It might be April Fools’ Day, and the biggest joke that we can play is directed at those who believed that the property market in Mosman was as flat as a “Bobby Dazzler” tax policy announcement. With our first quarter in 2005 now completed, it was off to the deal book to see how we faired and as predicted a record first quarter !! In the same quarter for 2002 we did seventeen sales to a value of $23 million, in 2003 twenty sales to a value of $30 million, in 2004 it was just twelve sales to a value of $18 million. Drum roll ……….. in 2005 thirty six sales to a value of $52.400 million !! Plus, we have another $10 million in property awaiting exchange so you can now be the judge on the current state of play. When we sit back and look at the major factors that led to this increase, it does not take long to work it out.

The move into our e-business was without a doubt our most significant and five years on we have a substantial database of buyers. The star performer for the quarter was Richard Simeon who amassed $25 million in sales. It is interesting to note that he gives credit to the Domain North deal with the 10 x 2 advertisements in Saturday Domain, as it obviously attracted more buyer enquiry which in turn was moved to the database. When we update the recent sales we now have passed the magical $300,000,000 in sales to subscribers which again identifies that our system works wonders in what is often described as a difficult market. Last week, I mentioned that we were starting to see some gazumping coming back into the market (although one subscriber e-mailed me accusing me of trying to talk the market up). Well, last Friday we had offer and acceptance for a property in Beauty Point at $2.800 million and a few hours later, the property was exchanged for $3.135 million.

The landscape of running a real estate agency is constantly changing and there are now so many facilities that enables us to monitor buyer activity. In January, our monthly Internet hits were 315,287, in February they jumped to 552,798 (second highest just short of the record 575,510) and in March it was 533,166 which confirms the strong enquiry levels for property. The strong movement of enquiries from buyers who prefer the electronic method of monitoring property, continues to increase. Probably, the greatest concern for our industry is the number of agencies who continue to ignore the powers of a successful online business. For many who chose to ignore it, they face an uphill battle as now they are forced to try and understand it. Secondly, they are faced with implementing it, which in turn means a capital injection of funds.

We now have three weeks to tidy up the properties that missed selling over the first quarter and with school holidays coming up, our next full launch will be on April 27 in Domain North where we already have ten pages of homes signed up. By that time, the market should be pretty-pumped up due to a forced lay off of homes. These interruptions actually reinforce the market which is why we remain confident that the June quarter will be just as positive as the April quarter.

In the twelve months to 28 February 2005 the average price for a home in Mosman dipped just three per cent to finish up at $1,856,000 and apartments fell one per cent to finish up on $568,000. The interest rate increase last month has had little to no affect on our niche market, and by all accounts it appears that a further increase next month is only a remote possibility.

Make no mistake, the market is onwards but not upwards. All we hope, is that the dynamics remain constant and should that be the case, we anticipate that our niche market will have a positive 2005. Until such time as we notice market conditions change, we will remain confident and positive. Naturally, we anticipate a few speed humps along the way which only adds a bit more fun to the journey. If you are still not convinced that our results are a true reflection of the Mosman market you are 100% correct, because (if you had not already noticed) some are doing it harder than others! Cheers ^__^

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