oc | Tuesday 21st January

In some sections, the market hiccuped a little today

Great home, great campaign, great quoting, great result! Rob Vickers Willis and Hugh Hardy manage 3 bidders to $3,100,000 under the hammer at 237 Coppin Street Richmond.

Great home, great campaign, great quoting, great result! Rob Vickers Willis and Hugh Hardy manage 3 bidders to $3,100,000 under the hammer at 237 Coppin Street Richmond.





At 6 pm the James Clearance Rate was 73% on the 30 auctions we covered. Bidderman dipped to 2 bidders per auction. With a lot of stock on offer, we interpret these stats as a hiccup, more so than a radical change – but nonetheless a change could be on – see our references to B and C graders below.

It’s James Market News lite today as we lead into the Easter holidays.

Key Points:

  • More Pass-Ins than in previous weeks.
  • Fewer Volcanoes – (but maybe the bidders were just spread thin on such large auction numbers).
  • Drop in Bidderman – (but maybe the bidders were just spread thin on such large auction numbers).
  • Prices are still increasing, not decreasing on A graders.
  • Prices on B graders are mixed – a sign the market may be fragmenting – which is a symptom of a changing market.
  • A number of C graders are not being sold and haven’t been now for several weeks – another sign.
  • Geographically the market felt its strongest in Inner East and then a little weaker as you drifted down through Stonnington and then slightly weaker again as you got to the Bay. What does this mean? Not much on one weekend’s stats.
  • Things will be a little quieter in April with two lots of holidays; so May is the market’s next test.


  • We were involved in 7 auctions today with 5 successes.
  • Bidder numbers at the auctions we were at, meant we only saw a strong market.  East – 3 bidders. – 4 bidders. Richmond – 3 bidders. Richmond – 3 bidders. Hawthorn – 4 Bidders. Bentleigh – 3 bidders. – 3 bidders.
  • So for us Bidderman on really good homes was still over 3.

James Buy-Sell

Apart from our James Buyer Advocacy services – James Agent Selection Service was involved in two sells for existing buying clients today. Both successful.

The first one at 237 Coppin Street, Richmond (Hugh Hardy and Rob Vickers-Willis of Abercrombys) was a professionally run campaign with the selling agents selected (through our process) communicating to the vendors fairly, we believe communicating to all buyers fairly, putting it on the market fairly and getting the job done at a level they said might happen, if all things went well. All things went well. Quoted buyers in excess of $2,700,000 – on market at $2,850,000. Sold under the hammer at $3,100,000 – 3 bidders.

The second James Agent Selection for clients was at 1 Royal Crescent, Armadale ( and Mark Harris of ). The agents communicated fairly to the sellers in the interview process, quoted to buyers fairly (saying “buyers indicated to them early $4m’s; but the home was assessed at in excess of $4,500,000 and across the road sold for $4,750,000”). On the market at $4,750,000 and sold under the hammer at $4,850,000 – 3 bidders.

Not everything runs as smoothly as both of these campaigns – but if the agent selection process is right – the communication is open and honest to sellers and buyers; then it is possible to get very fair, very strong results without quote misrepresentation – if you engage good agents. Well done Justin and Mark and well done Rob and Hugh.

Please note – if you as a buyer felt anything different on either of these campaigns, please contact us on 9804 3133. All selling agents selected by James Agent Selection Service are contracted to quote fairly to buyers and sellers alike, while of course trying to maximise their client’s (the sellers) outcome.

Great home, great campaign, great quoting, great result! Justin Long and Mark Harris manage 3 bidders to $4,850,000 under the hammer at 1 Royal Crescent Armadale.

Great home, great campaign, great quoting, great result! Justin Long and Mark Harris manage 3 bidders to $4,850,000 under the hammer at 1 Royal Crescent, Armadale.


HAWTHORN, 26 Linda Crescent (Steve Abbott, Jellis Craig) – Under Hammer $5,000,000, 3 Bidders.
The crowd was ushered into the sizeable front yard for the auction of this Federation Queen Anne residence in Hawthorn.

ARMADALE, 1 Royal Crescent (Justin Long, Marshall White) – Under Hammer $4,850,000, 3 Bidders.
Despite it being a dismal Saturday afternoon, a large crowd of some 110, come to view the auction of this c1888 residence.

, 8 Boyanda Road (Andrew Hayne, Marshall White) – Under Hammer $3,013,000, 6 Bidders.
Andrew Hayne is in fine form today. On offer a solid brick c1925 period home on 929sqm of , drawing a crowd of 90, as the sun finally decides to play ball.


, 21 Marquis Street (Damien Davis, Jellis Craig) – Under Hammer $1,910,000, 4 Bidders.
A tree-lined street with impeccable homes and gardens forms the backdrop for the auction of this 1930s weatherboard home.

HAWTHORN EAST, 11 Broomfield Road (James Tostevin, Marshall White) – Under Hammer $1,370,000, 4 Bidders.
A slightly smaller than expected crowd gathered on this lightly drizzly and cooler autumn morning for the auction of this quaint single-fronted Victorian cottage in Hawthorn East …

KEW, 34 Uvadale Grove (Doug McLauchlan, Marshall White) – Under Hammer $2,460,000, 4 Bidders.
On a chilly Melbourne morning auctioneer Doug McLauchlan and agent Stuart Evans  wanted to get this one underway quickly to avoid the oncoming rain.


KEW, 87 Sackville Street – Passed In $4,500,000, 1 Bidder. Has since sold.

, 54 Were Street – Passed In $3,000,000, 0 Bidders.

EAST, 19 Bates Street – Passed In $3,000,000, 2 Bidders. Has since sold.

49 Sandringham Street Brighton passes in on a vendor and lone bid at $2,800,000

49 Sandringham Street Brighton passes in on a vendor and lone bid at $2,800,000


So you want to be a great homebuyer negotiator. The main man or women. The bloke or sheila calling the shots – The Governor – The Big Cheese – THE BOSS!!

Look at the pictures below and consider – who is in the best position – to be those – to negotiate well?

In Picture One – The Agent’s Interrogation Office. Is the lead negotiator the bloke being interrogated, the lady interrogating or the guy directing the interrogation from afar?

Who is making the best decisions here!

The guy under pressure or the guy with some breathing space?

If the lady was the selling agent, would you as a buyer, be in a better position to make good decisions, if you were the man with the cross or the man with the tick?


The Agent’s Interrogation Office

In Picture Two – The Auction Battlefield. Is the guy making the real negotiation decisions on the hill or in the trenches with the mud and guts? When agents are pressuring you, throwing curve balls at you, testing you with claims and counter claims about other buyers – would it not be better for you, if your negotiation team was taking the hits and reporting back to you – thus giving you a physical buffer and quiet time, in which to consider your responses.


The Auction Battlefield

In Picture Three – Big Picture. Is the real man in charge directing the action or face to face in the action. Who is best placed to see what is really happening in the Big Picture? Who can see all angles – the players or the director.


The Big Picture

Many homebuyers feel they are best equipped to lead negotiations for their family.

And you know what, in some cases they are probably right.

But the smart homebuyers and the best family negotiators are the ones wise enough to engage a professional to assist – to take the hits for them along the way, so as they can consider their options in a less pressured environment – so as they can lead the negotiations well.

Good negotiations come less often when you are under pressure compared to the cool light of day. How do you create for you the “cool light of day”?

Create a buffer.

The really smart negotiators engage a team of professionals, a team like James Buyer Advocates (9804 3133) to support them, to carry out the 100+ tasks associated with sensible home buying due diligence and to provide a range of money saving/making options, alternatives and recommendations for them. Sellers do (when they choose well) – so why don’t all buyers?

Poppycock you say! Then tell us – at your work, how many say $100,000 negotiations you enter without a team, planning meetings and a professional peer reviewed strategy? How many? None, you say! Yet, for buying a home worth twenty or thirty times more than a work deal you adopt the “she’ll be right” “anybody can do this” and “what could possibly go wrong” – let’s wing it mindset.

An initial talk with a James Buyer Advocate, before you enter an agent interrogation or an auction battlefield could produce some wonderful left field ideas and it’s free, gratis, no obligation.

Dear Simone and Craig,
So sat with a glass of Shiraz as adrenaline now subsided and reflecting on a job well done by all I think. You’ve done a brilliant job as a team to get us into this position in a matter of a few days; there is no doubt we would not have even been at the races today if we had not called you. You called it just right in terms of strategy. We now get to forget about 6 months of house hunting or 18 months of construction, at a price we would take every day of the week. We are very happy. I will absolutely take credit for realising I didn’t know what I was doing and had the sense to call! Enjoy your weekends and pass on my thanks to the rest of the team. 

Glen Iris

If you want to be the best negotiator you can be – then I/we suggest engaging some professional back up – get a James Buyer Advocate (9804 3133) to support you.

Source of pictures in article: General www search – maybe subject to copyright.

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Goals v Principles

I normally try and stick to my knitting and only comment on the property market; but as we go to a break I will make an exception on what is seemingly becoming a national malaise.

Lack of business leadership – we have it within our industry and it manifests itself through over and underquoting.

In other industries, we have seen it at the sharp end – in wages at 7/11 – in both financial planning and insurance connected with the Commonwealth Bank and  …. so on and so on.

Business and quite possibly capitalism may have lost its way, as the best method to benefit the individual and the community.

Self interest that serves the self and the community, has been taken over by self interest that serves only the self. The conundrum is that self interest only, ultimately does not best serve the self.

Companies are no longer vehicles that serve customers and the community from which its owners take money from  – they are moving to vehicles from which its owners simply only take money from – they have cut out the middle man (the reason for their existence) – there is seemingly now, no in between step – you know, the giving bit.

What once was society’s definition of criminal – an act that benefits one, but hurts another – has become blurred.

Those rising up the corporate ladder are being taught through “business hero” books, through osmosis and ultimately through positive reinforcement within the company structure – that the only thing that matters, is the very hollow and fleeting immediate ROI.

The beauty of client and community service, has been replaced by the beast of dollar service. When was the last time we read a media article on great service, happy client – is it no longer newsworthy or no longer seen as representing good business practice?

Principles have been lost to blind goals and in particular the insidious growth goal.

The celebrations are no longer about the job done and the deep satisfaction one feels from a happy recipient – no, the cheering is all for that inane exceeding of an impersonal growth goal by whatever means.

A goal and in particular a growth goal is, by its very definition is a corner cutter; a quality destroyer; a dangerous underlying tumour on all businesses and also on meaning within our society.

An aggressive dollar growth goal ultimately destroys the balance between the company and the customer, the balance between the co-worker and the family, the balance between the firm’s output and the environment.

As we go to a break, be it a religious one or not for you – what about your goals? Do you need a little re balance to include the 4C’s – company and co-worker – community and client?

How about setting a really good growth goal – I want to better serve the customer and the community and in many cases myself (less work and more family)?

How about this for a goal? I want my children to actually learn that good business leads to a meaningful and healthy life; not good business leads to a life of worry and lack of meaning. My son has started with me and this has forced an evaluation from me.

I am not perfect – I am a work in progress.

For the more emotionally mature in business, why not consider moving from goals and the slavish worshipping of the paraphernalia attached to them; like budgets and bonus dollar targets – to principles of client, company, community and co-workers service in some sort of balance and harmony.

This little concept is what real corporate leadership is about. It will need a redefining of what is better – but you’re smart enough to work through that.

Self interest is Ok, in fact it’s one of the things that drives us all – whether its Muhammad or Buddha or the more recent Mother Teresa – by one definition they all lived a life of self interest – its just that their beautiful lives of self interest were not at the exclusion of others needs and wants – their lives were about others needs and wants.

But this is not about religion – or is it – is business now our new religion?

If it is, then the true leaders of business may well take a leaf out of their books about leaving a legacy; about building sustainable models, about replacing goals with principles – ones that serve the shareholders and the directors – but also ones that serve the clients, the co-workers and the community.

The true leaders of business are you and me – not somebody else.

Just some thoughts. Enjoy your family,

Mal James
Easter 2016



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