One Plus One Equals Three or Four . . .

Q. In your opinion, what are the benefits of using data for real estate agents and for developers?
A. If you truly want to position yourself as the market expert and leader you can’t just rely on your own knowledge – you need to seek data from all avenues and this is why data is so important. The benefit of data is that it gives you the full picture and allows the agent or developer to make a more informed decision rather than just acting on instinct. Using data is also a good way to reaffirm your position and to highlight to potential clients exactly what is going on. A simple graph or table is easy to consume and can help to promote you as the market expert – the one with their finger on the pulse.

Q.How can data and research be used and presented to obtain listings, make sales?
A. When looking to obtain listings and sales, data is imperative. By providing potential vendors with all of the data agents can explain clearly and concisely exactly they arrived at the listing price of the property. With this information, vendors will be able to make up their own mind as to whether that price is correct. ‘Knowledge is power’ as they say and the data affords the knowledge to empower people to make the correct decisions. On the flip-side, when trying to sell, providing this same data to potential purchasers allows them to see why the price of the property is appropriate; it empowers them to make a decision in a shorter timeframe.

Q. What facilities exist to allow data access in a live manner?
A. There is so much data available at everyone’s fingertips. Some examples include listing portals such as realestate.com.au which detail the properties currently listed for sale 24 hours a day/ seven days a week. For those with iPhones and iPads the Commonwealth Bank in association with RP Data and realestate.com.au have developed an application which allows people to access real time listings and recent sales data. Again, this is about making information more readily available in order to allow property purchasers to make more informed decisions.

Q. What data/research is best used by real estate agents for attracting more business?
A. There is plenty of data available for attracting new business. I believe one of the best and the most under-utilized is the average hold period calculation. The hold period is simply the difference between the most recent sale and the previous sale expressed as a number of years. RP Data calculates this number based on all sales from the previous 12 months. If a suburb is found to have an average hold period of 10.2 years it indicates that agents should be targeting those owners that have lived at their current address for more than 10.2 years. These owners are most likely to be looking to move house.

Another good figure to use is an equity calculation. By using an Automated Valuation, an agent can determine an estimate of the property’s value and then by utilizing data on the previous sale price, it provides an indication of property equity. This can easily be used to highlight how much equity an owner has and may help convince them to either re-invest or upgrade their home.

Q.What would you recommend as the best way for an agent or developer to educate themselves on the use of data/research?
A. RP Data trainers can help educate RP Data powered agents about how best to use property data for their business. Outside of this, the best advice is to read as much as possible, remember property is influenced by the economy. Myriad data is available through the Australian Bureau of Statistics such as building approvals, housing finance, lending finance and population growth – all of these influences impact on the property market. This data is freely available and can be used to educate yourself, vendors and buyers and will afford a greater understanding of the fundamentals which drive the property market. Many publications such as newspapers, magazines and websites include insight daily from informed professionals can help to forge a superior understanding of exactly what is happening, remember all these commentators develop their opinions via the analysis of data.

Q. What is a CMA – do I really need to do this when pitching for a listing?
A. A Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) is most often used by real estate agents to provide a vendor with an estimated selling price for their home. A good CMA will provide recent sales information for comparable homes that have sold close by together with information about those properties – how many bedrooms and bathrooms did they have, what was the land area, how many car spaces etc.

A CMA should also include information about the area – a demographic profile, information about local amenity and maps showing the location of comparable properties.

The benefit of using a CMA is that is takes a lot of the grunt work out of setting up a listings pitch to a vendor. The reports are mostly automated and can be customised depending on the situation.

Vendors appreciate the hard data that a CMA is based on and will be interested to know how a price estimate is formulated. The CMA report makes a listing presentation and price estimate completely transparent and demonstrates the comprehensive nature of how a selling price is determined.

Benefits of Using Data

  • Provides Real Estate Agents with data to undertake professional and fact based appraisals
  • Professional appraisal tools such as Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) reports help an agent to educate and manage a Vendor’s expectations and align the market pricing with market conditions.
  • By managing and educating a potential Vendor – data and analytics will increase the likelihood of securing the listing and achieving a successful sale. The same can be said when the agent is dealing with a potential buyer. The professional appraisal helps educate and manage the buyer’s expectation. By having the most comprehensive data in the agent’s appraisal, the likelihood of getting the sale across the line increases.
  • The benefits to an agent subscribing to our data is our platform runs reports which can identify opportunities or challenges – such as properties selling fast in any one particular area. By identifying these key factors early, the agent can get in there before his/her competitors.
  • At the same time, an agent can generate reports that list the length of time a property has been available for sale – those listings that have expired or been extended, will give the agent the opportunity to go in there and educate/manage the potential vendor’s expectations. Again – the professional appraisal is made up of comprehensive data which will support the Agent’s case.

Cameron Kusher

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Cameron Kusher

Cameron Kusher is CoreLogic RP Data’s senior research analyst, specialising in primary and secondary data analysis, property market commentary and consultancy. Cameron has a thorough understanding of the fundamentals such as demographics, trends, economics and spacial analysis and is a regular keynote speaker for property-related groups, regulated industry bodies, corporations and the government sectors.