Moving with the times: Total Realty
For 10 years, Total Realty has helped Cantabrians buy and sell property by “cutting costs, without cutting corners”.
Celebrating the company’s anniversary recently, founder Rachael Cone reflected on how vast changes in the real estate market inspired this new business model. With a strong belief that industry commission rates were unjustified, Total Realty lowered its rates to 1 percent, eliminating franchise fees and unnecessary expenses. “With the age of the internet, it changed everything,” Rachael explains.
“People used to ring their agent when they wanted to buy a house and they’d rely on that agent to source the property and drive them around… there was a lot of work involved. Whereas now, that’s just totally gone by the way.
“Buyers get home from work, jump on the internet and see everything that’s available. They call their agent direct, go to the open home and, if they like it, they make an offer. That’s the reality. We thought we’d cut to the chase and acknowledge this is the new way.”
Starting out with a handful of agents, Total Realty now has a waiting list of professionals eager to join the team, and all average more than 10 years’ experience.
The branches have also expanded, and now service Rangiora, Nelson and Dunedin, as well as the flagship Christchurch office which is home to 20 agents. “There’s so much demand,” Rachael says. “Over the 10 years, we’ve saved Cantabrians over $70 million in commission, so it’s making a big difference which we’re really proud of.”