May 13th, 2013

Heel-Clad Agents Raise $30,000 to Stop Violence

walked a different path last Friday as they joined forces with White Ribbon Australia to make a stand against violence at the inaugural Walk a Mile in Their Shoes march.

Over 250 people, both men and women, donned a pair of high heels and walked a mile along the Southbank Spillway to Melbourne’s City Square. The driving force behind the campaign was CEO of Harcourts Victoria, Harcourts Victoria Sadhana Smiles, who is one of only a handful of female CEOs in Australia’s property industry.

“When we started on this journey, our goal was simple, as one team, in one voice, to make a stand that violence of any type towards anyone is simply not ok. We have achieved that,” said Sadhana.

It was Sadhana’s passion for making a difference that lead to this worthwhile partnership with White Ribbon Australia, which helped to raise over $30,000 for the cause.

“Violence exists …

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May 8th, 2013

Rates Slashed to Record Low

Posted in: Announcements

In a surprise announcement by the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) earlier this week, official interest rates were reduced by 25 basis points, taking the cash rate to a record low of 2.75 per cent.

The RBA’s decision has no doubt come as a relief for mortgage holders across the country.

As well as offering reprieve for Australian home owners the RBA’s decision to cut rates signifies a positive step forward for the country’s property market and wider economy.

Given the current challenges facing Australia’s property market, the RBA’s decision to cut rates was the best possible outcome.

Although we have started to see some positive data come out of the property market, Australia’s housing industry is yet to fully recover from the effects of the Global Financial Crisis.

I believe that the latest cut to interest rates will encourage renewed consumer spending and should increase buyer activity within the …

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May 7th, 2013

Paul Wilson Presented with Prestigious Roy Weston Medal

Posted in: Harcourts News

One of the most significant members of Harcourts Western Australia, Paul Wilson has been honoured with the prestigious Roy Weston Medal in recognition of the contribution he has made to the organisation.

One of only a few honoured with the Roy Weston Medal, Mr Wilson is the Licensee and Director of Harcourts Victoria Park, one of the region’s oldest and most established real estate agencies.

“A quintessentially old fashioned Australian, Paul’s honesty and integrity is beyond reproach. He is incredibly passionate about doing the right thing and putting people first,” said Jenny Birrell, CEO of Harcourts Western Australia, in an opening address.

“Paul is driven by the personal growth and development of others. He loves to see people in his team succeed and often pushes people outside of their comfort zone in order for them to achieve greatness.

“A much better coach than a player, Paul believes in hard work, …

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May 2nd, 2013

Sadhana Smiles Launches People Power

Posted in: Harcourts News

Sadhana Smiles, Chief Executive Officer, Harcourts Victoria, officially launched her first book earlier this week – People Power: Did You Have Them At Hello.

Focused on attracting and retaining quality staff, People Power is designed to help leaders in all industries understand recruitment and aims to teach people how to manage, engage and coach employees for maximum performance.

“Finding and keeping good people is the key to business success but it is also one of the biggest challenges for leaders,” Ms Smiles said.

“The different generations in the workplace create further challenges for managers as a one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t work.

“People Power explores these themes and offers practical information on how to manage the recruitment process from attraction to long-term retention,” Ms Smiles said.

People are the lifeblood of any industry and so a focus on attracting and retaining the very best talent is vital for any leader. Sadhana’s insights …

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April 24th, 2013

Lex Heinemann Joins Landmark Harcourts

Posted in: Harcourts News

Landmark Harcourts has added another string to its bow by announcing the appointment of Lex Heinemann, one of Australia’s top rural sales people, earlier this week.

Mr Heinemann, co-founder of Ray White Rural, will work alongside Landmark Harcourts CEO, Darren Cole, in the role of Director of Rural Growth across Queensland and the Northern Territory.

Bringing deep experience and an exceptional depth of knowledge, Mr Heinemann will drive recruitment and sales for the group’s north east division, as well as strengthening corporate and institutional relationships, and developing receivership work.

“Having Lex on board is a real coup for Landmark Harcourts. Given his enviable reputation in the industry as well as his extensive knowledge and contacts, I have no doubt that he will make an outstanding contribution to our network,” Mr Cole said.

Mr Heinemann has specialised in rural property sales for over 40 years and has been involved in sales …

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April 23rd, 2013

Harcourts NSW Makes a Big Change

Posted in: Harcourts News

Harcourts NSW has made big changes by officially re-branding its Dougmal Harcourts offices to Harcourts earlier this month.

The move brought Harcourts New South Wales’ Dougmal-branded offices into line with the group’s more than 780 offices internationally.

Rob Forde, Chief Executive Officer of Harcourts New South Wales, said the decision to re-brand the group’s Dougmal offices was made to strengthen the network and encourage brand consistency.

“Harcourts has a very powerful network across the globe and branding which is instantly recognisable.

“Our aim for the Dougmal Harcourts rebrand is to really capitalise on these factors and add further strength to our group in New South Wales,” Mr Forde said.

Colin Roberts of Harcourts Northern Beaches stated, “Harcourts has really brought their expertise in marketing, technology and training to the table. They have certainly excelled in this area and we look forward to incorporating this into our day to day business”.…

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April 22nd, 2013

Harcourts Victoria Report Strong First Quarter

Posted in: Harcourts News

Harcourts Victoria have had a strong start to 2013 with year-to-date auction numbers increasing by 12 per cent across the state.

In some of the group’s offices, the number of auctions booked has increased by 20 per cent compared to this time in 2012.

Sadhana Smiles, Chief Executive Officer of Harcourts Victoria, says that a sense of optimism is returning to the state’s property market.

“We are starting to see more buyers in the market and investor activity is increasing.

“12 months ago there were only small groups at auctions and many properties were being passed in. We are now seeing clearance rates hovering between 65-70 per cent, clearly showing that buyers are back in the market,” Ms Smiles said.

“From our observations, buyers are starting to realise that the market is competitive again. We are starting to see more and more properties being sold under the hammer, often above …

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April 17th, 2013

Harcourts Victoria Walks a Mile Against Violence

Posted in: Harcourts News

In May, Harcourts Victoria will be walking down a different path and joining forces with White Ribbon Australia to make a stand against violence, launching the inaugural Walk a Mile in Their Shoes event.

The group is urging both men and women to don a pair of high heels and join the parade as they walk a mile along Southbank Spillway to demonstrate Harcourts’ commitment against violence.

“As well as demonstrating our commitment against violence, we’ll be displaying our commitment to embracing women in the quintessentially male dominated real estate industry,” said Sadhana Smiles, CEO of Harcourts Victoria.

The concept was developed by Ms Smiles in association with her team and the group’s franchise council, and is based on a similar walk done in Canada.

“Unfortunately violence exists in our work places, families, communities and schools, and it is not just physical but verbal and emotional violence,” Ms Smiles said.…

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April 16th, 2013

Innovative Young Achiever Honoured in Victoria

Posted in: Harcourts News

Earlier this month, Daniel Flynn was presented with the inaugural Harcourts Leadership and Innovation Awards at the 2013 Victorian Young Achievers Awards.

Sadhana Smiles, Chief Executive Officer of Harcourts Victoria, presented the award to Mr Flynn at the event which was held at Etihad Stadium with over 330 guests in attendance.

The Harcourts Leadership and Innovation Award recognises young people who, through their leadership, innovation and drive, are paving the way for others to follow.

Mr Flynn is the Founder and Managing Director of “Thankyou Water”, which exists for the sole purpose of funding water projects in developing nations. Mr Flynn and his team met with numerous bottling and packaging companies, finally securing a donation of 30,000 bottles from Visy.

When a national distribution deal was secured, the new social enterprise “Thankyou Water” became a reality. The team have now contributed to 58 water projects in Cambodia, Myanmar, Kenya, Uganda …

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April 12th, 2013

Landmark Harcourts Report Record Sales

Posted in: Harcourts News

Landmark Harcourts has reported its second strongest quarter on record in terms of settled sales.

“We continue to be our own hardest markers as we continue to build momentum in building Australia’s best regional and rural real estate business,” said Darren Cole, CEO of Landmark Harcourts, in relation to the firm’s results in the January to March period.

“Our performance over the past year has been solid, with a year-on-year uplift of 32 per cent.

“To put this into context, two of our largest competitors reported declines of 11 per cent and six per cent respectively, whilst Herron Todd White – the national valuation firm – reported a national rural sales volume decline of 45 per cent in 2012, year-on-year.”

71 per cent of the network’s volume for the year was made up of rural property, with the remainder coming from growing regional residential and lifestyle sales, and property management …

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