LESS IS MORE FOR 'POSITIVE' PROPERTY DEVELOPER
Written on the 14 May 2012
AN UPPER Mount Gravatt boutique property developer is bucking the downward trend by thinking small, adding humour and forming joint ventures.
Positive Property Strategies (PPS) managing director Bob Andersen (pictured) considers laughter to be the best remedy for Queensland’s ailing real estate market.
“You need to have a sense of humour as things do not always go well – just sit back and have a laugh,” he says.
“We like to work and play hard as well as not take setbacks too seriously. It is an intensive business and you can burn out.”
Andersen enjoys being involved in all aspects of the business owing to his former days as a one-man show. He has a handson approach to the company he founded in 2001 that now employs three staff and up to nine external consultants.
“I talk to my staff and hold conference calls every day. I constantly contact them and do not leave them feeling they are alone,” he says.
“We do forward planning and set both daily and weekly goals. I also motivate staff financially by giving them a share in profits. It makes them interested in projects they manage and I find that saves costs and improves end value.”
PPS carried out works on $47 million in projects during the 2011 financial year, including 15-units at Auchenflower ($9 million), 10 townhouses in Northgate ($5 million) and 17 townhouses in Salisbury ($8.5 million).
“We are making a $600,000 acquisition of a Coorparoo site where we want to build five townhouses and also a $1.5 million Carina site for 10 townhouses,” says Andersen.
“A lot of people come and go in property development and investment professions. To last a long time you need integrity and a long-term view.”
His strategy to counter the struggling property market involves finding investors to support front-end projects.
“Our Portfolio Turbocharger enables people to acquire investment properties at developer prices, meaning they can buy a $518,000 property for just $422,000 due to the absence of developer fees, selling commission, stamp duty and legal costs,” he says.
“It helps inject equity into the project and we have quite a few of these investors. It is a win-win situation that removes some of the risk. We expect to grow our Portfolio Turbocharger product by 20 per cent in FY12.”
PPS also establishes joint ventures with land owners to generate capital through property investment.
“I have always liked property investment as an asset class. We own the property at cost price and there are tax benefits from keeping some for future cash flow,” says Andersen.
“Our Property Mastermind company helps people develop their own projects and profit. There is so much opportunity in the market that I do not worry my students may decide to compete with me. Some of them find really good deals and approach me to create a joint venture.”
The company specialises in little or no money-down vendor finance deals, which Andersen himself used to acquire four and five-lot subdivisions. Proceeds from these deals enabled him to take control of his life and pursue his passion for property.
When he is not working on projects, he enjoys sailing his boat called Site around Australia and abroad.