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Proud moment! Up for a National Award from the
Real Estate Institute of Australia

Kitty and Miles Logo

Every year, REIA recognises the best of the best in Australian real estate. In case you’re not familiar with the REIA (The Real Estate Institute of Australia), it’s the national voice for the real estate profession, first established in 1942.

It’s a politically non-aligned organisation that provides research and well-informed advice to the Federal Government, Opposition, professional members of the real estate sector, media and the public on a range of issues affecting the property market.

The REIA National Awards for Excellence 2021 covers all aspects of the real estate sector, including residential and commercial agencies, residential and commercial sales, residential and commercial property management, business brokers, buyer’s agents, community service, innovation and communications. 

So, it’s a huge honour to be nominated for a national Award for Excellence in Achievement after winning the state award in NSW in 2020. This award, in both cases, recognises outstanding achievement within the industry.

It’s particularly a special honour to be nominated in 2021 after a year of uncertainty in 2020. Last year, the public health orders and shutdowns caused great disruption for real estate professionals, agencies and their customers in many ways.

It encouraged and inspired innovation – something that I truly value – and proved that no matter the challenge, there is always a solution. Real estate professionals that adapted have thrived even as the world was facing the greatest uncertainty of all time.

For me personally, the Sydney shutdown had the potential to derail many of my clients and threatened to shut down my entire pipeline. In the first two weeks of the shutdown, I had to make many changes to keep my business afloat and support clients.

These things included but were not limited to:

– Video house inspections

– Pivoting all services online

– Updating all data and market assumptions

– Prompt training on, and pivot to, online auctions

– Requesting agents for additional services (Videos/Photos/Zoom)

– Offering additional support and reporting to buyers

– Increased social media and online marketing

– Provision of masks, gloves and hand sanitiser to clients at private inspections

– Daily advice to clients on fast-paced Sydney market changes

– Advising real estate agencies on how to quickly pivot their marketing to adjust to private inspections, online auctions etc…

And the outcome was exceptional. It resulted in the purchase of six properties for my clients during the six-week Sydney shutdown period.

Another challenge I faced, was the issue of buyer confidence. With an economic recession announced, state shutdowns, conflict with China, and negative media coverage, buyer confusion, and insecurity in 2020 was at an all-time high, especially amongst first home buyers.

Combined with the fact that 95% of all client engagement remained online, even after the Sydney shutdown, I knew I had to optimise the way I managed my clients purchasing journey in all areas: tools, services, and soft skills. So I got to work and looked at the following:

I. I improved my data analysis to ensure housing appraisal accuracy; this became critical in establishing confidence and trust.

II. I provided more tools and touchpoints in Google Drive information folders and regular client video briefings.

III. In terms of soft skills, I provided more updates (emails, texts, messages) along the buying journey and quickened response times to under 30 mins.

Although this was very challenging to do alone and in such a short period, I am pleased to say that it forced me to innovate and think outside the box – and the changes are so successful that they’re here to stay.

Overcoming these challenges has contributed to my nomination for the national REIA achievement award.

Presented by realestate.com.au, the Finalists for the REIA National Awards for Excellence 2021 were announced only late last week (late April 2021) – and I was absolutely delighted to hear the news. I’m especially delighted to be in such great female company.

In total, there were 20 awards announced across three streams: Residential, Commercial and Excellence in the Industry. And the number of females listed as nominees has increased across many different categories from previous years – particularly in the category of Residential Salesperson of the Year, which is always hotly contested.

On a personal level, I’m loving seeing this traditionally male-weighted industry come to life with so many women progressing through the ranks. Women bring their unique flair and expertise to the real estate sector, as well as a taste of empathy that their male counterparts often have lacking (sorry guys!).

This year, the REIA award ceremony will be hosted by the Real Estate Institute of the Northern Territory (REINT) in Darwin. Set to be a night to remember, it will be an open aired event and menu inspired by Tastes of the Territory. 

I will be there enjoying the humidity and crocs (as well as the inspiring company and delicious food). If you’re there also please don’t be shy – please come and say hello.

Cross your fingers and toes for me!