Barry Plant Real Estate, a Victorian-based group with around 80 offices, has opened a new regional shopfront in Bendigo.
“As an investor who has previously purchased properties in Melbourne through the Barry Plant network, I was disappointed when I began investing in Bendigo a couple of years ago, to find I was unable to get the same standard of service here,” said owner Ben Williamson.
The Barry Plant Bendigo office will bring the total number of real estate agencies in the town to around 22, mainly ‘small, independent’ offices, but Mr Williamson said there is room for more growth.
“I am beginning with six full time staff plus the two directors, including sales manager Melissa Thatcher who has more than eight year’s local experience, plus a team of professional sales, property management, marketing and administration staff, and I intend to double that number over the next two years,” he added.
CEO Mike McCarthy said the company which has grown to include more than 80 offices across the Melbourne and Geelong regions, was seeing the benefits of regional expansion.
“Following the success of the Mildura office which we opened last August, it was only natural to look to extend the Barry Plant network further regionally and Bendigo is ideally placed for this expansion,” he said.
Investors were a likely target for growth, Mr Williamson said, based on reasonably stable and comparatively low house prices (around $290,000) and a tight rental market (one per cent vacancy rate).
He added that the Barry Plant Group’s exclusive ‘Sale by Set Date’ marketing strategy should suit the Bendigo market.
“Traditionally, auctions are not popular in Bendigo, however the ‘Sale by Set Date’ method of marketing a property provides an exciting alternative to private sales.”