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Are analysts the unsung heroes of real estate?

By Orana Durney-Benson
11 July 2024 | 11 minute read
Diaswati Mardiasmo reb

With unique insights into local and national property markets, research analysts are the brains behind many powerful networks.

For the past 10 years, Queensland-based real estate brand PRD has invested significant resources in training up a new generation of property research analysts.

The network partnered with the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) to give economics students real-world experience in property analysis.

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According to Dr Diaswati Mardiasmo, chief economist at PRD, this investment is integral to the health of both the network and the wider housing economy.

“Property economics cover so many different facets of the property industry – from economics, real estate transactions, valuation, construction, and many others,” said Mardiasmo.

“Having extremely sophisticated and high-level expertise analysts provides a real estate network an edge over the others.”

Most in-house research analysts have a goal of equipping their agency with “the most complete, comprehensive data possible, in order to build knowledge and trust with the public”.

Having a robust baseline of knowledge assists the agency in “winning listings, clients, landlords, and establishes a reputation of a real estate business that is backed by sophisticated data analysis”.

Many would-be analysts struggle with finding roles that allow them to put their skills into practice.

“Not every property economics student will be interested in research. Some would like to be a developer, buyer’s agent, sales agent, work for the government, etc. The challenge is to figure out what is your area of passion within property economics, and find the relevant pathway to get to your dream job,” said Mardiasmo.

For the students who come through the PRD internship program, their time at the agency is an invaluable opportunity to test the waters and find their niche.

“You are exposed to multiple clients and their research needs – whether it’s media outlets, government clients, developers, industry peak bodies, banks, and many others.”

“This can assist in figuring out whether you want to work in a research field, or as a developer, or within a government organisation,” said Mardiasmo.

For the chief economist, fostering a new generation of qualified analysts will have a wide ripple effect across the entire property industry – in residential real estate, and beyond.

“Having a strong base of property research professionals allows for the possibility of better decision-making, one that is based on accurate data and high-level analysis in multiple disciplines and industries.”

“Ultimately, this will benefit the public and society in general,” she concluded.

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