Thursday 17 Nov 2011
November 17, 2011 – McGrath Estate Agents will follow up its successful entry into the ACT with plans to open two new franchise offices from which it will be able to service the greater part of the Canberra region.
The first office that opened last week, McGrath Woden, will target the established areas of Tuggeranong, Weston Creek, Woden Valley and Queanbeyan in NSW as well as the dynamic growth areas of the Molonglo Valley while McGrath Dickson to be opened early next year, will concentrate on the blue chip suburbs of inner north and south. There are also plans for a satellite office to McGrath Dickson in Manuka.
John McGrath, Chief Executive of McGrath, said the new offices would be opened as part of a carefully considered and strategic roll-out of premium franchises offices in the ACT. McGrath Estate Agents, one of the most highly recognised boutique real estate brands in Australia, opened its first Canberra office at Gunghalin in February last year.
“We first opened in the ACT confident that we could leverage our strength in Sydney for the benefit of our Canberra clients,” said Mr McGrath. “What we have seen over the past 18 months is a strong flow of buyers between Sydney and the ACT and some extremely encouraging sales results.”
In recent months more than $50 million in sales from three development projects have been generated in the ACT through the collaboration of McGrath Projects, headed by Steven Chen, with McGrath Gunghalin. At the Aurora, the first waterfront development on the Kingston foreshore with interiors by BKH, 60 of 68 apartments have sold to a mix of local and Sydney buyers. The Cox Architect designed 2913 terraces are 70 per cent sold while the first stage of the apartments, targeting investors, are nearing 50 per cent. Said Mr McGrath: “The ACT represented our first interstate venture beyond NSW and the reasons for doing so remain as sound as ever. From the outset our target was to establish three premium large scale offices and we’ve been prepared to bide our time until we had selected the franchise partners who were best suited to join our network.
“In that time we have gained valuable insights into the market and a better understanding of its unique characteristics.
“Without doubt, Canberra is one of the most exciting real estate regions in Australia at present, having survived better than any other capital the GFC in terms of median price growth and rental demand and yield.
“Disposable income is 13 per cent higher than the Australian average, unemployment is lower and the population forecasts suggest a growth rate of around 15 per cent. Add to this major new land releases on the southside, which will be serviced by McGrath Woden, and the future prospects look very bright.”
McGrath Woden will be headed by franchisees Greg Ward and Cameron Whitnall, both of whom have consistently ranked among the LJ Hooker network’s top performing agents. The office will open with a staff of eight, servicing a territory that includes Tuggeranong, Weston Creek, Woden Valley and Molonglo Valley in the ACT and Queanbeyan in NSW.
Said Mr Whitnall: “Canberra is the only city in the country where real estate volumes are tracking above the five year average. On the south side there is a steady turnover of quality homes and apartments across the price spectrum, from $250,000 to well over $1 million.
“In addition, land releases for major development in the Molongo Valley will see the creation of 13 new suburbs, less than 10 km from the city.”
Canberra’s rapid price growth has recently stabilised, rising 1.9 per cent in the year to June against a rise of 6.6 per cent over five years.
“All the fundamentals exist in Canberra to support substantial population growth and business development,” said Mr Whitnall.
“It has first class infrastructure, from broadband telecommunication to its road, rail and air links and a young, vibrant and growing population which is expected to increase by around 15 per cent within the next decade.
“The southside will reap the benefits of much of this growth which will add substantially to the desirability and popularity of the region.”
Located at 42 Townsend St, Philip, McGrath Woden will include sales and property management and a mortgage broking service through Oxygen Home Loans. Phone: 6124 2500