PRDnationwide Newcastle/Lake Macquarie, which last month ranked fifth in the REB Top 50 Sales Offices rankings, has been eyeing Newcastle’s long-awaited urban renewal and will move the business to the top floor of a commercial building in the city’s East End to accommodate its recent growth.
Director and agent Mark Kentwell told Real Estate Business the "writing is on the wall” for window displays as PRDnationwide Newcastle/Lake Macquarie looks to go down a different corporate route with its new office space.
"What we’re looking to do is invite more people into the office, so they can get the office experience when they're in there,” he said, adding that a major factor in the move to the East End is that he believes the area is set to become Newcastle’s new corporate epicentre as part of a larger state government plan to revitalise the city.
"Buyers now are coming from relationships from databases, from multimedia sources, so people standing at the window and looking at what house they’re going to buy … I think that’s a thing of the past,” said Mr Kentwell.
He added that the new office building, which has space for over 65 staff, will allow the business to have an “in between space” by virtue of the piazza café area at the bottom of the building, where agents can meet with clients on neutral ground. “It can be a place for the initial point of contact,” said Mr Kentwell.
He believes some agents are finding it hard to let go of the shopfront displays, but really the "advantage of a shopfront is for people to say, 'look at us, we’re real estate agents. If you ever need a real estate agent, come and see us', more than it is to attract buyers to buy a property out of the window".