Tag Archives: Canterbury

Flying the flag for the final time

Holding my final open home was a little surreal and I couldn’t  help but reflect on how they have been a major component of my 30 year real estate career.

Back in 1989 open homes were rare, mostly at the most once per week per property and never on a business day. After all, it wasn’t really kosher to advertise an address, that was seen as too invasive of a client’s privacy. Besides, the real estate agent held the stock and purchasers would have to ask to find out what property was held at any one time as the salesperson controlled the market. The internet didn’t exist and knowing a good real estate agent who held/controlled the listings was important in order to get the jump on any other purchasers in the hunt.

Open homes became more popular and real estate salespeople soon began to appreciate the marketing benefits of sourcing prospective purchasers and sellers along with meeting and greeting the locals.

I look back and open homes have had a huge influence on the success of my real estate business over the years, a great way of “keeping the shop door open” and that one extra open home might just flush out that right buyer, as it did just last week prior to an auction.

On the flip side they came at a big cost, as they largely controlled when I would start and finish work on the weekends, sometimes up to eight in one day! Then of course the hours spent on the phone or sending emails gathering in that ever important feedback for our sellers. They meant sacrificing precious family time and determined when we would take weekends off or sometimes even determined our holidays. Certainly they were an important factor in the level of the service we provided and what consequently became expected of us. Come rain, hail or snow we would be there – to keep the open home flag flying. Today’s purchasers expect open homes and like being able to choose which homes they inspect in a non-threatening way of being able to come and go as they please.

Service-focused agencies regard it as best practice to hold at least three open homes per week for the first four weeks on the market. We now even have open home apps for collating and tracking interest – a great way to manage feedback and target-market prospective purchasers when listing the house down the road.

So, in summary and being honest, I’d have to say that the whole open home thing has been a bitter-sweet pill in reality. Moving forward I am really relishing the thought of having much more uninterrupted time. Will I miss open homes, probably not, but unquestionably they are a necessary evil for any successful real estate team.

Property investment basics from a long-term investor

Have a plan

Back in the 1990s when rents were around $200 per week for the average home in Christchurch I envisaged owning 10 investment properties. My thinking was this would give me a gross income of approx $100,000 per year and with costs roughly around 50% that would leave me with a net income of approx $50,000 – not bad as a passive income I thought at the time. As critical as having a plan, is executing that plan. I still have clients thinking about committing to investment property 20 years after our first discussion!

 

The bank, the tenant and the tax man

These three will immediately put their hand up to help you build a property portfolio. With reasonable capital/equity and income most banks will back you to buy investment property and with current interest rates so enticingly low, it’s really a no brainer. Add to that national population growth which equates to tenants never being too far away from knocking on your door needing a roof over their heads. They too, driven by their need for accommodation will assist with your property investment plan. Then of course there is the tax man. While he plays strictly to the rule-book there are still good tax incentives for owning investment property in New Zealand. All your related expenses are tax deductible and with owning investment property is also likely your overall taxable income will reduce too. This makes it even more attractive if you are pulling a reasonable income and are on a higher tax code.

 

Using somebody else’s money

Property is one of the few investments I know of that you can actually make money from debt. While if you are only buying property for capital growth reasons you may be disappointed with the short term growth rate, it is interesting to note that over the years property typically doubles in value every 7-10 years in New Zealand. Getting a return on little or no cash down is about as good as it gets and it is important to remember that capital growth is based on market value not the size of your mortgage.

 

Good debt – bad debt

This is probably the most profound advice my accountant has ever given me and I have never forgotten it! I still find myself applying this principle in business and investment decisions. In a nutshell, good debt is money borrowed for assets that appreciate in value, while bad debt is money borrowed for assets that decrease in value. For instance a car loses value the moment it is driven out of the showroom while real estate largely increases in value. It’s not that difficult to determine which will bring long term benefit. Remember this basic investment principle and you are well on track.

 

A mortgage can be great savings scheme

Paying a mortgage can often be better than paying into a saving scheme. One, it is compulsory, two, it doesn’t get bigger (smaller if you also pay off principal). Thirdly, the cost of the mortgage you are paying off is offset by the return you are getting on that money. With property yielding a much better return than term deposits, it makes total sense to keep or invest in real estate in this low inflation, low interest rate era.

 

Not a get rich quick scheme

Property has never been a get rich quick scheme and my experience is those that are normally implode before you get the time to check out their validity or typically don’t stand the test of time. As above, with national population growth placing increasing demand on housing stock and with no more land being made, unquestionably pressure will remain on available real estate. An investor with a steady hand on the tiller and focus on the distant horizon is unlikely to go wrong with a long term focus.

 

Christchurch ideal for property investment

Clearly in the post-quake rebuild phase greater Christchurch now has a property surplus. On the scale of larger cities throughout the country, Christchurch has some of the most affordable real estate currently available and it is my belief it will not be sustainable for this to remain at such levels for too much longer. It is also my professional opinion that as the current heart and vibe of the city continues to build it will sell itself both nationally and internationally resulting in strong attractive growth. Investing in Christchurch sooner than later makes total sense for the astute and those poised to take action. Personally, I plan to hold my local property portfolio as I strongly believe we are on the cusp of another growth phase, besides I am struggling to find anything better to sink my funds into.

 

Right now I’m thinking that investment in bricks and mortar is a better option than money in the bank.

Team Griff has long term experience in the property investment market and are happy to assist you with devising a plan to build your property portfolio. Coffee is a great place to start!

EQC announces new policy for on-sold over-cap properties

At EQC.govt.nz:

On 15 August 2019 the Government announced a policy that allows owners of on-sold over-cap properties in Canterbury to apply for an ex gratia Government payment to have their homes repaired.

If you’ve bought a home in Canterbury and discovered that it is damaged over the EQC cap, you may be eligible for an ex gratia payment to cover the cost of repair.

Under the policy, you will have twelve months (no later than 14 August 2020) to register your interest for the ex gratia payment. After that time, the policy will not be available.

If you qualify you may be able to receive an ex gratia payment equal to the agreed cost of repair.

To qualify for the support package, you’ll need to meet the following criteria:

  1. You have purchased a property in Canterbury after 4 September 2010 (the date of the first 7.1 magnitude Canterbury earthquake) and on or before the announcement of this support package on 15 August 2019; and
  1. Before selling the property the previous owner settled a claim with EQC on an under-cap basis; and EQC cover depends on how the natural disaster damage occurred.
  1. Post-sale you have discovered the property has incomplete or insufficient repairs either as a result of defective repair or through damage which had not been properly assessed; and
  1. The cost of the repair, together with the amounts previously paid by EQC for the property is more than the EQC cap ($100,000 +GST); and
  1. You are unable to access private insurance to cover the cost of repairs.

This is will be a welcome resolution to many homeowners who found themselves in a seemingly impossible situation of having no recourse to the original insurer of their property due to believing that all necessary earthquake repair work had been completed. However, the fact that this will require agreement with EQC as to the extent and cost of necessary repairs will be cold comfort for some!

The power of strategic marketing

Effective marketing of property is critical to ensure a positive outcome, let alone the best price.

We at Team Griff make it mandatory to individualise marketing campaigns for our clients and their property rather than taking a “one size fits all” approach or worse still, to copycat what everybody else is doing.

Strategic marketing takes experience, knowledge and skill to discern the needs of the client, their property and of course the market vibe and demographic. Tailoring a package to suit the needs of a client and the property will ensure maximum exposure, be more inclusive of the target market and ultimately produce multi-party commitment to the property whether by written offers or active bidding.

Below is a recent campaign that resulted in an unconditional sale within one week!

  • Property: 3 Lutheran Close, Travis Country
  • Marketing Method: Priced Deadline Sale
  • Asking Price: $490,000
  • Open Homes: Four per week
  • Attendees: 52
  • Offers submitted: 4 – all above asking price
  • Sale Price: $498,000 (unconditional offer)
  • Days on the market: 7

Whether you are needing a basic market update or have definite plans ahead, talk to Team Griff – you can rest assured you are in capable hands, we will listen, consult and advise you specific to your needs and circumstances.

The client experience

Client Experience

What comes first, the commission or the client?

We would all like to think that it is the client’s interests that takes priority, particularly when people are transacting real estate, there is only one thing in mind – seeing the mission accomplished of moving from A to B.

Being mindful of this throughout the selling process is paramount for us as sales professionals and it goes without saying that if this focus is lost, without question the client’s ultimate goal and quality of service is compromised.

Recently it was incredibly humbling to be awarded 1st place for Harcourts Canterbury’s Client Experience Award. For this to be endorsed by our very own clients makes it even more special. To our loyal clients – thank you. That endorsement makes the effort and long hours so worthwhile.

To my team, this award would not be possible alone. Your support both in the field and behind the scenes is what makes this possible. Creating memorable client experiences takes true teamwork.

For me personally, in the twilight of my real estate career that will span 30 years next year, this would have to be the absolute pinnacle and there is no better accolade I would wish to lay claim to – it’s simply amazing and the ultimate in job satisfaction.

This is the absolute reason why we do this every day! Thank you.

Demand for ‘as is, where is’ properties remains strong

As Is Update(3)

Backing onto a strong start to the “ as is” market Team Griff’s 100% auction strike-rate year to date reflects both a strength of this active market for 2018 and the team’s proven marketing expertise.
Underpinning this 100% strike rate is multiple party participation, with an average 4-5 bidders participating in each auction.

Providing our homeowners with a selection of active bidders on auction day is directly attributable to our 1800+ strong database of known ‘as is, where is’ purchasers gleaned from a long track record of sales of uninsured properties dating back to 2012. This translates to competition with the real benefit of not having to rely on one person’s perception of value, as is invariably the case with an “off the street” type sale.

As the supply of uninsured homes on the open market now begins to decrease, we foresee the demand remaining strong, reflecting the inevitable fact that there is a finite supply of these properties.

Whether you are contemplating to sell your ‘as is, where is’ property or simply need a sounding board to bounce options off, please feel free to contact us in confidence – we’re ready to assist.

 

Recent success stories

45 Medway Street, Richmond

45 Medway Street, Richmond
3 beds, 1 bath, 1 living, 1 garage
Declared reserve $110,000
Days on market: 14
Number of inspections: 30
PropertyFiles downloads: 47
Bidders: 5
Sale price: $155,000

1
529 Bower Avenue, Parklands
4 beds, 2 bath, 2 living, 2 garage
Days on market: 21
Number of inspections: 56
PropertyFiles downloads: 32
Bidders: 7
Sale price: $397,000

591 Madras Sunny-5


591 Madras Street, St Albans
4 beds, 2 bath, 1 living, 2 garage
Days on market: 7
Number of inspections: 21
Bidders: 3
Sale price: $365,000

From Rags to Riches…

Rags to Riches

Talk about both ends of the property spectrum! Team Griff have just sold an earthquake-damaged flat in Waltham for $86,500 and a stunning architectural build in Waitikiri for a street record in excess of $1.3m – two Christchurch suburbs that are like chalk and cheese.

In both cases, assisting our owners to move forward with their lives for differing reasons is what makes this business so positively enjoyable. This sort of job satisfaction is hard to beat.

At Team Griff we pride ourselves with such versatility, having the skillset, systems and experience required to service a broad cross-section of both clientele and property.

For the cheapie in Waltham, it was a case of mucking in, digging deep into our 1,800 strong ‘as is, where is’ database of potential purchasers, not being too proud to do the hard yards of selling something that was rather undesirable. On the flipside, the $1.3m sale was one of my old neighbours simply touching base giving the heads up that they were intending to sell within the next twelve months. As it worked out we were working with a purchaser whose brief fitted the property perfectly – the rest being history. Needless to say, the owners were overjoyed with the result, let alone the convenience of not having to go to the open market with all the fanfare and intrusion of a full marketing campaign.

So whether your property is in the “rags” or “riches” basket (or somewhere in between) be sure to make contact, as there is a good chance we will be able to perform our magic for your situation and property too.

Why the New Year is a great time to sell

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Deciding when to sell is an important discussion most homeowners engage in prior to selling. Rating the new year market as a premium time to sell, Team Griff are already taking listings in preparation to hit the ground running in early 2018. Experience has taught us the new year market provides homeowners some real benefits when it comes to selling.

Here’s Team Griff’s key 8 reasons why to sell in the new year:

  1. Less immediate competition
  2. Time to prepare now ahead of a new year launch
  3. Purchasers are refreshed and enthusiastic in the new year
  4. Most of your pending competition are still relaxing on holiday
  5. It’s summer; the gardens look great and buyers are in a better mindset
  6. It’s an easier time to plan, plus it bodes well with new year job relocations
  7. With longer daylight hours there’s more flexibility to best showcase your home
  8. Simply push go now – we’ll do the preparation while you are enjoying family festivities

So if you thinking about selling be sure to touch base now to meet and “set sail” for a new year plan tailored to meet you specific criteria.

We are not the team if you want the cheapest commission, but do call us if you want experience, local knowledge and a team of experienced negotiators you can trust to get the very best possible result – our point of difference and your best saving! Let’s not forget the Harcourts machine and brand that has the reputation of premium selling prices.

When experience counts, whether it’s your earthquake-damaged home or your palace we have the bases covered. We’ll tailor a plan best suited for your circumstances, you, and your home!

Contact us today to discuss your plans on 0274 330 445 or info@teamgriff.co.nz.

Be Sold By Christmas!

Bs Sold by XmasHere at Team Griff we are all about being one step ahead of the market.
Identifying current market trends and in order to maintain a proactive approach we are rolling out our “Be SOLD by Christmas” campaign. Our aim is to enable home owners to capitalise on this pre-Christmas window of opportunity.

Being sold by Christmas means you can kick back to enjoy the festive season prior to a 2018 settlement. Not only are our marketing packages designed to have it all wrapped up by Christmas, our client-tailored sale and purchase agreements drafted specifically to your needs and pre-approved by your solicitor will provide the peace of mind to sign it off anytime during this busy time of year. We call it best practise for a home owner and that’s what we are all about. Team Griff provides marketing and selling solutions that will minimise stress while providing a competitive advantage.

Teaming up with lead salesperson Peter Griffioen “Griff”, our team approach provides the advantage of experience with all activity shared by the same two team members throughout the campaign: teamwork for better results.

So, if you are contemplating selling, be sure to call/email us today to see how our “Be SOLD by Christmas” campaign will work for you, but remember time is running out so best do it now!

‘As Is, Where Is’ Market Update

Live Update- As Is Where Is Market (2)25 Foresters Crescent | Parklands
Inspections: 32
Bidders: 6
Sale price: $365,000 at auction
Vendor feedback:
“Good result today with the sale and appreciated the regular communication; a job well done.”

3 Kakariki Lane | Sumner/Clifton
Inspections: 
35
Bidders: 
3
Sale price:
$515,000 at auction
Vendor feedback:
“While it would be fair to say that ours was not the easiest of properties to sell Team Griff took on the challenge professionally, dug deep and produced several bidders on auction day. The result, a sale price that we were quite happy with.” 

‘As Is, Where Is’ current market comment

Numbers through open homes are still holding up and while some are feeling the brunt of lending institutions both tightening their belts and lending criteria, our owners are still benefiting from multiple parties bidding on the day. The large majority continuing to be sold under the hammer. Team Griff’s sizeable purchaser database of 1500+ “as is” purchasers is proving invaluable when it comes to getting these properties across the line in a firming market. To date with 246 sales under our belt home owners looking to sell can rest assured that they have an experienced team at the ready.
To have the peace of mind that your property has been fully exposed to the wider open market in order to achieve the best possible result.

Do contact us today for friendly chat and to explore the options available to you.
Keep warm,
Griff Signature Jpeg version