12 September 2019

Agency Profile: Four Walls Commercial

As the Principal and Director of Four Walls Commercial, a leading boutique commercial property agency based in Newcastle, Bobby Suminoski is one of the region’s leading commercial, industrial and retail real estate agents.

Established in 2006, Four Walls Commercial services the greater Newcastle area and the Hunter Valley, with offices in Newcastle and Maitland. Bobby and his team also partner with several longstanding clients with commercial properties on the NSW Central Coast.

With a strong desire to offer a truly personalised service to his clients, Bobby and his team provide specialist advice regarding all aspects of commercial property.

With over 25 years of commercial real estate experience, Bobby always knew he wanted to establish his own agency.

“After a decade or so working for a large international real estate brand, I identified a real need in the Newcastle market for a boutique commercial agency,” Bobby explained. “I wanted to offer a more personalised service for my clients and realised the only way to do this was to become a smaller and more dynamic operator.”

And it’s safe to say, Bobby has never looked back. As an independent agency, the Four Walls Commercial team has worked tirelessly over the last 13 years to build key relationships with developers, investors and other professionals active in the ever-booming local commercial property market.

“Newcastle has gone through an unprecedented rejuvenation in the last decade or so with new high-quality commercial developments around the harbour precinct and wider city,” Bobby said. “Billions of dollars are being invested locally, with Newcastle airport now the fastest growing regional airport in Australia. And as a regional area, we offer great returns for investors. There’s been a huge influx of people moving north from Sydney in search of a better quality of life.”

Consultative approach

So what’s been the key to Four Walls Commercial’s success? According to Bobby, success has been driven by a combination of expert local knowledge, relationship building and service excellence.

“I grew up in Newcastle and it’s a relatively small place,” he said. “Everyone knows everyone and our focus on relationship building has meant we’ve continued to grow largely from referrals and word of mouth.

“But what sets us apart is our genuine consultative approach. We make sure we listen to our clients and provide honest, accurate and sound advice. We always ask about long and short-term goals, whether investing or purchasing. And we structure our agency services accordingly.”

“I also think we’re successful due to our strong work ethic, our attention to detail and strict quality controls. These controls can be labour intensive, but they’re also a critical function of our business to make sure our clients get absolutely the best from us.

“We also have the latest systems in place to make sure we manage property proactively rather than reactively, with diarised management programs that overlap our CRM system and effective database filters to make sure we’re not sending out emails simply for the sake of it. Our clients only receive information that’s relevant to their portfolio or needs,” he said.

Industry best practice

As the Chair of the REINSW Commercial Chapter, Bobby is a champion for commercial real estate training and development for agents across New South Wales. Since 2016, he’s been working with REINSW to help strengthen training resources. He believes this involvement has also inspired the Four Walls Commercial team to do better, learn more and be the best commercial practitioners they can be.

“We’ve always invested a lot in training and development, but my role with REINSW has further elevated this as a priority and focus for the team,” Bobby explained.

“In all honesty, joining the REINSW Commercial Chapter has been one of the best things I’ve ever done. Commercial agents have very different skill sets to residential agents, with different needs when it comes to training. It’s therefore been very rewarding to help develop some new learning and development resources focusing on the commercial side of our industry.”

Team environment

On a day-to-day basis, Bobby is focused on building a positive team environment and this also involves giving back to the local community.

“We operate very much as a team,” he said. “Everyone’s accountable, but if there’s an issue we all work together to come to a resolution and come up with ways to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

“We have the usual rewards and incentives for our property and sales managers, and we also make sure we celebrate as a team with regular lunches and annual functions.

“We’re also committed to supporting our local community by raising funds for different charitable causes throughout the year, such as local sports teams, schools and community services. We don’t have a set program. We just like to try and give as much as we can to a range of groups.

“I think it’s really important to give back where we can, as we’re all part of such a wonderful local community,” he added.

The future

So what does the future hold for Bobby and his dynamic team?

“We’ve just been through a brand refresh to energise our marketing efforts and are looking forward to continuing to grow organically across Newcastle and into the Hunter Valley,” he said.

“Our Maitland office is relatively new, but there’s lots of potential in this market. In fact, Maitland is one of the largest regional cities outside of Newcastle. Our new agent up there has been working hard and has already had some fantastic success.

“We can’t wait to see what the next decade brings.”

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