by Ray White Group joint chairman Brian White
Ray White’s June result of just missing $3.8 billion almost broke the record, set just the previous month, of $4 billion. These figures in winter months? Winter is a time for hiatus in the property market isn’t it?
Our tradition has been to break records in spring and summer and hold on during winter as spring marketing campaigns start to build. But there is an urgency in the markets today that we haven’t seen in most careers.
Yet there are some interesting observations. The first is the continuing power of the big cities. Sydney, Melbourne, Auckland and, increasingly, Brisbane lead the way. A sobering note is reflected in the current market in Perth. Just a year or so ago, Perth was in full flight, but the dramatic reversal in the resources industry has clearly had an impact on confidence and jobs in that State, reflected in a market nowhere resembling its eastern state cousins.
As we mentioned, it is the big cities that are thriving and, within those cities, it’s the markets closest to the city centres that are leading the charge. Auckland’s inner city group produced almost 40% of the total New Zealand result.
Ray White offices such as Double Bay in Sydney are now reaching close to $100 million sales per month, with an ambition to have a $1 billion year within their sights.
Nationally, Loan Market had lodgements of $1.064 billion in June, bringing the total for the financial year to over $10 billion for the first time. New records were set with approvals of $784m and settlements of $683m.
Loan Market NSW achieved a record month with lodgements, approvals and settlements up nearly 50 per cent on the same time last year. Overall state figures for NSW saw lodgements come in at over $327.7m, approvals at $247.6m and settlements at $221.2m. QLD also had a strong month with over $160m in settlements, setting a new record.
Activity in the non-residential markets remained strong as a remarkable financial year drew to a close. Investment auctions remain a standout, with 100% auction clearance rates not uncommon as vendors capitalise on strong investor interest.
New projects releases, particularly in Sydney and the Gold Coast are receiving continued support. Ray White’s office in Hong Kong is continuing to sell across the nation, including excellent results from Melbourne.
On the Ray White Rural front, the Australian cattle market has experienced the most significant rise in living memory over the past six months to the extent that most players in the industry have never witnessed prices like we are currently receiving. This is due to its previous decimation of herd sizes.
What’s New at Ray White? A key event is the official visit to Australia this week by key executives from CCPIT – the outward investment arm of the Chinese Government. Reflecting our relationship, these executives have met key members of the Ray White group, particularly those involved in major investment and site acquisitions.
The ‘Portfolio’ magazine – designed exclusively for CCPIT members – is ready to be sent to its huge database. In it are features of the Australian and New Zealand property market, including a first class array of investment opportunities. A long held dream to be relevant in China is quickly coming to pass!
As evidenced by these initiatives, reaching buyers in China continues to be a key focus. This month, we launch raywhitechina.com.cn which will take listings across the group to this important market, while further strengthening the presence for the Ray White brand.
It’s no surprise that office openings are continuing at some pace. Reflecting the driving inner city markets, Ray White’s new offices in Spring Hill and North Quay in Brisbane have opened and look absolutely spectacular. The same is happening in Sydney with new offices in Darlinghurst and Ray White Laurieton and Ray White Circular Quay all up and running.
In the non residential sector, the remarkable activity of Ray White’s Hotels division was a standout. Andrew Jolliffe and Joel Fisher completed an extraordinary 14 hotel sales in 10 weeks for over $150m, all within New South Wales.
Loan Market has launched its new branded mortgage product, Loan Market Go, in partnership with Advantedge Financial Services. Broker, Nick Gray achieved the first Loan Market Go settlement in June.
It’s now less than one month until the Group’s “Connect” conference to be held on the Gold Coast. We have already sold out, with 2,000 delegates attending. A dramatic presentation of a range of topics is all designed to assist members in the group to understand the broader range of opportunities that can now be presented to their clients. Real estate careers are changing – no longer is there just a singular opportunity but, increasingly, group members can participate in much broader and wider ranging ambitions of their clients. This has been reflected in some great individual achievements.
Ray White has taken further steps into the Chinese market, after hosting our first exhibition in Beijing over several days in June. The exhibition was a great success resulting in several sales and a great way for Ray White to introduce valuable projects to Chinese investors.
Head of China, Marcus Ng, along with Ming Rose from Ray White Projects and Seiko Ma from Ray White China were instrumental in the success of the event.