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Why this agent made the move from city to regional markets

By Bianca Dabu
17 May 2021 | 1 minute read
Yvonne Campbell

With more buyers seeking opportunities outside the capitals, agents have now been joining the flight from metro to regional markets, leaving behind the city for country towns.

Yvonne Campbell has spent several years building a diverse career in Sydney, where she worked as a property editor for multiple companies and real estate franchises, including Cumberland Courier Newspaper, realestate.com.au and Domain.

As the property market undergoes a significant shift post-pandemic, so, too, did Ms Campbell.

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From Newcastle, she made the move to Nimbin, where she has purchased a cattle farm and began working as an agent within @realty’s OASIS system.

@realty’s OASIS, or Online Agency Support and Integrated Systems, allows boutique real estate agencies and sole operators to access @realty’s national database and administrative services, while still operating under their own brand.

According to Ms Campbell, the switch to rural living and, consequently, to OASIS has allowed her to focus her strengths on building her own business — Leafy Lane Real Estate.

“Being with OASIS has allowed me to create my own brand which resonates with the local area, yet still have the benefits and efficiencies of a national company in the backend. I can concentrate on what I do best,” she said.

“I think, now more than ever, people want to be able to relate to people — and that’s where the strength in individual branding works.”

Through her brand, she aims to speak directly to the buyers of Nimbin, who are seeking the “opposite of corporate”.

“[Nimbin] is about the beautiful environment. Everywhere you go is a leafy lane. For someone who spent years watching her home city of Sydney turn into an overdeveloped urban jungle, that is special,” she said.

As part of her personal branding, Ms Campbell said she foregoes corporate suits and traditional real estate colours for earthly tones that say “leafy lane”.

“It sounds cheesy, but it is individual and that is what I wanted,” the agent quipped.

Moving forward, Ms Campbell intends to leverage on @realty’s technology to provide the best and most relevant products and services to her clients.

“More than ever, real estate is a technology business. As a principal, if you are not across technology, then you are simply a dinosaur and, in my view, cannot justify a claim to offer the best service in today’s world,” she said.

Nimbin’s potential

Moving from city to country has allowed Ms Campbell to earn a deep appreciation of what rural buyers are looking for — what she called “the escapist’s dream”.

According to her, Nimbin has just the right property fundamentals to satisfy the rising demand for properties that offer a good combination of lifestyle and income.

She said: “Nimbin has all the property fundamentals, incredible self-sufficiency lifestyle opportunities, income potential, stunning natural beauty and a clever community with a clear, social conscience.

“Nimbin has just come of age, and it is certainly representative of the current trend towards the regions.

“But it is not just a COVID-driven phenomenon here — the real appeal is the community, which is very inclusive and accepting.”

Over the past four years, Ms Campbell said that Nimbin property prices have doubled, mainly due to demand from Baby Boomers who are cashing in their city homes for an alternative retirement.

“That demand has seen around 80 to 100 properties change hands annually over the past few years. Given the small number of properties available, that is probably not sustainable going forward and, in 2021, a shortage of listings has certainly been representative of that,” she said.

“The reality is very little land locally is being subdivided to satisfy the increased demand, so with the shortage of stock, I expect pressure on prices will continue.”

Why this agent made the move from city to regional markets
Yvonne Campbell reb
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