearing fruit, and we are pleased with the recent growth in instructions and sales. Recently, we have boosted our agent numbers and expanded to new regions, bringing our proposition to more Australians.”

Purplebricks Global COO

Despite management at Purplebricks insistence that the company has a bright future, many investors in the company and industry commentators have questioned the business model.

Anthony Codling, a former analyst at Jeffries, was critical of the company charging upfront fees, “especially if Purplebricks doesn’t disclose how many homes they actually sell. Sale agreed is not actually sold.” he said.

Disruptors Falling Short In Aus

Purplebricks failure to succeed in Australia isn’t unique, as the country faces one of the toughest real estate climates in memory, many other disruptors are also facing headwinds.

In December last year, DIY home sales website BuyMyPlace was sold for just $100,000 to accountancy firm KordaMentha, owing $5m to creditors.

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HomeStart Finance Joins Aussie Home Loans Panel Lenders

Source: theadviser

HomeStart Finance, the South Australian lender specialising in loans for customers who struggle to obtain home loans from mainstream lenders has joined the panel of lenders available to Aussie Home Loans 75 brokers.

The lender has settled loans for 1,779 buyers with a portfolio of $510 million in the 2018 financial year, with 90 percent of customers unable to source funding from mainstream lenders.

“We are delighted to be joining the panel of lenders with Australia’s largest retail mortgage brokerage in Aussie, which will expand our brand presence and reach across the state.

Aussie is the logical partner for us as the group provides an excellent distribution channel for our loan products, with the ability to reach many home buyers and assist our mission to help more South Australians into their own home sooner,”

HomeStart CEO John Oliver

The lender offers low-deposit and innovative loan products for customers who may struggle to meet the ever-tightening requirements of a bank, and have helped over 70,000 customers in South Australia since 1989.

Bechara Boutros, principal of Aussie Prospect spoke with Real Estate News Group about the partnership, highlighting the importance of the role a non-traditional lender plays in the market given the current lending climate.

“Things are changing in the lending space at a very fast pace and obtaining credit has become more complex. My goal is to help as many customers as possible so having a lender like HomeStart makes a big difference with helping my customers.

HomeStart is a niche lender and may not fit all cliental. They are designed around helping First Home Owners get into the market. They have some advantageous policies to assist with low income or low deposit customers. While they have a real focus on first home buyers they can also help new singles, who might be going through a separation”

Bechara Boutros, principal of Aussie Prospect

Aussie’s partnership now opens the doors for agents to be able to help clients facing financial difficulties obtaining credit, through a referral that could save a deal from falling over at the finance stage.

“(Agents can) ring me on 0404 209 620 or send me an email or text. I prefer the personal phone call but make contact by any means.”

Sponsored Post – Aussie Prospect

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Facebook Ramps Up Property Advertising, Begins Taking On REA

Editor’s Note: This is not an April Fool’s day joke…

The social media giant has begun ramping up it’s property advertising offerings to disrupt the advertising market, with appearances at events including the Property Portal Watch Conference in Bangkok earlier this year, along with holding meetings with C-Suite level executives of major brands.

According to sources who spoke with Real Estate News Group, the tech giant has sent executives to begin scoping out how they might take a larger cut of the property industry’s marketing budget through event attendance and high-level meetings.

Much of the conversation is believed to have centred around how Facebook could better utilise it’s Marketplace Platform to post real estate listings.

By comparison, REA generated AUD$807 million in revenue across it’s Australian & Asian operations in FY2018, while Facebook generated AUD$78.366 billion over the same time period.

Facebook Ads Already Outperforming REA Ads For Enquiry

For David Stewart of Market Share Property in Croydon North, Victoria, a $220 Facebook campaign generated 7 times the enquiry of an $2,100 realestate.com.au advert, despite REA having a “couple of weeks” head start.

“Initially we went with a program that was pretty standard with board, photos, floorpan and REA ad. We have a Premiere all account so the upload to REA was $2,100. After the first couple of weeks we were not getting any enquiries or traction. The opens were like a deserted wasteland of me just playing games on my phone.” David said in an interview with Real Estate News Group.

“So I had a chat with our owner and we took the original photos and sent them off to be made into a slide show video. I selected the music from a subscription I have and sent that off too, to be added to the final cut. I then scheduled a local Facebook ad to send for a week at a cost of $130 and targeted it specifically to the areas I thought the buyer might come from.”

The property advertised by David Stewart of Market Share Property, at 24 GLENPARK DRIVE Wonga Park, Vic

The Realestate.com.au advert attracted 1,021 page visits, 1 enquiry and no booked inspections, at a cost of $2,100.

The Facebook advert meanwhile reached 4,357 people, 7 direct enquiries, 10 comments and 4 booked inspections, at a cost of $220.

Wonga Park – 3 Living Areas!

This hidden gem is an amazing home just waiting for it's new owner.Warm, inviting and spacious, this house is well worth an inspection.$710,000 – $780,000.

Posted by Market Share Property on Monday, 18 March 2019
The Facebook Ad that outperformed a $2,000 listing

When we asked David about selling exclusively through social media, he said: “At this stage I have no considered nor will I consider only selling via social media, not until this is a consistent result replicating many times but I do believe it is a sign of the times and that day is coming, just not today.”

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5 ways to have lush green grass all year

Guest post from home improvement professional, Emma Metson

Not all front lawns are created equal. While many homeowners try to keep their front-yards looking pristine, there is always a neighbour with a better-looking lawn. Making up a huge part of a home’s first impression, this is an area that is essential to get right.

The secret to vibrant, green grass is quite simple. Follow these steps to a brighter, fuller, greener lawn and become the envy of the entire neighbourhood.                                            

Test the soil

When the grass and plants on the lawn do not look healthy, more often than not the problem lies in the soil. Testing the quality and nature of the soil is essential. There are many different kinds, so finding out what type lies below the lawn is vital.

Compact soil, for instance, will hinder grassroots from growing correctly to absorb enough water. The land also needs to be rich in nutrients to promote good growth. Analysis of the soil will provide homeowners with exact information about the nutrients in the land.

The quickest way to test soil is to go to local garden centres, nurseries or home improvement stores. These will often sell DIY kits where the PH levels of the soil can be determined. For more accurate testing, search for the nearest government agricultural department and have the soil sample tested there. The soil can be analysed by a private professional laboratory as well.

The information gleamed will then allow homeowners to apply the appropriate soil amendments.

Applying soil amendments

While there are many different soil amendments or soil conditioners used in the garden, lawns often don’t require too much special attention. Typically, top dressing the lawn with mulch or more nutrient-rich soil is enough.

The most common soil amendments for lawns are lime, fertilisers or organic matter, gypsum and elemental sulfur, adding essential nutrients to soil. Materials like shredded bark or vermiculite help with water retention as well.

Aerate your lawn

It is good practice to aerate the lawn at least once a year. The best time to do this will depend on the weather in the local area. It is best to aerate the lawn during early spring or fall for cool-season grass. For warm-season grass, it is best to aerate in late spring.

Aeration is necessary to loosen compacted soil, which will give roots trouble getting enough oxygen and water.  If the lawn becomes too squishy due to thatch, then aeration would also fix that problem. There are several different methods with which to aerate your lawn.

The best would be to use a mechanical lawn aerator. It works like a lawnmower, but instead of trimming the grass, it punches holes in the ground, loosening the soil and enabling grass roots to absorb water and air infinitely better.

A newly aerated lawn is the perfect jumping point for any repairs that need to be made on the lawn. If there are any patches of missing grass, now would be the best time for reseeding.

Simply take some grass seeds and scatter them in the holes left by the aerator. Add some slow release fertiliser in the holes for best results.

Fertilising and watering

The best way to condition soil to achieve the best results is to use slow-release nitrogen fertiliser. Use this kind of fertiliser moderately, as too much fertiliser may negatively affect the lawn. Read the instructions on the label and follow the directions on the package.

The rule of thumb is to use one pound of slow release nitrogen fertiliser for every one thousand square feet. The beauty with slow-release fertilisers is that the lawn will continue to extract nutrients from the fertiliser over an extended period of time. Apply it once, then water the garden to encourage the fertiliser to reach the roots.

A regular lawn needs at least an inch of water every week. If the weather is scorching outside, then be sure to water the grass every three to five days. Use a small tin can to measure how much water goes into your lawn.

Search online for the optimum amount of water for the specific type of grass on your lawn. Water the grass early in the day so the lawn dries well before sundown.

Trimming the lawn

Resist the urge to cut the grass too short. It will take longer for it to grow but will have the look of a golf course, as well as putting undue stress on the grass. Short grass will also become a breeding ground for weeds and expose the roots to too much sun.

For an ideal cut, set the mower’s blades to a height of three inches or so. The grass will be long enough to retain moisture, shade the roots and prevent weeds from growing.

Make it a point to cut the grass in a different direction. Doing so will enable the grass to stand up straight instead of it leaning towards the direction it is always mowed. Don’t bother to rake up grass trimmings, leave them on the lawn to add nutrients to the soil.

Sharpen lawn mower blades

Finally, just like any cutting tool, it is crucial to maintain the edges of lawn mower blades. Sharp lawn mower blades are more fuel efficient and easier to work with. Dull lawn mower blades will cause the grass to look ragged because of their jagged edges.

Worse, grass cut with dull lawn mower blades will turn brown due to stress. If there are patches of brown in the lawn, then that is a sure sign it is time to sharpen the lawn mower blades.

The perfect lawn can be an elusive goal to achieve. Many think that merely watering the garden and cutting the grass the same way every weekend is enough to make it look fabulous. Just add a few more tasks as indicated above, and the lawn will look better than it has ever been.

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