Elite AgentFEATURE INTERVIEWS

How Tom Wiggins is reaching his full potential in Canberra

Tom Wiggins is a man on a mission. From heading to the gym every morning to crafting his 10-year plan, the HIVE Property Canberra sales associate knows exactly where he’s heading and how to get there. Here, he explains the milestone he’ll reach in 2022 and how a special role model is helping him achieve success.

When you look at the HIVE Property Canberra website, one phrase stands out – “Escape the ordinary”.

When sales associate Tom Wiggins entered real estate a bit over three years ago, that’s exactly what he was doing – escaping the mundane.

A country kid from Cootamundra, two hours north-west of Canberra, Tom grew up doing farm work and working at an abattoir, as well as in hospitality before he decided to pursue real estate.

“I’ve always wanted to use my brain more than my hands,” Tom explained.

“I always wanted a career that had untapped potential, and I love working with people, and I’ve always loved property and design.

“My mum’s also studying to be an architect, so it seemed like it would be a job that fit well.”

The right move

So when Tom got a job in real estate in Canberra, he didn’t hesitate to pack up his ute and make the move to the big smoke.

And it was the right call. So much so that Tom will work as a stand-alone agent for the first time next year.

It’s a venture he’s 99 per cent excited and one per cent nervous about.

“I’m really excited because I’m about to jump back into a lot of residential stuff,” Tom explains.

For the past three and a bit years, Tom has worked alongside HIVE Property Canberra Director Josh Morrissey, and he credits Josh with mentoring him in life and business.

He says without that guidance, he perhaps wouldn’t be in a position to work as a stand-alone agent in 2022.

“The biggest part Josh has played in my life is raising me up to be who I am now,” Tom says.

“A lot of what Josh has taught me has been about life and growing as a man. It’s been about becoming the person first and then becoming the professional.

“He’s actually like a dad to me, to be honest … it’s been really cool because I’ve never had a real, proper role model and that sort of thing in my life.”

An enjoyable role

In a business sense, Tom says his role with Team Morrisey, which also includes Nikki Horner, has primarily been to sell projects, along with assisting on open homes, callbacks and campaign management.

He also usually carries a couple of his own listings at the same time. 

“It’s really enjoyable; I love selling projects,” Tom explains.

“I think my favourite part about selling projects is that I’m quite young, and I sell to people that are predominantly younger. 

“I relate really well to the buyers, and I like helping them navigate that off-the-plan market.”

Tom says there’s a lot of work involved, and he works weekends, but it’s worth it to sell the medium and high-density properties. Most of the stock is apartments, with a few townhouses thrown in.

“With the way the market is going in Canberra, everyone that was buying houses is now buying townhouses, and all your first-home buyers that were buying townhouses are now buying apartments,” he says.

“The off-the-plan market compared to what it was in 2019, we would be easily doing quadruple the sales that we would have done in some months.”

But Tom says you won’t find Team Morrissey pressuring buyers or doing the hard sell.

They prefer to come at selling real estate from an educational standpoint.

“We don’t use really high-pressure sales tactics,” he says.

“We definitely prefer an educational approach. We know the square metres for all of our developments, we know what the inclusions are, and we know the contract conditions. 

“We make sure we know the reputation of the developers and what’s happening in the market at all times.”

Tom says buyers are more educated than ever before, and being the stereotypical salesman doesn’t create the customer experience people seek today.

“We sell on the location, the reputation, the developer, the quality and the finishes,” he says.

“There’s definitely a process to the way we sell.

“It’s very similar to, I find, a listing presentation because you try and uncover those subconscious negative thoughts they may have about a product or a particular style of living, and you can then alleviate those sort of things.”

The customer experience

Tom notes that the other key element the team prides itself on is honest, transparent service. 

Calls and emails are always returned, and there are multiple touchpoints throughout a campaign for vendors and buyers.

He says the current housing market in Canberra is strong, prices are rising and, like most of the country, there’s limited stock, which means buyers are missing out.

“At the end of the day, if there are three buyers and you’re the third one, it is what it is,” Tom explains.

“But we don’t try and give them too much hope. We don’t say we will definitely sell the property to them, we keep it realistic, and they really appreciate the honesty.

“We get a lot of referrals from buyers.”

Tom also says that the strength and support Team Morrissey offers each other is paramount in their ability to deliver results.

Each has complete faith in their teammate’s abilities and commitment to getting the job done right the first time.

“If Josh gives me a task or tells me, ‘I need these calls done’ or ‘I need an offer on this’, then I get it done,” Tom says.

“We just trust each other to do our jobs, and that’s what really builds a strong team.

“If you’re a team that doubles up on a lot of stuff, then you’re wasting productive time. Josh delegates a lot of tasks and we ensure that they’re done.”

10 years from now

As well as going out on his own in 2022, Tom has a clear 10-year plan he’s working towards.

Within five years, he’d like to have grown his own team to three or four, have purchased a block of land to build a house and have two children.

“In 10 years, I’d hope to be out of real estate, I want to do property development,” Tom explains.

“I’d like to have three kids by the time I’m 30 or 31.

“My way of thinking was that I could either spend a lot of time travelling and having fun in my early years or I could utilise them to make my life easier in the end.

“That’s been my goal since I was really young, just to get ahead early so that when I do have kids, I can relax and enjoy it and be in a really good situation.”

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Kylie Dulhunty

Kylie Dulhunty is the Deputy Editor at Elite Agent.