At the REB Awards 2021, Kate Smith, business owner of Harcourts Smith, in Semaphore, South Australia, was named the Sales Agent of the Year – Metropolitan. The awards annually recognise the outstanding contribution of professionals and businesses working within the industry, including agents, networks, innovators, leaders and property managers.
“Doing what you love and being acknowledged on a national platform is an absolute honor and just makes all the long days and challenges worth it,” said Ms Smith after winning the award.
“I have to give a big thanks to my team, Samantha, Teagan and Ricki, and also my husband for giving me the support to do what I need to.”
Noting that the past year has been challenging for everyone, she shared her key for thriving personally and succeeding in the marketplace during those times.
“I took on an adapt or die mentality,” said Ms Smith. “So, just trying to keep ahead of the curve and changed at all times and doing the things you don’t always feel like doing when you know you should!”
It is no coincidence that Ms Smith was the top listing agent in Australia, in 2020, which also gained her recognition on the REB Top 100 Agents ranking.
The team at Harcourts Smith has grown its number of listings and sales month on month.
“We are so incredibly lucky to be in a market that has risen and grown above all these challenges,” said Ms Smith. “We have such an amazing quality of life and I think that was showcased to the whole nation during COVID-19, and now the demand from interstate is part of that feeding into the market.”
As part of its continued expansion throughout Victoria, leading real estate franchise network Harcourts Group Australia has announced the opening of Harcourts Coburg in the greater Melbourne, Victoria region.
Harcourts Coburg business owner Louis Saba brings a depth of experience in the Coburg region gained over the past six years. Mr Saba’s professionalism and dedication to providing the community a high level of client experience shines with the partnership with the Harcourts brand.
“The diversity in residents and shop owners are what makes Coburg so unique,” said Mr Saba (photo). “I love the bustling, busy vibe of Sydney Road and surrounds, it feels so alive. I grew up here, so I have a sense of nostalgia as I walk through the streets; it feels like home.”
Victoria Franchise Development Manager David Silcock said Coburg was identified as a key expansion area for the franchise group. Adding that it was fantastic to now have a presence in what was once considered a ‘bridesmaid’ suburb, those suburbs that home buyers tend to look to when they are getting priced out of the neighbouring “bride” or go-to suburb.
“With the new infrastructure such as the sky rail and entertainment amenities, we are seeing fewer people commuting into the city, and the benefits of being able to purchase a bigger space and live in a place that’s much greener, like Coburg and Fawkner, are really attractive.”
Mr Silcock said identifying quality agents to operate under the Harcourts banner in these areas was imperative to any new office’s success.
“We’ve identified quite a few growth areas in Melbourne, and regional Victoria where we want to find and establish excellent local agents and Louis is certainly someone we wanted on our team,” he explained.
“Louis’ reputation precedes him as being honest and straight forward with his vendors and buyers. He has a contagious energy and is known for always going above and beyond client’s expectations.
“Having someone with Louis’ deep knowledge of the area and proven track record is a real coup for our brand.”
Mr Saba explained his decision to join Harcourts was simple. “I decided to join Harcourts because of its long-standing impeccable reputation in the market and their professionalism throughout the whole onboarding process. It feels like family.”
“The Harcourts value of ‘People first’ resonates with me most, as I have always considered myself a people’s person. For me, it’s not just about making the sale; it’s about building long-lasting relationships with my clients and guiding them through the entire sales process. Selling your home can be a stressful time; my goal is to make my clients feel at ease.
“Watching people find their first home, the happiness and joy it brings them, this brings me great satisfaction.”
Following on from the recent appointment of industry heavyweight Lisa Pennell in the role of Chief Operations Officer for Harcourts Australia, the group has announced another key strategic hire in another newly created role. Adrian Knowles is set to join the group’s Australian executive leadership team as Chief Executive Officer of Growth following his resignation from Ray White this week.
Off the back of an exceptional period of growth where Harcourts has become one of the leading real estate franchise groups after just two decades, Harcourts Group Australia has appointed Lisa Pennell to the newly created role of Chief Operations Officer, Australia.
Harcourts Group Australia has announced the expansion of its auction training and support program. Key appointments to the newly formed Harcourts Auctions division are Christian Hamilton, who was promoted to Head of Auctions Australia and Sam Hinshelwood in the role of National Auctions Operations Manager.
With real estate markets across Australia currently rebounding strongly from a global pandemic, in particular in Western Australia where house prices have jumped 1.2% in just the last month (February), leading real estate franchise network Harcourts Group Australia has moved to expand its footprint in the state.