Career as a Commercial Agent

Jun 26, 2017 8:00:00 AM Share this:

A career as a commercial agent is not for everyone, and it requires a very specific combination of skills. Education (preferably a background in economics, finance or commerce) and the ability to work quickly with numbers and analyse data are essential. Commercial agent positions are best suited to multitaskers who enjoy working in a fast-paced environment with a variety of people. Interpersonal skills, dedication to customer satisfaction and persuasiveness are all important.

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Topics: Commercial, Agent Life, Careers

Overcoming the fear of public speaking

Jun 19, 2017 8:00:00 AM Share this:

The power of being able to speak in public or before a small group is underestimated. No document or meeting can impact like a presentation or powerful speech.  What good is knowledge without being able to share it? What good is desire to influence people if you can’t inspire them?

For many people, the thought of having to speak in public terrifies them.

I love this quote from the book “The Psychology of Winning” by Dennis Waitly - “Winners risk being a fool in the eyes of their colleagues.” 

There are only 5 things you need to remember about speaking to an audience : 


It is not enough for the content to be important to you - it must be relevant and of value to your audience. Profile Your Audience. What do they already know and what do they need to know? 


You cannot teach or present on that which you don’t know thoroughly or don’t have first-hand experience in. One of the most powerful tools in a presentation is to tell stories of your own personal experiences. 


The opening should be arresting – grab their attention. Memorise the first 2 or 3 lines of your speech so that you can stand and deliver your opening powerfully.

The main body of your speech should be no more than 5 to 7 key points. Each point can include information, pictures, video or stories to illustrate the particular point or message.

Lastly, summarise the key points of your speech and close with a memorable ending. This could be anything from a funny video, a picture or a meaningful statement. 


The number one rule is to be your self, authentic and conversational, but “Be yourself magnified!” Enunciate clearly and speak from the stomach rather than shouting from the throat

Try lowering the pitch of your voice a little. If you use “um” a lot then try shortening your sentences and use silent pause.

Share eye contact with all across the room, not just the friendly. Lock for 3 – 4 seconds then move to someone else. 


The day you are not nervous is the day you do not care about your audience. There is nothing worse than an obviously memorized word for word speech and the danger if you forget a word or sentence is that it can totally throw you so that your nerves take over. 

  • Rehearse the full presentation the day before and memorise the first 2 mins
  • Blood to brain not to stomach –“Full stomach = empty head”
  • Be early and prepared
  • Monitor your inner monologue – positive thoughts only
  • Mingle 20 mins prior. It will break the ice
  • Find a friendly face to start
  • Once you get started you will be fine as you begin to focus on your message. 

Know your material then speak naturally to bullet point notes or visual prompts. If your content is great and you are passionate about what you want them to know, then fear will melt away as you get absorbed in delivering your content.

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Topics: Agent Life

More loadshedding might influence property market

Jun 12, 2017 8:00:00 AM Share this:

The recent announcement by Eskom chairman Ben Ngubane that South Africans can expect power cuts this winter unless the National Treasury urgently signs purchase agreements so Eskom can build up its coal reserves once again highlights the demand for homes powered by green energy.

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Topics: Loadshedding, Property Markets

The age of information is a real estate opportunity

Jun 5, 2017 8:00:00 AM Share this:

Modern times are evolving so rapidly that businesses and individuals alike are having to continuously analyse their practices and strategies to ensure they stay ahead of the game. This is especially applicable to the real estate industry which has seen an array of local and international factors influence how everyday business is conducted.

For one we've seen how our customers are becoming a lot more informed. They have access to statistics, technologies and information at the click of the button that can display a plethora of current, relevant data on the market their home is located in. Banks, bond originators and the media release information almost weekly on the trends of the industry, identifying the demand areas as well as informing consumers on the pros and cons of certain investments empowering the man on the street. This is fantastic!

Therefore it is crucial that real estate companies have extensive internal training structures of the highest standard in place to ensure they are equally if not more informed than their clients, that they are able to identify trends in their specialist areas before they even occur, that they can confidently offer clients accurate insights into the transaction and have the answers to the tough questions.

When these programmes are in place the evolution of the market does not intimidate your business but rather excites you at the possibilities.

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Topics: Technology, Evolution of real estate

Top 10 mistakes made by first time investors

May 29, 2017 8:00:00 AM Share this:

1. Doing it alone 

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Topics: Investors

5 tips for a healthy work-life balance in the demanding world of real estate

May 22, 2017 8:00:00 AM Share this:

As a sales consultant, it is important to know when to say “when”, and to maintain a balance that ensures you sustain your health and personal life,  as well as your passion for real estate!

Being a sales consultant in the real estate industry can be challenging and demanding.  Between juggling clients and family, friends and a social life, you can easily wind up in a position where your life feels overrun by the demands of your career.

Here are five quick things you can start to embrace to help you achieve a healthy work-life balance:

1) Schedule Your Personal Time

Holidays, school runs, health appointments, date nights with your spouse, and children’s sporting events should all be assigned into your schedule.  Ensure they are as non-negotiable as realistically possible.  A good rule of thumb is to never reschedule the same appointment twice.

2) Control Your Time

Communicate to your clients a realistic time you will be able to make an appointment or return their call or email.  Consider altering your voicemail and email greetings, letting people know how and when you will make contact.

3) Team Up To Reduce Your Workload

If you find yourself running out of time at the end of the day or you are constantly chasing your tail, consider taking on a partner, or a personal assistant.   Having a partner enables you to share weekends, evenings, and holiday periods.  Hiring an assistant will alleviate some of the more time-consuming tasks such as marketing administration and social media, freeing up more of your time for bigger tasks.

4) Make The Most Of Our Tools Provided

Harcourts agents have many tools and support services available to them to help keep in touch with clients.  Harcourts Email Subscriptions allow you to subscribe your database to automatically receive any of our newsletters and publications as soon as they are published; The new iPad and iPhone App (eOne) is a low-stress way to manage your contacts, providing reminders for your tasks (such as birthdays and anniversaries), and allows you to track any conversations ensuring you recall all client interactions.  Make life easier for yourself by utilising these valuable tools.

5) Find Time To Disconnect And Unwind

Track your time over the next few weeks and take note of which time periods are the slowest.  If there is a particular day where there is little activity, consider taking this day off each week.  If a day off is too much at this stage in your career, break it into smaller slices of time that are manageable and fit in with your commitments.  Disconnect yourself from your phone, the Internet, and anything else that is work related and build “me” time into your schedule.

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Topics: Balance, work, Tips for Agents

Petrol price hike's effect on the property market

May 15, 2017 8:00:00 AM Share this:
Recent data from the Department of Energy pointing to a petrol price hike of around 55 cents a litre, and diesel costs increasing by approximately 39 c/l has a definite influence on the economy. Despite the property market being seen as a long term investment and to a large extent resilient to short term economic fluctuations the rental market can often be susceptible to market instability and price hikes.

We've seen trends in the past where a continual rise in the petrol price undoubtedly influences the demand for rental homes closer to the CBDs, school districts and other popular amenities.

Often consumers can find themselves in a price pinch as the knock on effects of the petrol price increase influences food prices and other goods and services. This translates into the man on the street having to tighten his belt and reduce costs as expendable income is reduced. Because transport costs are linked to so many sectors fuel costs has an effect on a wide variety of consumer expenses.

Demand in the rental market is often a reflection of many different factors and not solely as a result of the economy. New estates, expansion and growth of a region, urbanisation and semigration are all factors that influence tenant requirements.

It is wise to do your research and consult a specialist rental agent that is able to offer sound insight into the market so that your decisions are guided by knowledge and expertise as opposed to an emotional knee-jerk response to a regular economic cycle.

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Topics: Rental Market, Fuel price

How long it takes to sell your home in South Africa’s 5 major metros right now

May 9, 2017 6:47:17 PM Share this:

New FNB data shows the average time homes are currently on the market for across South Africa’s five major metros.

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Topics: Selling your Home, fnb


May 1, 2017 8:00:00 PM Share this:

While relaxing and enjoying good times at your favourite holiday location, you stroll past the local real estate agent’s window and browse the offerings.
Imagine, staying regularly or living in the same place where you have so many great memories. Imagine owning a property where time seems to stand still, and where enjoyment is the longest lasting impression.
For many people, buying an investment property in their favourite holiday destination presents a double dose of benefits – the chance to regularly enjoy the best of holidays and build wealth at the same time. Such a property can also represent the ideal retirement destination, or somewhere to treat family and friends with affordable holidays in the meantime.

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Topics: Investment Property, Holiday Home, Festive Season Tips

Why choose to hold open homes when selling?

Apr 24, 2017 8:00:00 AM Share this:

Open homes are one of the most effective ways of marketing a property and attracting interest from a wide variety of buyers. Some of the many advantages are:

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Topics: Selling, Open Homes, tips