Finding sweet deals amid coronavirus

By Indira Laisram
Alap Patel

Cranbourne-based real estate consultant Alap Patel on how to keep moving in the current crisis. Joining the Qoin movement, he says, was one of the first steps

Even though COVID-19 economic shutdown stretches on, the objective is to remain positive. Alap Patel, real estate consultant at YPA Real Estate, Cranbourne, is a firm believer in that and knows how to make a difference in the current crisis.

It is not something he has learnt overnight, but through the years.

Patel came to Melbourne to study Master of Professional Accounting and MBA from the University of Ballarat (MIT campus) in 2006. Leaving his hometown of Ahmedabad in India, he was determined to develop a strong business acumen, something most Gujarati people are known to possess innately.

True enough, soon after the completion of his degrees, he started as an entrepreneur with audacious plans acquiring the Glen Waverly franchise of Keen To Clean, a professional cleaning service for all office and commercial cleaning needs.

Patel owned this business for almost seven years bringing marketing and effective methods to business. “It was a good venture, I did well. Through this, I was able to afford the opportunity to get involved in community work. I did a few events too and brought singers such as Falguni to Melbourne,” he proudly says.

“When I started, I was fortunate to get some big financiers from Ahmedabad, who were willing to invest here. So, I did projects with them and got some success”

But with the contract coming to its seven-year end and his father needing his help in their construction business back in Ahmedabad, Patel went back to India and ended up spending three years. It would also be another education under way, learning the Indian system and structure of business far related to what he was doing earlier.

“I learnt a lot from my father’s construction business. Of course, there is a lot of difference in the way business is conducted in India and Australia. Besides, the difference in currency is also there,” he says.

But what struck Patel was how real estate businesses there were at the helm of progress using technologies such as 3D. “Virtual 3D virtual technology is booming there, you can get into a property virtually by sitting in your home or office. It also comes packed with information.”

So, after he returned to Melbourne Patel was keen to enter the real estate sector. After working for a year with a security firm at the Melbourne Magistrates Court, Patel went on to complete a Certificate IV in Property Services and dived deep into the real estate market.

He joined YPA Real Estate, Cranbourne in 2018 by leveraging the skills and also the knowledge he gained in India thus making his dreams of soaring in this field a reality.

“When I started, I was fortunate to get some big financiers from Ahmedabad who were willing to invest here. So, I did projects with them and got some success,” he says. What is more, Patel takes pride in the sale of 9 Hildaway Cranbourne property, which, he says, fetched one the highest amount in the month of December 2019. In one year, Patel claims to have sold 10 properties.

The south-east suburb of Cranbourne also has a very big Indian community. Cranbourne South is among the 13 suburbs where house prices cracked $1 million for the first time, according to the Domain Group data last April. The leafy suburb, thanks mainly to demand from Indian buyers has seen its median pushed to $1,030,000, up from $945,500 in the September quarter.

“There is also high demand in Cranbourne because of Clyde which is getting a train station near the school in Cranbourne East,” says Patel.

With the coronavirus, Patel argues, it is a good time to invest and favourable for buyers. “The Victorian Government is offering $10,000 First HomeOwner Grant for eligible purchases in metropolitan Melbourne and offers stamp duty exemptions and discounts for new homes up to $750,000. There is the newly announced $25,000 HomeBuilder grant for new homes and a Builder grant of $5,000. So, it is a good time to buy,” says Patel, adding, “The demand has grown for house and land package. There are lots of enquiries.”

“We promise current market value, transparency on fees and expenses, discourage bait pricing and undertake supervised inspections”

YPA Real Estate will soon be introducing 3D virtual technology to engage more with clients, something Patel is very excited about. Interestingly, he is also one of the new age real estate consultants who can list sellers’ transactions in Qoin (reliable digital currency) for property.

With so many Indian real estate consultants, what draws the attention of so many people to Patel’s profile? Patel believes he has developed a uniquely cooperative way of doing business based on transparency and trust between him and his clients.

“There is competition now,” he admits. “There is one real estate consultant in every house. However, I don’t worry about that, if the client is happy with my service I don’t care about other things. If the client is not happy, he will leave me. Our prices are reasonable and our service guarantees satisfaction.

“We promise current market value, transparency on fees and expenses, discourage bait pricing and undertake supervised inspections. We know exactly what the client exactly wants, fulfil his requirements and make sure he is happy,” he adds.

Clearly, Patel does his business with a sense of passion and daring, in the process, helping people achieve their dreams of home ownership.
Patel has managed to create his own success story from scratch. He believes the future is positive despite the pandemic. “More population means more people will need housing.” Like all successful professionals, he has the determination and the ability to create more opportunities through hard work!

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