Sam Danckert grew up in Mt Martha on the Mornington Peninsula, and he established very early on in life that he loved real estate. Sam began his career in real estate in Essendon in 2004, an inner city suburb with a fast growing market with loads of properties for sale, weekends full of house inspections and a high rate of properties selling within an average of 30 days.
A year later an opportunity arose for Sam to start selling properties in Mt Martha, and it made sense for him to base himself in an area that he is passionate about and has a strong family connection to.
Explains Sam, “When I was five years old my family moved from Queensland to Mt Martha to be closer to my grandparents who had always lived in the area. My grandfather’s family used to own ‘The Briars’. He grew up living on this historical property and later in life he and my grandmother used to run the Milk Bar in Mt Martha Village, so the area is very important to me and my family. It’s very special to have the background knowledge of what the area was like, who the people were who helped to build the community and the identities who were a significant part of the growth of Mt Martha.”
When Sam began selling real estate in Mt Martha in 2005, he found the marketplace completely different to suburban Melbourne. In those days there was a regional feel to the real estate arena in Mt Martha, with the majority of properties selling via private sale in around 120 days. Auctions would generally fail, and with 400 or so properties on the market there was no sense of urgency. “It was so surprising,” explains Sam. “House prices in Mt Martha were so much lower than Essendon but the facilities and surrounds were so superior. It really didn’t reconcile in my mind.”
Fast forward to 2017 and the market has changed significantly. Now around 20% of houses are sold via auction with concise campaigns, and with Vendors happy to expose their properties on the weekends via home inspections. Today there is seldom more than 100 properties on the market at any one time, and with decreased supply comes increased demand. “Properties for sale and days on market are the two key barometers for the real estate health of an area,” explains Sam, “and Mt Martha is leading the way in the metropolitan area for the speed at which properties are selling, and the lack of availability.”
There are a number of factors that have contributed to this rise in property value in Mt Martha. The opening of Peninsula Link in 2009 resulted in a more a relaxed drive (with no traffic lights) and a reduced commute time from the city (around 55 minutes). The area became more accessible, and add to that the changing face of the workplace - with more people working from home and hot desks becoming the norm - more and more people are choosing to live on the edge of the urban sprawl.
Mt Martha also offers considerably better value for money in terms of property prices. Families are selling up their city and suburban homes and making the sea change, and getting change in their pocket with better properties at lower prices. And there is the added bonus of being set on beautiful Port Phillip Bay with sea views, fresh air and the village lifestyle that Mt Martha offers. It is also a gateway to the hinterland of the Mornington Peninsula, with the wineries, restaurants and tourist attractions the area offers.
The profile of the local community has changed significantly. Traditionally an area that attracted an older demographic of retirees, the average age of residents is now 30 - 50 years. It is an incredible shift within a decade, with the grandchildren of original residents now moving into the area with their young families. The average house price is currently around $885,000, and that amount achieves a much more significant property, ideal for growing families, than can be achieved in inner Melbourne.
Now having worked and lived in the area for much of his life, Sam has cemented his bond with the Mornington Peninsula, and in particular Mt Martha. On September 1 2017, Sam launched his first solo enterprise – Danckert Real Estate - from his office in Mt Martha Village.
From the moment Sam Danckert considered creating his own real estate business, he put his consumer hat on and tried to objectively assess if there was really enough room for another real estate agent in the Mt Martha space. “I am really critical of new businesses that set themselves up, put out their flag, and then just do what every other business is doing. I really went in to a deep state of enquiry to determine whether I should simply work for an established real estate company, or whether I felt I could make a significant enough contribution to the industry in this area if I went into business myself. I had to feel sure that I had a strong enough identity and individuality to warrant setting up a new real estate business. The decision to launch Danckert Real Estate was a slow and considered one, and what we offer will indeed be ground breaking.”
“For me” continues Sam, “the gap is really around allocation of resources. As a boutique agency we will not have the same amount of resources as some of the chain players, but I know first-hand that their resources are not aligned with the critical value generation areas of real estate."
"There are a few key factors that are of critical value to a client who wants to sell their property and/or buy a property, and that is for their Agent to understand them, to know their lifestyle requirements and to have a clear vision of their deep needs and cater to these needs."
"It is also so important for the Agent and the client (buyer or seller) to have a rapport that enables robust negotiations. The outcome will be so much richer and so much better for everyone involved. Chinese whispers don’t work, one person needs to be the conduit to ensure the best possible experience.”
“At Danckert Real Estate we are certainly aware of all the tools available to optimise the business, but we have not lost sight that at our core we are a service based business. That is our foundation. We are only as good as our last review from both the buyer and the seller. We combine old school values with the technology and techniques of today and tomorrow. We delve deep, we think and we look at the big picture, but you can only achieve a big result by taking care of the details."
“I have a great deal of empathy with buyers. I bought my first house at the age of 22 and there weren’t many buyers who were committed to understanding what I was looking for, and through that experience I was able to resolve the type of Agent I wanted to be,” says Sam. “I was determined that I would put in the effort required, and that I would listen to my client’s needs and understand their real estate goals, from a Vendor's perspective."
"It’s also so important to understand what a buyer is looking for in a home, not just the specifications of a property but understanding what sort of lifestyle they are looking to achieve. A house is four walls and a roof but a home is an emotional space that connects with people so it’s important as an Agent to understand the difference between the two.”
“I am so passionate about Mt Martha, and real estate in general. I love working with my clients to assist them in selling or buying a property, and helping them to reach the goals they set out achieve.”
Real Estate Agent of the Year (Mt Martha): 2015 / 2016 / 2017
1/9 Howey Rd, Mt Martha. 3934