Virtual offices to gather pace as cost pressures climb

Simon Parker

Agency principals may need to take a scalpel to their expenses and embrace new efficient business models if they are to sustain growing cost pressures in the year ahead.

“In most markets there is at least some degree of fee pressure and I would see that this is likely to increase rather than decrease, certainly when the general economy has some pressure on it,” professional real estate marketing and communication consultant, Julie Ryan, told Real Estate Business.

“Unless we become efficient as a real estate practice, than as an industry we are certainly facing some real problems.”

Ms Ryan, who recently spoke at National Association of Realtors conference in California, said Australian principals should take note of how US offices have become increasingly focussed on becoming more efficient post GFC.

Agents in the US are now adjusting their business model to adapt to a more efficient online “virtual office”, and this trend is expected to gather momentum in Australia, Ms Ryan said.

“An example of that is the whole debate that is at least starting around virtual offices,” Ms Ryan said.

“How much space do you need, are they really going to take off, is there such a thing as a part time or virtual agent, could that fit in with our business model?”

“How I see it is, if we don’t embrace more efficient business models than as an industry we are going to further and further pressured."

Simon Parker

Agency principals may need to take a scalpel to their expenses and embrace new efficient business models if they are to sustain growing cost pressures in the year ahead.

“In most markets there is at least some degree of fee pressure and I would see that this is likely to increase rather than decrease, certainly when the general economy has some pressure on it,” professional real estate marketing and communication consultant, Julie Ryan, told Real Estate Business.

“Unless we become efficient as a real estate practice, than as an industry we are certainly facing some real problems.”

Ms Ryan, who recently spoke at National Association of Realtors conference in California, said Australian principals should take note of how US offices have become increasingly focussed on becoming more efficient post GFC.

Agents in the US are now adjusting their business model to adapt to a more efficient online “virtual office”, and this trend is expected to gather momentum in Australia, Ms Ryan said.

“An example of that is the whole debate that is at least starting around virtual offices,” Ms Ryan said.

“How much space do you need, are they really going to take off, is there such a thing as a part time or virtual agent, could that fit in with our business model?”

“How I see it is, if we don’t embrace more efficient business models than as an industry we are going to further and further pressured."

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