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Why reverse engineering works for Trelease Associates

Delve into the history of Trelease Associates and you’ll quickly discover a progressive buyer’s agency committed to doing things differently.

The Sydney-based agency may have only opened its doors in 2018, but it has swiftly developed a reputation for simplifying, protecting and improving the property buying journey for its clients.

While a reputation this solid may seem unusual for such a young agency, it attributes its success to a steadfast ethos of turning the usual buyer’s agency model on its head and dedicating itself to “reverse engineering” the traditional way a newcomer would enter the industry.

From the beginning, Trelease Associates Chief Executive Officer Daniel Trelease had a clear vision to create an agency that immediately felt as though it had been around for decades, promising its clients discretion and attention to detail in the property purchasing process.

Mr Trelease says his launch strategy included in-depth consultation with industry partners to ensure their service model was ideal right from the start.

“During the strategic development phase of Trelease Associates in 2018, I called on past clients and referral partners, primarily from financial institutions, legal and accountancy firms, to ask one simple question: ‘What would you like to see in an all-new buyers agency?’” he says.

“It was this question that facilitated my vision, forming the foundations and building blocks for our value system, our approach to recruitment, even our long-term business structure.

“Most notably, how we would build a team of diverse individuals who displayed compassion, empathy and unwavering local knowledge built from an innate passion for property, without the typical overriding ego.”

While many new businesses may opt for a traditional growth timeline that follows a ‘grow small, invest, grow small, invest’ model, Trelease is different by design, electing to go big early and back themselves to produce exceptional results immediately.

The day the agency opened its doors, it already had referrals from partners, and to take a tour of its NSW Head Office in Double Bay was to step inside an office space that felt as though it belonged to a long-established group.

That’s precisely the way Mr Trelease and Chief Operating Officer Jeremy Bedwani wanted clients to feel visiting the space – comfortable and confident they were in the best hands.

“Right from the word ‘go’, with the oversight of Chief Financial Officer, Jacqueline Clow, we chose the best office location and ensured all of the initial investment in our structures, teams and processes were top-notch,” Mr Bedwani says.

“We had a lot of supporters and people in our networks that wanted to work with Trelease Associates immediately.” 

While many new businesses establish themselves one department at a time, another thing Trelease did differently was the inclusion of a property management arm from day one.

“We didn’t have to take a ‘slowly does it’ approach’,” Mr Bedwani says.

“We backed ourselves, our team, and we worked relentlessly.”

That work ethic also helps Trelease Associates stand out, with Mr Trelease noting that the team’s ability to network and produce happy clients has meant they haven’t had to do any marketing to generate business to this point.

He says their clients also love their focus on discretion, confidentiality, transparency and accountability.

“Every client in the first two years was organic from word of mouth referrals within our network of real estate agents – even other buyers agents, mortgage brokers, wealth managers, financial advisors, accountants and so on,” Mr Trelease says.

Testament to the agency’s success is the recent opening of two offices in Mosman, with offices in the South Coast Illawarra, Byron Bay, the Sunshine Coast and Brisbane to open later this year.

The team has grown from just two to more than 20 in just a few short years and much more to come.

But Trelease isn’t secretive about its business model, culture and values but, rather, is more than willing to help others find their footing in the industry. 

“We’re not shy about helping competitors, Mr Bedwani says.

“The more people that use buyer’s agents, and have good experiences with professional, ethical and experienced buyer’s agents, is only going to help the industry as a whole.”

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Kylie Dulhunty

Kylie Dulhunty is the Deputy Editor at Elite Agent.