Reflecting on the successful sale of his own mother’s home just last week, The Agency’s Group CEO has revealed to REB why agents from both his own network and McGrath Estate Agents were entrusted with the transaction.
The story of The Agency Group CEO Geoff Lucas’ mother’s Darling Point unit made waves last week when it sold for almost $2 million above the reserve price — just two days after it had been listed by Mr Lucas.
On the Thursday night, the three-bedroom unit was listed with a price guide of $4.8 million to $5 million.
By Saturday evening, it had sold for a whopping $6.55 million.
The sale was made possible through the teamwork of The Agency’s Paula Simoes and McGrath Estate Agents’ William Manning.
Of his choice to involve agents from both networks, Mr Lucas said: “In my recent sale, I knew both agents professionally and was aware their skills would complement each other greatly.”
He also revealed he had made “a personal commitment” to Will Manning as one of the lead agents from his time as CEO of McGrath.
“Having recently commenced as Group CEO of The Agency and witnessed Paula’s work and recent results, it was evident she had the momentum in the luxury eastern suburbs market to deliver this result with Will,” Mr Lucas said.
Reflecting on the speedy result, Mr Lucas said the combination of the two professionals “was a pleasure to be involved with”.
He said: “Many thanks again to Paula Simoes and Will Manning on behalf of my family and I.
“It was an exceptional experience and a great example of what can be achieved by two professionals working in sync maximising their exceptional skills.”
The case for co-agency
Acknowledging that such a strong result “speaks volumes for a well-structured co-agency”, the CEO of The Agency told REB that it’s not unusual to have agents from competing networks come together to work on transactions.
“With the right combination of talent and professional experience, they can sometimes bring out the best in both agents to deliver for the client,” he said.
In his experience, “the best results come when there’s a healthy professional level of respect between the agents”.
He advised: “There are a number of aspects to the transaction that have to be considered, discussed and agreed to. This needs to be done openly, transparently and up front. When this is carefully planned and agreed upon, they can work very well.”
It can also be seen as “a wonderful opportunity for agents to learn — both good and bad — as they get to see the methods of people they wouldn’t otherwise get to work with”.
On the flipside, the CEO did offer up a warning: “If not properly structured, I would not recommend it.”
Emphasising that such arrangements need to be carefully thought through and planned, Mr Lucas added that “a vendor needs to be absolutely certain of the working relationship and the strengths each agent brings”.
Corporate leadership at the coalface
Not only did the transaction deliver the CEO’s mother a tidy profit — she had purchased the unit off the plan in 1995 for $1.55 million — but Mr Lucas has revealed he relished taking on the sale on her behalf, as it provided him with “an important opportunity to gain first-hand experience of every minute detail in the real estate transaction”.
“In leadership of organisations, it’s really critical to be in sync with what’s happening at the coalface,” he reflected, adding that he has always adopted the practice of getting up close and personal in property transactions.
“A good friend of mine, John Borghetti, the ex-CEO of Virgin, used to spend an inordinate amount of time in the cabins of his aircraft — engaging with customer and crew alike — as did his very popular successor, Paul Scurrah.”
From Mr Lucas’ perspective, not only does this build a great culture, “it also ensures the leader knows what’s happening at the customer transaction level”.