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Harcourts Australia – a year of strong growth

15 June 2015    

As one of the nation’s fastest growing real estate groups, Harcourts Australia has experienced a massive year of expansion, with 53 new locations signing on in the past 12 months to March this year.

The group has grown by more than 15% over the past year, with more openings planned across Australia throughout 2015.

South Australia, in particular has posted some significant results for the brand. Harcourts SA recorded its second best sales month in its 10 year history in South Australia.

Harcourts SA General Manager Andrew Friebe attributed the strong local growth to several key reasons including a more confident market due to low interest rates and steady growth in median house prices.

The group’s level of innovation and corporate support to teams is also a critical factor and is something that sets the business apart from many of its competitors, he said.

“For Harcourts, being across the latest developments in relevant technologies is a priority. We’ve made significant advancements in this space this year, adopting the cloud-based Microsoft 365 product suite for business owners and their corporate offices, launched new responsive website and introduced two new industry-leading apps for agents and property managers to give us the edge.

“The past year has seen some great results for us, and I believe conditions are right for continued growth throughout the year. There is definitely more buyer confidence out there at the moment, and we are starting to see more business owners take advantage of the times, by opening a new office, or growing their existing base.’’

One of those to take advantage of the Harcourts backing, has been business owner Jonathon Kiritsis, who has been operating in real estate for 20 years under another brand.

He moved his business over to Harcourts in March and has just opened Harcourts Kiritsis in new office space at Henley Square.

“We’ve been a family business for 20 years,’’ Mr Kiritsis explained. “Now under Harcourts, we plan to more than double the size of our local team of seven to 15 over the next 12 months.

“Harcourts always seemed to be ahead of the rest and when I began discussing plans with my parents for my takeover, Harcourts was the stand out on so many levels, including reputation and the level of corporate support.

“We are looking forward to a really strong year. It’s very active down here at the moment with interest rates being so good and a lot of good movement.’’

It was a similar story for Harcourts Tagni director, Jarrod Tagni whose family has been working in southern suburbs real estate for the past 30 years.

“This has been a family business run by my father Tony and my brother Ernie and I have been involved for the past 20 years, based at Aberfoyle Park,’’ he said. “An opportunity came up with Harcourts and we grabbed it and felt it was a way for us to grow.’’

And that’s just what has happened, with the team of 30 agents and property managers now also operating an office at Happy Valley.

“We moved across to the Harcourts brand in October last year and doubled in size overnight. It’s meant that we have expanded our core area from Happy Valley, Aberfoyle Park and Flagstaff Hill and into the Morphett Vale region.

“For us it’s proved to be a good decision and things are going well.’’

Just slightly further south, experienced team Sandy Mount and Andrew Kitchen have also recently opened an office in McLaren Vale to focus on the special Wine Coast region.

In more positive news for the state, Harcourts announced plans in April to introduce the commercial and retail arm of the group, NAI Harcourts to South Australia.

Mr Friebe the group felt now was the time to have a local presence in the commercial and retail property space.

“The commercial property market in South Australia, and Adelaide in particular has been pretty flat for a while, but with a few key infrastructure projects in the works, I think that’s set to change,” Mr Friebe said.

“Extending our offering to provide local expertise in the sale and management of commercial and industrial properties will further strengthen our ability to meet our community’s property needs locally, so we see our involvement in NAI Harcourts as a positive contributor to the region and for our business.”

NAI Harcourts is the result of a partnership between commercial real estate specialists NAI Global and real estate group, Harcourts International, and now has franchised offices in 75 locations across Australia and New Zealand.

The group is celebrating picking up a prestigious global award in Las Vegas, after winning the International Member of the Year Award at the NAI Global Convention at the Paris Hotel in February.

NAI Harcourts took out the top spot for positively promoting the brand, and for its growth, leadership and relationship building within the group.

NAI Harcourts Chief Executive Officer, Richard Laery, said the award recognised the growth of the NAI Harcourts brand over the past 12 months, and the attractiveness of the Australian economy for business investment.

“We’re very excited to be recognised by NAI Global, it really goes to show that the brand is on an upwards trajectory and we’re seeing more interest in NAI Harcourts each year,” Mr Laery said.

Harcourts International now has over 790 offices in eight countries, including 361 offices in Australia.