Peter Matthews, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Realtair, has started a two-year tenure as president of the Real Estate Institute of NSW (REINSW).
Mr Matthews takes the reigns from Laing+Simmons Chief Executive Officer Leanne Pilkington, who remains on the REINSW Board.
As the industry moves from lockdown to the new operating environment, Mr Matthews said his initial focus will be on communication with members, to ensure the issues most important to them are represented to government.
“Agents have been focused on navigating the COVID-19 environment in recent times,” he said.
“Now, with operating conditions returning to normal, it’s a matter of getting to work on what the future of the industry looks like.
“As the peak body for real estate in the state, REINSW will work directly with our members to ensure the challenges, opportunities and priorities as they see them, are our priority too.”
Mr Matthews said REINSW would continue its push for reform, including the appointment of a real estate-experienced, dedicated regulator for the industry, as well as to strata laws, particularly as they relate to accessibility.
“There is no shortage of regulation in the industry but there is a disconnect between compliance and delivering on consumers’ contemporary expectations,” he said.
“We’re focused on reform with the potential to deliver better consumer outcomes.
“REINSW will also continue the work on the path to professionalism for the industry. On this score, having navigated the COVID-19 environment, we’re ready to make new strides forward.”
A long-term REINSW Board member and president for the past four years, Leanne Pilkington’s tenure is highlighted by the significant strides the industry has made toward becoming a recognised profession, the 600 per cent increase in educational and training standards now demanded of aspiring agents, as well as navigating the industry through COVID-19.
Ms Pilkington retains her position on the REINSW Board and will remain a high-profile and influential industry figure in the future, supporting Mr Matthews in the transition.
Mr Matthews paid tribute to his predecessor.
“I’ve been fortunate to work with Leanne with the REINSW over the past few years and it’s a testament to her talent, commitment and influence that she’s so admirably led the industry through one of the most challenging periods in our history,” Mr Matthews said.
“The REINSW is in a strong position to continue to represent the interests of the industry, which is the state’s largest economic contributor, and we have the ideal platform to continue the important work on the transformational initiatives we have in motion.
“On behalf of the REINSW, including our members, we say thank you.”
Mr Matthews started his career in 1991 as a 19-year-old and by the age of 22 was calling his first auction. Over the years Mr Matthews has called more than 25,000 auctions across Australia and New Zealand.
Across his career, Mr Matthews has held roles such as chief operating officer for Ray White NSW and as a senior associate in Ray White New Zealand. He was also the general manager for real estate services for Fairfax Digital and the general manager of APM, a Fairfax company, where he managed more than 90 staff.
Mr Matthews started Realtair, a middleware platform serving the real estate industry, in 2016, with the platform merging with Damien Cooley’s AuctionNow in 2020.