06/06/2006 - 22:00

REIWA may relocate

06/06/2006 - 22:00

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After three decades in Subiaco, the Real Estate Institute of WA is considering a move through what it hopes will be a partnership with a developer.

REIWA may relocate

After three decades in Subiaco, the  Real Estate Institute of WA is considering a move through what it hopes will be a partnership with a developer.

REIWA chief executive Anne Arnold said the current building was under-utilised and did not represent the progressive and changing face of the organisation. The institute would, therefore, either build a new office at a different location or redevelop its existing prime site.  

“We’ve traditionally been more of an ‘institution’ but we want to be more innovative and get closer to the consumer public,” Ms Arnold told WA Business News.

She said REIWA was once considered an “old boys club” but had since changed its culture and logo.

“The office configuration is dated, creating a physical separation between cultures. I would prefer our learning centre be integrated into a larger communal office with more flexibility of space,” Ms Arnold said.

Parking is also a problem for REIWA, with a large proportion of the institute’s students finding parking availability and time limits inadequate in Subiaco.

“We run a major training centre and put thousands of students through every year, and street parking has been problematic in this area,” Ms Arnold said.

REIWA is planning to relocate its in-house printing business to a light industrial area to better facilitate distribution.

“There are arguably better places for our printing operations, like on the edge of Fremantle where rents are not so high and access to arterial routes would facilitate easier distribution.”

Ms Arnold has big plans to change the Institute into a “Real Estate Information Centre”, where the public and members can readily access and research property information to make better decisions.

“We want to move away from low-level member services and re-engineer ourselves into a more focused research facility with a greater capacity and more sophisticated services,” she said.

“So much of what we deal with every day are the misunderstandings of buyers who don’t realise our obligation is to the seller who pays the fee. We want to be more than an agents’ group and inform these buyers of their rights and give them practical advice on property matters.”

Proposed features of the new office space include a map reading area, internet research stations and a theatrette where short documentaries that play-out common scenarios in the property game can be viewed.

Burgess Rawson joint managing director Geoff Potter said the agency had been approached by REIWA to collect expressions of interest from developers that may wish to partner with the institute to explore the best possible outcomes.

“Whether they build a new premises, redevelop the existing site or find a new building which suits the institute’s needs, these are the options we will consider with a partner,” he said.

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