Why the Real Estate Franchise Model is Broken

Breaking away from considering the big real estate franchise model is one of the smartest decisions you can make when thinking about who to sell your home!

Since the invention of the internet, long-established real estate franchise groups are no longer the be-all and end-all they once were.  In fact, some might say they are actually becoming dinosaurs within the industry!  Due for extinction!

Years ago working with a franchise meant that your agent was provided with the tools and resources to help make successful sales. Agents received in house training, business marketing to strengthen the brand attracting more buyers and technological resources to help sell your home.

But the internet has now reshaped the whole property market and it’s because everything is now online.

Even the smaller independent agencies now have access to the same information that franchises used to hold. Boutique agencies also have access to all the technology, systems, forms and documents needed to run their business and sell your home successfully.

So why is the traditional franchise model broken?  Because it hasn’t changed with the times.

When I worked for a franchise, less than 10 years ago, I received no in house training even though the business received training grants.  I had to take annual leave days to attend outside training which I paid myself.  Though I had many great marketing ideas, largely due to having an associate diploma in marketing and experience in working in radio, television and the newspaper industries, my ideas were never adopted.  This was because my ideas were not within the constrains of the franchise.

Another reason franchisees are going backwards is because they still need to pay their fees to the Franchisor even though they are no longer receiving the tools and support like the good old days.   Plus, they don’t have the freedom to run their businesses the way they want without the need for approvals.

As an agent working within a franchise we were subjected to the weekly sales meeting about how to condition the seller, a term used often – and still being used,  to get the price reduction to sell the homes that were lagging on the market and not selling.  It was more about volume and turning over the houses so the business could pay their franchise fees and overheads.  It was also about where the agents next listing is coming from.  It was never about creating a strategy or brainstorming new ideas on how to help sell the property.

This pressure from management turns agents into chasers for the next listing and often when agents have too many listings, they then begin to cut corners, provide a sub level of service to the sellers and buyers and often undersell property!

Since leaving the franchise and starting my own business, I couldn’t be happier with how it’s all turned out.  I’m grateful to all my repeat clients and for all the referrals I receive.

If you think I could be of service to you, your family or friends by offering my real estate knowledge and expertise, then call and make an appointment.





Serene Shades are the Top Colour Trends for 2021

The pandemic has changed the way we see the walls of our home and as many people are continue working from home, the line separating work lives from home lives have become notably indistinct.

While you may lack the funds to undertake a total renovation involving adding a new room or a ‘She Shed” for your new home office, there are a few understated updates you can do that will make a huge difference.

Sure, your productivity might get a boost from having a brand new coffee machine, but changing the colours of your space can impact it as well.

Dulux’s Colour Forecast 2021

Staying at home for most of last year has led to people preferring their homes to echo their personalities and for it to be a haven that functions both for working/studying and relaxing.

In past years, trends had been mostly influenced by European design and architecture shows, but most of these were cancelled in 2020. This resulted in the trends being dictated by the adjustments of our homes towards new ways of living and working in one space.

Colour evokes emotions and actually helps people relate to their space. At the moment, people would like to be cheerful and secure in our homes and colours can help bring that feeling of contentment, relaxation and happiness in your home.

Consisting of three soothing patterns, the 2021 forecast is inspired by nature together with instances of stronger colour to ease the mood and improve our outlook.

Retreat Palette

This palette comprises warm whites, brown-based neutrals and dusty blues that evoke a feeling of soft luxury, together with vintage-inspired shades of burgundy and deep ocean blue.

Nourish Palette

This palette depicts our rejuvenated enjoyment of natural beauty, with mellow, buff neutrals and bits of tan, soft olive and muted ochre.

Natural shades sooth and can bring out a sense of being more grounded and safe. These subdued shades, with an earthy undertone, are super calming and takes us back to our natural surroundings and can bring a feeling of harmony and peace.

Reset Palette

This is an inspiring and positive range of stirring and more upbeat colours; lush blues and coral, warm rust and lively mash-ups of pink and terracotta suggest a 1970s nostalgia and bring about recollections of travel and fun.

Starting your Colour Journey

If you’re having a hard time relaxing after a hectic day, colour can help you differentiate spaces, particularly if you work from home and prefer to have a distinctive vibe between your work area and relaxing spaces.

Where is the ideal area to start your colour journey?

Start in the master bedroom by creating a feature behind your bed. To create a lovely, moody vibe, use a deeper or darker tone and combine this with lighter bed linens and accessories.

You can also start in your home office or study area. Colours will help you feel motivated and give you a reminder that this is a working space. Start with a mid-tone or deeper tone.

To improve your mood, you can paint your front door in a bold or dark tone.

These are simple ways to introduce colour and personality into your home and separate your home from that of your neighbours. Colours reflect you and the people who reside in your home, so make it exciting and keep in mind that it’s just paint and it is not permanent.

For more inspiration on colour palettes visit my Colour Combinations board at Pinterest.

5 Home Features You Should Upgrade Before Selling

From new paint to simply making your yard neat and tidy, learn what focus-areas I recommend and tasks that will have a hefty influence without breaking the bank.

Find out what buyers are looking for, and how your home can meet their expectations.

  1. The Walls

Painting is always a priority because for each dollar you spend on painting, you are most likely to recoup over a thousand.

So what right colours do I recommend?

Choose neutral colours, but avoid the colours becoming too plain. Many shades of white are available, so what you choose will be determined by the amount of light your space gets, and the tones of furniture and floors.

If you change your flooring, take into account the paint as well, and vice versa. White tones will reflect the flooring’s colour.

  1. The Floor

Changing flooring is not simple, but there are times the present flooring is tattered and dirty. If your carpet is 20 years old, it’s going to gain a lot from an upgrade.

Picking new flooring for a property for sale should be influenced by the type of home and what kind of buyer you are targeting. For example, if you’re selling a home to attract home buyers (versus investors), then you have to show that in the flooring. I’d recommend choosing a really good engineered floorboard rather than a hard wearing vinyl.  If you are targeting property investors, choose quality, reasonably priced flooring, like an inexpensive laminate.

For carpets, both tenants and buyers still prefer softness when they step into their bedroom or upstairs areas. If you are appealing to investors who will eventually rent out the property, choose low-maintenance, stain-resistant carpets like the synthetic dyed nylon varieties. Choose something more luxurious – to appeal to people who are purchasing their forever home.

Lastly, consider the architecture and style of the remaining spaces of your home when choosing a colour or floor style. Consider the light in the spaces and the architecture of the home, as some homes benefit from a lighter or darker flooring depending on the period of style.

  1. The curb appeal

Street appeal is crucial because people often drive past a property before they have even determined if they’re going to its open inspection.

De-clutter and throw away any unnecessary objects, fix or mend fencing, plant some colour, mulch the garden then paint the front door and letterbox.

  1. The kitchen

We all know, what sells homes are kitchens and bathrooms. However, before you completely demolish your kitchen, find out if a renovation is more fitting.

If you’re going to remodel your kitchen, ensure that it is going to be reflected in the sale price. If not, then clean all surfaces and select some well chosen styling items.

If in any doubt, consult with me. It’s important not to over spend if you’re not going to get a return on your investment.

  1. The lighting as well as the windows

Clean your windows!   Allow people to see your yard and feel a connection to their potential home.  I also recommend trimming back any trees that block views or light. Most buyers place a high priority on a well-lit home.

Check your light fittings and update them if necessary.


Now take a tour of your home and see what improvements can be made to increase the sale price.  Remember, if you need help or advice, I’m just a call away!


Annette has been servicing the Newcastle and the Lake Macquarie regions and has been offering her clients sound recommendations and  professional advise since opening One Agency Pinkerton Properties in 2013.   If you found this article helpful or know someone who may benefit from it, feel free to share it. 

5 Important Home Features for Low Maintenance Living

Regular maintenance is required to keep your home in top-notch condition. Often these tasks are too much work for us, taking up valuable time and can be expensive if you employ professionals.

Certainly, retirees and semi-retirees can think of more pleasurable activities and better things to spend their time and money on.

A low-maintenance lifestyle can be achieved by finding a home in which both indoors and outdoors are meticulously set up to be hassle-free. It is a period of your life when you want to take it easy more and work less.

To help you enjoy low-maintenance living, here are five important features in your new home:

  1. Clever use of space

The most effective way to lower maintenance is by downsizing to a smaller house. According to Stockland’s 2020 Property survey, this is a rising trend among buyers.

But note that you don’t need to sacrifice space to downsize. A home with the right layout will feel large, comfortable and liveable, if the important features are laid out in a clever manner.

It’s essential to have a kitchen you can be proud of and where you can socialise with friends and family. Even if you live in a downsized home, your kitchen should still feel comfortable and spacious.

Smart designs take advantage of all available space, while still focused on view lines, the links between living areas and smart storage options.

The smart use of space for new homes involves connecting spaces in such a way to ensure privacy and amenity of the residents and their guests. This is especially true in Newcastle, where integration to the outdoors is essential.

  1. Low maintenance garden

Gardening is a pleasurable activity but not when the front and backyards are large as the pleasure could easily be outweighed by maintenance.

Instead of having a large space, opt for a smaller garden that is well designed and well-incorporated into the house.

Today’s front yards are regarded as the new “social spot” of homes as well as the area where you can showcase your gardening skills. Front yards feature a variety of flowers, plants and landscape designs. Low-maintenance patio backyards, on the other hand, offer a retreat where you can rest and relax.

  1. Sturdy materials and superior build

The deterioration of a house is commonly the reason for the many maintenance tasks that need to be done around the home. If you’re living in a house with a bit of age, expect that you may come across some problems with wiring, the plumbing or something unforeseen that is caused by general wear and tear.

An industry survey found that the main reason people purchase a new home is assurance in build quality, low probability of major repairs and higher quality features for an affordable price.

Choosing a home constructed using high standards and good quality materials, like steel framers to reduce the risk of a termite attack, are important to the home’s long-term maintenance requirements.

  1. Design for diverse ages

You will need to do a variety of maintenance jobs for your home over time. But choosing to live in a low-maintenance home also requires ensuring your home is right for you at various phases of your life.

You want to avoid moving into a new house only to discover it wouldn’t be able to meet your needs as time passes.

Choose designs that feature larger bathrooms, more spacious hallways, fewer or zero steps and are typically more comfortable and bigger.

  1. Common spaces for entertaining

Parties and other events in which friends and family get together requires time to prepare, take a bit of work, and of course, maintenance! However, it doesn’t mean you have to forego these celebrations just because you are living the low maintenance lifestyle.

One sure way to have a maintenance-free lifestyle is to adopt the common facilities featured in gated communities – which are all maintained by the on-site property manager.

Entertaining can be made easy, thanks to having access to larger kitchens, events places, bars, dining areas, lounge, etc. Compared to the family home, lifestyle communities have more facilities – all maintenance free!

This feature allows you to downsize maintenance, downsize your yard, but elevates your lifestyle.