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Times they are a changing… It’s no secret that during low season many of us traditional high street real estate brokers have been left twiddling our thumbs and griping whilst witnessing record numbers of ‘budget’ travelers from the Middle East and South Asia arrive on our sunny shores, taking advantage of cheaper accommodation and flights. There have been some buyers around, but any honest agent will tell you low season was pretty low all round. But has it? May be us traditional agents have been too complacent expecting the mountain to move to Mohammed, when quite possibly it should be vice versa? Looking around Central Festival, located directly opposite our main office I see many people shopping, dining or perhaps going to watch a movie. There is no doubt about it, Central has been a major turning point in Pattaya’s progression to becoming a world class resort. One would expect a very high percentage of the several million visitors attracted to Pattaya each year, would at some point enter one shopping mall or another. So, is it a case of resting on your laurels or getting out there to meet the market? I know what we’ve chosen to do, even when myself and another prominent agency recently frowned on the practice of buying property from a shopping mall booth. We’ve moved the mountain to Mohammed so to speak, however we add value to the usual residential services offered by ‘sales booths’ with the benefit of a globally recognized brand. As Dave Buckley recently wrote in the October issue of his Transparency supplement there are three possible ways to buy property, either by going directly to the developer where you will only be offered what the developer himself wants to sell you. You may go to a traditional agent whose office location may not be in a convenient location, parking may be restricted and quite frankly if you’re here for a weekend or short holiday you’d prefer to be out shopping or catching the latest block buster, or quite simply you can visit a sales booth outside of usual office hours and still catch the movie, just be aware of who you’re buying from and the services offered. The standard practice for mall booths has been to exclusively sell condominium project sales, enquire about a ready built property or resale, particularly a house or even a rental property and you’ll come up against a stonewall and the hard sell will commence once more. Colliers International saw a gap in the market and decided to open a booth in Central Festival in order to attract attention from the high volume of visitors and to lead potential clients over to our main office for a professional consultation to discuss their requirements fully. Of course we will still offer condominium projects to those interested, but we also make it plainly clear in our recently published booklet ‘Buyers Guide to Condominium Projects’ that we will also cater to renting or reselling our clients properties should they wish. We can even look after the property management and keep a watchful eye over the property whilst the owner is overseas.


Besides these standard residential services another broker not far from our location is adding further value by offering Visa, Insurance and Legal services to their portfolio, a one stop shop in the heart of a bustling mall. The days have gone when sitting around waiting for a client to enter your office was good enough, now you have to get out there add value and promote what you do best. To receive a copy of the ‘Buyers Guide to Condominium Projects’ email mark.bowling@colliers.com


Times they are a changing