The Elephant in the Room Property Podcast | Australian real estate
The Elephant In The Room Property Podcast with Veronica Morgan & Chris Bates


Episode 14 | How carefully crafted price conversations get properties sold | Marnie Seinor, McGrath Coogee

What is the difference between manipulation and influencing buyers?

Have you ever wondered about the conversations agents are having with the owner about price? What about other buyers? Marnie Seinor, sales agent at McGrath Coogee, reveals her discussions throughout an auction campaign, week by week. She didn’t stop there, also giving insights into:

  • Best times to sell and buy in the beaches market.

  • Strategic questions for buyers to ask agents in an auction campaign.

  • What buyer “feedback” means & what offers agents will disclose to other buyers.

  • Why underquoting still exists despite underquoting legislation.

  • Tips for buyers for working out which agents to trust.

  • The best time to make a pre-auction offer and clues that you are the only buyer and should wait for auction.

This episode uncovers yet more “insider operations” that every buyer should be aware of.

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Veronica Morgan
Episode 13 |What's an "honest liar" in real estate and when will they be no more? | Ewan Morton, Mortons

Plus: The two key things you should look for when buying an apartment.

Ewan Morton pulls no punches on why agents do the wrong thing and we have a bit of spirited debate about the pros and cons of buying new apartments. This energetic conversation traverses two very contentious issues and there are loads of revelations:

  • Agents no longer hold all the information but it’s not a bad thing.

  • How agents have been punished for telling the truth by vendors.

  • His dialogue for telling vendors “as it is” when they should take an offer.

  • The secret to getting more money out of buyers.

  • How he gets buyers to trust him and why buyers should disclose info to agents.

  • Changing attitudes to apartment living and the debate about oversupply.

  • What’s with the quality of new builds?

  • The important things to research before buying a brand new apartment.

Another cracker episode, Ewan does not hold back!

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Veronica Morgan
Episode 12 | The big disruption about to shake up real estate agents | John Cunningham, Cunninghams & REIA

John Cunningham is a respected name in the estate and he is currently spearheading the Pathway to Professionalism program across the country. He brings surprising insights into what’s wrong with the real estate industry and why agents have no choice but to embrace change. We talk about:

  • How will agents provide advice even though only the vendor pays them?

  • The skills gap in agents across Australia.

  • The small percentage of agents he thinks are able to become professional

  • Is Purple Bricks really a disruptor?

  • What this unregulated market costs buyers.

  • Why buyers make mistakes, what they’re doing wrong.

The future looks bright for some but not all agents. This is one very interesting interview, especially for buyers and sellers who’ll want to be able deal only with professional agents.

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Veronica Morgan
Episode 11 | Can buyers ever win from being honest with real estate agents? | Michael Harris, Raine & Horne Newtown

What really makes prices go up? (Hint: it’s not the agents…)

Sales agent and principal Michael Harris reveals the challenges real estate agents face when having price conversations with both vendors and buyers. It seems not everyone is ready to face the truth. Other revelations in this episode include:

  • What makes a good property and what “rubbish” property looks like.

  • Presentation tricks used by vendors.

  • The biggest frustration agents have with buyers.

  • The impact of credit tightening and why inner city home owners are staying put.

  • Different types of pre-auction negotiation processes and when it’s best for a buyer to go to auction.

  • How to be taken seriously when you make an offer.

If you want to understand how the slowing market affects property in the inner city, you’ll need to listen to this conversation.

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Veronica Morgan
Episode 10 | How to ensure you're protected by your building & pest inspection or strata report | Michael Ferrier, Eyeon

Michael Ferrier joined us for a no-holds-barred talk about property inspections. What goes into them, what’s wrong with them and why you need them. He reveals some really important issues for property buyers:

  • The biggest warning sign to look for in a strata report.

  • The biggest major issue in new apartments & who is obliged to fix defects.

  • Why he lobbied against compulsory building & pest inspections in contracts.

  • The magic number of inspections a building inspector can do a day before the report suffers

  • The circumstances under which buyers are covered by pre-purchase reports and when they aren’t

Don’t rely on a pre-inspection report until you listen to this episode!

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Veronica Morgan
Episode 9 | How to sniff out a lemon in your property portfolio | Veronica & Chris chat

We all need to make smarter decisions around property now that we can’t get access to as much money following APRA intervention & the Royal Commission. In this episode you’ll learn:

  • Why the banks won’t lend you as much money as they used to.

  • The new impact of poor investments on your lifestyle.

  • The disposition effect and how it leads to selling the wrong property.

  • What locations and properties lose the most money when the market drops.

  • The secret to buying property that will survive a market downturn.

  • What the future holds for Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane & Perth.

  • The finer points you need to know when selecting an A grade investment property.

  • How to identify a “flyer”, “floater” or “flop” and when to hold or when to sell.

An entire episode dedicated to the juicy topics of debt, risk, the quality of assets, rewards of patience and planning for the future.

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Veronica Morgan
Episode 8 | How do skilled auctioneers get your last dollar? | David Scholes, AuctionWORKS

Auctioneer David Scholes candidly shares examples of buyers pushing themselves beyond their limits, the auctioneer’s role in getting them to do this and the extreme times when he actually stops mid-auction because a bidder is over extended!

Hear more about:

  • His frustrations with sales agents,

  • How smart agents will handle a situation when only one bidder is registered,

  • Why the reserve price isn’t important,

  • How he lures reluctant bidders,

  • What experienced bidders do to control an auction,

  • The real reason auction clearance rates drop in a transitional market,

  • The psychology of online property auctions and whether they will replace on-site/in-rooms auctions.

Experience counts: David’s observations on the past 5 Sydney property cycles will enlighten you.

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Veronica Morgan
Episode 7 | Are pre-auction offers really in a buyer's best interests? | Mary Anne Cronin, Phillips Pantzer Donnelly

The inside scoop on why more properties sell before auction in a slowing market.

Mary Anne Cronin, sales agent at PPDRE in Sydney’s Eastern Beaches, talks about buyer behaviour in her patch as well as sharing insights into the whole pre-auction offer process. Here’s what else we talked about:

  • The precise point in a marketing campaign where buyers lose interest

  • How she works both buyers and vendors in a slowing market

  • Meaningful questions buyers should be asking real estate agents

  • The decisions buyers need to make when trying to upgrade into a house

And we get the answer to that multi-million dollar question: why are prices so high in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs?

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Chris Bates
Episode 6 | Learn how to sort through property data and choose what's important | Kent Lardner, JLL Australia

Don't believe the hype! What property statistics can you rely on?

Kent Lardner is a “geek with a personality” and he tells us why knowing a little bit can be dangerous, largely because of the inconsistencies & nuances of data, of which most of us know nothing. In our chat we cover:

  • The trouble with median sales data

  • How agent bias can affect vendor price expectations

  • What goes into an AVM (automated valuation model), when they are used and why automated estimates vary so much from actual sales prices in Australia

  • Technological advances that might soon mean machines replace property valuers & real estate agents

  • Short term and long term indicators that predict capital growth

  • Tips for making an objective assessment of property value so you can work out what to pay

If you want to make better property decisions, this episode is a must-listen-to!

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Veronica Morgan
Episode 5 | The true cost of a lack of trust in the property industry | Shannan Whitney, BresicWhitney

Confessions of a sales agent; what the future holds and what needs to change.

This is quite a philosophical conversation with Shannan Whitney of BresicWhitney about the relevance of real estate agents in our changing world. We talked about many “elephants” and Shannan did not hold back on discussing:

  • How self promotion in the age of social media misses the mark

  • Where industry awards fall short and reward the wrong type of behaviour

  • How the accepted measures of success fail both vendors and buyers

  • How published price guides make agents accountable, which is why many won’t commit to them

  • What happens behind the scenes when a low offer is made

  • Decoding “agent-speak” with some handy translations

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Chris Bates
Episode 4 | How your emotions are targeted before you get to the open house | Kate Lumby, Lumby Hampson

The secret to influencing buyers when selling lifestyle properties.

Kate Lumby, sales agent, auctioneer and principal of Lumby Hampson in Sydney’s Hills District, reveals the performance art of property sales.

  • The props used by agents to “sell the dream”

  • Different buyer behaviour and the buyers who are their own worst enemy

  • Tips for becoming the favourite buyer of both the agent and the vendor and why some people get to buy a property for less money

  • How good agents lead a buyer to the negotiation table

This episode reveals all the little details that affect the way property buyers behave.

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Veronica Morgan
Episode 3 | What do real estate agents really say behind the scenes? | Matt Hayson, Cobden & Hayson

Matt Hayson, real estate salesperson and director of Cobden & Hayson gives insights including:

  • Different types of buyers and which ones get the best deals

  • The conversations top agents have with their vendors behind the scenes

  • Specific buyer influencing strategies used in a buyer’s market

  • Why some unscrupulous agents are good for buyers to deal with

  • The truth about pre-auction offers

  • How some vendors cost themselves a good sale price

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Veronica Morgan
Episode 2 | How successful auctioneers know when to push you to bid more | Damien Cooley, Cooley Auctions

Damien Cooley, probably Australia’s most famous property auctioneer, reveals some absolute gold:

  • How he reads body language and uses it to get buyers to make higher bids.

  • The signs buyers give that tell him they have more money

  • The circumstances when auctioneers actually want a low bid and why buyers should give them a high one

  • Some of the moral dilemmas he has faced at auctions

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Episode 1 | Who is really making the decisions when you bid at auction? | Simon Russell, Behavioural Finance Australia

Behavioural scientist Simon Russell shares a myriad of ways in which the auction process influences buyer decisions, without them even knowing it.

Simon explains how we humans are governed by our emotions, often despite our best intentions and often to our own detriment. When he attended his first property auction he saw clearly how the whole auction process is designed to tap into our hidden biases.

In this episode we cover ten biases in an easy to understand, conversational style. Essential listening for anybody who wants to have more control when they are bidding at auction. 

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Episode 0 | The Elephant In The Room: What’s this all about?

Welcome to The Elephant in the Room, where we'll talk about the things that nobody talks about...

Veronica Morgan, real estate agent, buyers agent and co-host of Foxtel’s Location Location Location Australia is joined by Chris Bates, financial planner, mortgage broker and wealth coach. Together They’re going to uncover who’s really making the decisions when you buy a property.

The elephant is a metaphor for the way our emotions often dictate our actions and the unbeknown to us, the elephant is often the one in control.

Each week we’ll get into the psyche of buyers, agents, auctioneers and other industry experts to learn the truth about why buyers do the things they do. The plan? To help us all make better property decisions!

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