Chapter News

From one auctioneer to another

McGrath Estate Agents Auctioneer and REINSW Auctioneer Committee Chair James Pratt recently interviewed Jesse Davidson from auctionWORKS to ask his perspective on the marketplace and how auctions fit into the Western Suburbs selling market.

James Pratt (JP): Tell us a bit about the areas you have been auctioning in this year?

Jesse Davidson (JD): The Western Suburbs is where majority of my work is done, however I do work in some parts of the Eastern Suburbs, a little bit of the Lower North Shore and sections of the Inner West.

JP: Can you give us a rundown of these areas?

JD: It was around June last year that I started to notice a change. As of June, interest rates were low and people started to get a heads up that the property market was starting to move, especially considering the year we had previously. As that period went past, the last couple of months of the year were incredible.

Moving into the start of 2014, I didn’t think we were going to continue at the same pace, however early February proved me completely wrong. Our auction results were the best they have ever been. March right through to April and May were great months.

Our auctions results are definitely picking up, but I think the most important thing to mention is the increase in prices. Guildford has seen a fair bit of movement, Parramatta is still very strong, and the Inner West has been consistently strong in the last two years - probably the highest performing market in Sydney. I have seen some substantial movement in these areas.

JP: I’m interested to hear how you have changed your auctioneering techniques and style to keep up with the market?

JD: When I started auctioning, I trained with David Scholes on how to deal with one-bidder auctions, because five-years ago the market was significantly tougher than it was now.

How have I adapted that style overall now? I have definitely noticed in the past 24 months that I’ve had to adapt to a significant amount of foreign buyers, so while still continuing to create the urgency that is required at an auction, you also need to have the ability to stop and give people enough time to make their decision. Acquiring that patience and understanding could give you another $2,000-$5,000 for the seller.

JP: And finally, what makes a good auctioneer?

JD: I think the most important thing is being able to build an immediate rapport with both the vendor and purchasers. You spend such a short amount of time with both parties; therefore the ability to build a relationship quickly is essential.