We are excited to announce that it has been 20 years since we first opened our doors! This is a major milestone for our business and a testament to the amazing support we have received, and we know we wouldn’t be where we are today without everyone’s support. Kristalla and Michael are incredibly grateful, and we would like to thank you. Most importantly we want to acknowledge the contribution of everyone who has helped us along the way.
Our humble beginnings
Directors, Michael and Kristalla, grew up in the property industry thanks to their parents – they would spend school holidays at their parents’ offices and would hear about their day around the dinner table. They started off wanting to follow in their parents’ footsteps – however they later developed their own style and a different way of doing things.
When they opened their doors – they didn’t have one client!
Most agents take the time to build up their database before breaking out on their own. Michael and Kristalla knew there was a demand for an agency that placed relationships above market share, and they dove in headfirst.
One of our first clients was enjoying their morning coffee at a café across the road, when they noticed the new agency had just opened. They came across to suss us out and asked, “Do you do sales?” and then asked for a business card – in and out within 2 minutes and 20 years later, we still keep in touch. We have sold numerous properties for that client, and they have referred us to so many of their friends.
The lessons we’ve learnt
Michael says, “A lot may have changed since those early days, but the essence of who we are as a business remains, we’re still the same boutique family-run operation. We’re committed to putting our clients first and helping them on their property journey.” Michael and Kristalla play an active part of the local community – both having lived in Paddington for over 10 years.
That said, the last two decades have taught us a few important lessons. Specifically:
- When you get busy, step back, review your systems and work out how can you improve that process. Take for example – leasing a property. Responding to rental enquires is a full-time job for someone – during Covid we we’re seeing over 500 enquires a month. So, we streamlined and simplified the process of tenants moving in and out of properties – with the help of technology. Kristalla says, “This is a benefit to our clients – as we’re leasing properties quicker and reducing the vacancy period.”
- A great business lives its values every day: Michael comments, “For the first 15 years, our business was an LJ Hooker franchisee. While we’re grateful for the much-needed structure and support this provided, it wasn’t the best fit for our vision. That’s why we had to break out on our own and create the Local Agency Co. brand. This has allowed us to run things our way, truly focusing on our clients and helping them make informed decisions.”
- You need to appreciate every client: Kristalla comments, “Having built this business from scratch, we are acutely aware of how important every opportunity is. Our focus has always been on building lasting relationships and meeting our clients’ needs. This has led to more than half our property management clients sticking with us for over a decade. It has also seen over 80% of our sales listings come from current and previous clients and referrals.”
Our hopes for the future
While we reflect on our 20-year journey and the constant challenges, we still love what we do and can’t wait to see where the future takes us.
We remain committed to being the real estate experts that you can trust and rely on. The ones you turn to for advice knowing that you’ll get honesty and transparency, without any additional pressure.
We will continue to work hard for our clients and constantly push ourselves to deliver the best possible experience. We will keep a lookout for new technologies and other innovations that can help us be more efficient and responsive. We’re not chasing market share or trying to lease and sell as many properties as we can, our focus is on our clients and their needs.
The people we owe our success to
We feel incredibly lucky to be in the position we’re in and grateful for all the support we’ve had. We’d like to say an enormous thank you to everyone that’s been part of the journey so far. We’d particularly like to acknowledge our current and former team members and clients, who have been so integral to our success.
The future is exciting!