Passion for real estate: Trent Faunt

Trent Faunt has had a passion for real estate from a young age, ever since he watched his parents operate a successful furniture enterprise and learned the ins and outs of business. He was listed as top agent after his first year at Kingaroy Real Estate and then made the move to Brisbane, where he now works for Place Estate Agents with top agent Simon Caulfield.

Trent-FauntTell us about your start in real estate?
I’ve lived in Kingaroy (about 200km to the north-west of Brisbane) for most of my life, and this is where my real estate career began. I started work at Kingaroy Real Estate when I was 20 years old; I had a dream and every intention of achieving it. The average sale or listing price in Kingaroy was between $200,000 and $250,000. I had over 100 listings within my first year in real estate, but whilst these listings were very easy to come by the buyers were few and far between!

What made you choose a career in real estate?
From an early age and throughout my life I’ve been exposed to the world of business and property. My parents have owned and successfully operated several small businesses. The gift of the gab, an ability to sell and a strong work ethic have been ingrained into me from a young age. You could almost say that it’s hereditary!

I was introduced to real estate when I was young, as my parents would take me along on drives to view various properties, irrespective of whether or not they were looking to buy. It was simply their desire to keep a finger on the pulse of the market. As I grew up, I loved the beauty in the design of houses and everything about property.

What are the biggest challenges you have faced in your career?
Within the first six months of the job at Kingaroy, my manager and mentor left the workforce. Admittedly at this time I had very little life and real estate experience. To say that I was thrown in the deep end is an understatement.

Every day, I made and learned from my mistakes. It was a humbling experience that has helped shape me. My personal goal in my first year of real estate was to become an agent that stood out from the rest in my town. At the end of my journey in Kingaroy, I was one of the top three local agents after only one year in the industry. It soon became apparent to me that Kingaroy was no longer challenging me; the competition was not competitive, the pace a little slow and I became restless. It was time for a change.

After that first year at Kingaroy Real Estate, at the age of 21, the owners of the business approached me to take over. Despite this unique opportunity in front of me, I decided to follow my gut feeling and curiosity and go to Brisbane, so I handed in my notice to leave. I will forever be grateful for the stepping stone that Kingaroy Real Estate gave to me in this industry. They gave me a chance when others would not have done.

So my next challenge was being unemployed but very eager to kick-start my new adventure in Brisbane. I shadowed every agent who would allow me and networked with them to find my next venture.

When I met Simon Caulfield, I knew straightaway that I’d found someone I would enjoy working with. It wasn’t easy to get Simon’s attention and I was very persistent in order to secure a job with Place .

What do you love about being an agent?
What I truly love is being a part of my client’s journey. I have the privilege of helping people buy or sell their valuable assets. Plus meeting new people every day is also very exciting.

I also thrive on pushing myself to my limits, working the long hours and making some personal sacrifices in order to get ahead of the pack. Doing whatever it takes to be successful.

What is unique about your agency and team?
Place Estate Agents opened its doors in New Farm in July 2010. Director Judy Goodger compiled a first-class team of top real estate agents to ensure that the New Farm office continues to uphold the incomparable Place standards while always increasing its presence and stellar reputation.

Servicing the surrounding suburbs of the Inner North of Brisbane and beyond, the New Farm team offers a high quality of service that you can always count on when it comes to Place. Like all Place agents, the New Farm team is always adapting with the trends while providing the same first-class marketing that Place is known for.

What’s the best advice you’ve been given?
Find people who are smarter than you, and learn everything you can from them.

Do you have a mentor, or someone who inspires you?
My source of inspiration lies in our team’s lead agent, Simon Caulfield. I admire and respect what he has achieved at his age and hope that I can accomplish similar successes by that time in my life. I have the privilege of working with Simon and learning from him. If I had to choose someone else outside the team who inspires me, it would have to be Fredrik Eklund from Million Dollar Listing New York.

Do you have a favourite sporting team or holiday destination?
I am a huge sports enthusiast. There is very little sport that doesn’t interest me! I’m currently following mostly soccer (EPL), NRL and golf. Unfortunately my NRL team (Titans) hasn’t been doing well for some time. But what can I say? I love an underdog!

Any predictions for the industry this year?
I believe that the Brisbane market may become more challenging in 2017.

Our team at Place Real Estate has worked really closely with a number of developers. I anticipate that whilst the developments are getting approved there will be a time when the supply simply outweighs the demand.

What advice would you give someone starting out?
Do not give up. If it’s something that you want to do, figure out a way and go for it. Do your homework and find a mentor, not an agency. The key is persistence; if you give up, you never truly wanted it.

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Samantha McLean

Samantha McLean is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of Elite Agent and Host of the Elevate Podcast.