Agent Summit 2H2015 Key Takeaways

27 July 2015


Key takeaways from the PropertyGuru Agent Summit 2H2015 

The recently concluded PropertyGuru Agent Summit was aimed to provide attendees with ‘building blocks’ for greater success for the rest of 2015. This was hopefully achieved through the keen insights of our industry gurus! Here are the some of the takeaways at-a-glance.


On selling in the government housing sector (EC & HDB Resale):


It is the duty of the agent to help their owner clients understand their priorities

It is important for an agent to understand the priority of the owner client. Is it their priority to sell or to take a wait-and-see approach? It is only through understanding their priorities that the agent can apply a solution for their client that would convince them that their priorities can be met OR that they are harping on the wrong ones. At the end of the day, a good agent will sit down with their clients and truly understand what they want out of the sale.


Understanding the ‘Sellability Factor’ of your owner client’s property is highly important

One of our speaker, Mr Lim Yong Hock, KEO of PropNex Realty, coined a term called the ‘Sellability Factor’. This refers to the chance of which a property can be sold, based on the ratio of a particular property against all other similar properties in the market. If an agent can grasp this and help their clients understand the ‘Sellability Factor’ of their properties, the agent can then better manage expectations, especially in terms of the owner client’s asking price.


On emerging overseas markets:


One of the key reasons for the popularity of properties in emerging markets stems from its affordability and lack of financial restrictions

Apart from obvious financing restraints (such as the TDSR) placed on Singaporean property investors on local properties, properties in emerging markets allows investors to purchase in cash, with its lower quantum value. Its affordability means investors can purchase in these markets without the hassle of refinancing their loans.


Currency exposure can be a doubled-edged sword when investing in properties in emerging markets

The fluctuation of a property in emerging markets can mean that even a loss-making property investment could end up being a profitable one should the valued of the currency of that particular country goes up. However, the inverse could be true as well. A profit-making property could turn out to be a loss, should the value of the currency of the country the property is situated in drops.


On the private residential market:


Rate of price decline in the local private residential market has slowed down

In his presentation, Mr Eugene Lim, KEO of ERA Realty Network, noted that if we were to compare the decline in price index between the first half of 2014 and that of 2015, there is a slowdown in this decline, with 1H2015 closing at a 1.9% drop compared to 2.3% for 1H2014. In fact, resale prices in June 2015 in certain sectors have increased. We are finally seeing a slight property price resistance.


One way to deal with the tight financing guidelines and to be more productive, is to first qualify your clients before showing them an appropriate property to purchase

Instead of showing your clients properties of which might be to their liking and criteria, an agent should now work the other way – to help their clients sort out their finances and understand the affordability levels. Only with this can an agent show their clients properties of which they can afford, thus increasing the agent’s level of productivity.


On the commercial market:


It is essential for an agent working the commercial market to know the breakdown of various sectors and the finer demarcations within these sectors, so you can speak the right ‘lingo’.

The commercial market can be divided into the following sectors and within these sectors, there are further demarcations:
Office: Grade A, B and C
Retail: Shopping Centres, Mixed Developments and Integrated Developments
Shophouse: Conservation Shop houses and HDB Shop houses (sold between ’91 – ’98)
Warehouse: 30yrs, 60yrs, 99yrs and Freehold
Factories: 30yrs, 60yrs, 999yrs, Freehold, Business 1 & 2, Ramp-up, Flatted and JTC industrial prepared land


The typical pitfalls faced by an agent working the commercial market can be easily missed if the agent does not pay enough attention to the finer details

There are problems that our speaker, Francis Tan, CIO of SLP Scotia repeatedly sees agents face. These are problems and pitfalls of which he feels agents can avoid by understanding contractual issues better. The key pitfalls he had listed stems from:
Knowledge of basic T&Cs of a commercial contract
Understanding of the concept of ‘Rent Free’ or ‘Fitting out period’
Being clear about ‘master’ and ‘sub-meters’ for spaces that are sub-divided



The PropertyGuru Agent Summit was held on 15 July 2015 and attended by over 400 agents keen to build greater success for their business for the second half 2015. Speakers and topics include:

• Finding success, selling in the government housing sector (EC & HDB Resale)
  Lim Yong Hock, KEO, PropNex Realty

• Overseas properties and the increasing popularity of emerging markets explained
Sarah Nicholson, Head of Int’l Proj. Marketing, CBRE

• Tips to closing more deals in the private residential sector
  Eugene Lim, KEO, ERA Realty Pte Ltd

• How is the commercial market shaping up for the rest of 2015?
Francis Tan, Chief Investment Officer, SLP Scotia

Watch full video recordings of all the presentations >>