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THIS WEEK’S ARTICLES: Rainforest Living in Queensland; Raffles Residences Manila; Swarovski Bathroom Faucets; Chinese Property Taxes; US interest rates; Australian Banks on the Assault; The Malibu Home of Sting; The Rotating Bath Tub; The W New York…

We bring you the last installment for 2008 of our look at luxury property, design and concepts from Australia and around the world.  Your support throughout the year has made the MTLH blog the most viewed of its kind in Australia and contributed to Marquette Turner Luxury Homes being named as The World’s Most Outstanding Luxury Agency Under 2 Years Old.  Not bad in just a year, and 2009 promises to be even bigger and better.  Thank you!

Please enjoy this week’s articles, or as always you can stay here and read the MTLH blog.

We wish you a fantastic & safe festive period.

Michael Marquette & Simon Turner

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LUXURY HOMES
See our luxury homes showcased in Australia & Around The World


FINAL THOUGHT

“Cheers to a new year and another chance for us to get it right.” Oprah Winfrey

Once you list your home for sale you may find it difficult to step aside and let your agent take over.  You may be wrestling with the temptation to linger around while prospective buyers view your home, hoping to get the chance to point out all of the “bells and whistles” you know make your house more “sellable”.

If you really want to help, however, you will leave the house whenever it is being shown.

We have found that the sales process does not really begin until buyers have begun to voice their personal objections about a property, which makes their motives, plans and position much clearer to the agent.

Unsurprisingly, most buyers are unlikely to feel comfortable voicing their opinions in front of the home owner.  Many buyers are walking through with family members or friends and want to be able to openly discuss the pros and cons of the home.  Sometimes their objections are serious enough to remove your house from consideration.  This may not be the case though, as oftentimes homebuyers have specific criteria they are “judging” the home on and just want to make sure it measures up the their wants and needs.  If they really like the house they are going to want to talk freely and openly about the pros and cons of the home.

It is often difficult for the home owner to listen to buyer objections without taking them personally, and this is often the case sometimes even when the agent is conveying these objections to the owner.  Regardless, it is important to remember that these objections often do not reflect actual criticism of your property, simply the “inner monologue” of a buyers thought and later negotiating process.

If a seller is standing at the agent’s elbow, the buyer won’t be comfortable enough to allow the process of raising objections take place. If the buyer feels intimidated or suppressed, the sale could be lost.

Also, if the home owner is pestering the buyer about how great their home is then they might feel like there is something that they are trying to cover up.  The best way to help is to give your real estate agent room to make the sale.  They will be viewed as far more impartial and this is ultimately what you have engaged their services for.

A quality agent, will have excellent credentials and come highly recommended.  Ask them prior what training they have had, if they are trained in negotiation, and what associations/awards they have to their name

Michael Marquette

FYI: Read related articles on Real Estate Agents; or Luxury Homes; or Selling Your Home

More information: Marquette Turner Luxury Homes, 2008’s Winner of the World’s Most Outstanding Luxury Agency Under 2 Years Old, are tertiary trained in negotiation and are one of Australia’s just two Board of Regents for the prestigious Who’s Who in Luxury Real Estate.  Contact us to find out how we can represent you on +61 433 170 170 or email michael@marquetteturner.com.au


In the rolling Tuscan hills not far from the mythic cities of Florence, Siena and San Gimignano is one of the largest private landholdings in all of Italy. Two grand cypress-lined lanes ascend to a historic castle. Dotting the estate are restored Casali (farmhouses) each with dramatic glass-tiled private pools. This treasured property is Castello di Casole, the newest and most romantic addition to the Timbers Collection portfolio.

Castello di Casole has a home to suit you with residences located privately throughout the estate or together in an enclave, just steps away from a five-star hotel.

A Signature Development of Timbers Resorts, the Castello di Casole estate is one of the largest landholdings in all of Tuscany – a 4,200-acre game reserve and working agricultural estate actively producing vintage wine and olive oil.

Commanding the most favored sites throughout the property are the ruins of modest Casali, each of which are unique to each other and are separately named with their own custom style, layout and color scheme. Each Casale farmhouse is a collection of main home and outbuildings, which now serve as unique and inviting guest quarters. Indoor spaces for each family compound are 4,000 to 7,000 square feet or 370 to 650 square meters.

Prices range from 290,000 – 590,000 Euro for Residential Interests; Whole Ownership pricing starts at 3.7 million Euro.

To view more information, images and the video click HERE (or any of the images above). You can also visit the Castello di Casole website.

Contact Michael Marquette on +61 433 170 170 or via email Michael@marquetteturner.com.au or Christine Watson on +61 414 352 680 or via email Christine@marquetteturner.com.au

Part 1 of a 2 part Investigation

No matter where you go in property obsessed Sydney you will hear real estate agents, friends, family, neighbours and people from all works of life giving their take on how Sydney is faring in the Luxury Real Estate arena. I hear many people say that the Luxury market has remained largely unaffected. Is this the truth or are people blinded or generally ill informed?

It’s important to look at the volume of sales in Sydney’s most expensive harbour and beach front suburbs and for the purposes of my investigation I have used 2007 sales and 2008 sales to date (we are almost finished yet another year).

Marquette Turner Luxury Homes considers any property above $1 million to be in the Luxury category as only 3.65% of all residential property sold in Australia in 2007 achieved a price equal to or greater than $1 million. In other words over 96% of residential property in Australia was sold for less than $1 million in 2007 – it really highlights just how special and rare luxury homes are.

When looking at the very top end – (we call this our “Private Brokerage” end of the Luxury market) we have chosen $5 million as our benchmark figure. Any property sold at or above this price is part of our “Private Brokerage” results and represent the very finest homes sold in Sydney’s harbour front and beachside suburbs.

So to the truth – are Luxury sales in Sydney remaining largely unaffected by the economic upheaval that we are currently experiencing? Without going into a price debate I have chosen volume as our indicator as “Private Brokerage” homes are unique and are very difficult to compare simply by looking at sale price from year to year. They are very emotional purchases and appeal to a very limited and privileged few. So let’s let the figures speak for themselves:

In 2007 in the Local Government areas of Sydney, Manly, Mosman, North Sydney, Waverley and Woollahra there were 379 sales of residential properties which qualified to be part of the Marquette Turner Luxury Homes’ “Private Brokerage” Results. In 2008 to date when looking at the same areas there have only been 202 sales which would make the grade – so have Luxury Property Sales been affected?

The simple answer is yes, they most certainly have – volumes are down by close to 50% for a myriad of reasons which we will explore in Part 2 of this fascinating look into super Luxury residential Sydney.

sail_boats_in_front_of_opera_house

Michael Marquette

Click on the link for PART 2

FYI: Read related articles on Auctions; Luxury Homes; and the Who’s Who in Luxury Real Estate

We can indeed see Russia from where we are, but no, we’re not in Alaska.

This article is actually absolutely nothing to do with Sarah Palin or the recent US Presidential Campaigning.   Marquette Turner Luxury Homes has the privilege of featuring on the front cover of Russia’s leading Luxury Homes magazine, International Residence.

I briefly studied Russian as a language at university and got to try it out on the locals when serving in the military in Afghanistan and Kyrgyzstan a few years back, however, my translation abilities can’t quite cope with a magazine.

Nonetheless we invite you to visit their website, and indeed browse through the magazine by clicking on the front cover above, or CLICK HERE.

Marquette Turner Luxury Homes is truly establishing itself as THE luxury agency with an International Focus, ably assisted by our colleagues of the Who’s Who in Luxury Real Estate, and we look forward to showcasing some amazing new properties in truly splendid locations in the coming weeks.

Simon Turner

FYI: Read related articles on Luxury Homes; view Marquette Turner’s listings; and Overseas Investments

SEATTLE – Luxury Real Estate’s Board of Regents announced today its continued expansion in Australia with Marquette Turner Luxury Homes, which will be the exclusive representative of the New South Wales, Australia territory.

LuxuryRealEstate.com is the most-viewed luxury real estate Web site in the world, featuring more than 66,000 high-end properties in 106 countries.

Marquette Turner Luxury Homes specializes in the sale of luxury properties in New South Wales, with a particular focus on the cities of Sydney and Newcastle. Established by Michael Marquette and Simon Turner, the Agency is at the forefront of luxury real estate in Australia.

“Marquette Turner Luxury Homes has quickly become an important part of our international network, and I’m pleased to offer them this place on our Board of Regents,” said John Brian Losh, CEO and publisher of LuxuryRealEstate.com, and CEO, chairman and broker of Ewing & Clark, Inc., Seattle’s oldest real-estate brokerage.

The focus of Marquette Turner Luxury homes is on satisfying the long-term needs of their luxury clients. The firm is highly selective in choosing which clients to work with and offer an extremely personalized boutique approach.

Michael Marquette, co-President of Marquette Turner said: “Who’s Who in Luxury Real Estate has no peer when it comes to showcasing luxury property from around the world.  Having been chosen to represent Australia’s premier city, Sydney, on the Board of Regents, we are truly at the pinnacle of worldwide luxury real estate.  We look forward to pioneering and partnering with the finest Luxury real estate organization and it’s members throughout the world.”

The Board of Regents is a prestigious affiliation of luxury brokers, which forms the governing body of the global Luxury Real Estate network. It is comprised of 84 brokerage firms representing more than 600 offices and 1,900 luxury real estate professionals from around the world. Each Board of Regents member is selected because of his or her qualifications and commitment to the Luxury Real Estate brand.

For more information on Marquette Turner Luxury Homes, visit www.marquetteturner.com.au. For more information on the Board of Regents, visit www.Regents.com.

About the Luxury Real Estate Board of Regents
The Board of Regents is an exclusive network of the world’s most elite luxury real estate brokers, comprised of the most legendary names in the industry selected by Luxury Real Estate CEO John Brian Losh. The Board of Regents is the governing body of Who’s Who in Luxury Real Estate, the worldwide network of luxury real estate brokerage firms. Members of the Board of Regents are marketing experts, providing innovation and unparalleled service to their clients. For more information, visit www.LuxuryRealEstate.com or www.Regents.com.

Overlooking Sailors Bay, this fantastically positioned, two storey home offers all the charm and beauty of Northbridge without losing any of its original character.

This property is ideal for the astute buyer who requires the peacefulness of city fringe living, yet the accessibility and convenience of being so close to the CBD of Sydney (7 kilometres away). This will appeal to those looking for a “community” appeal, and being positioned so close to all North Shore Private Schools is certainly a great asset.

More information: Learn more about this property by clicking the images above, CLICK HERE

CONTACT: Christine Watson on +61 414 352 680 or via email Christine@marquetteturner.com.auor Michael Marquette on +61 433 170 170 or via email Michael@marquetteturner.com.au

FYI: See more of our Luxury Australian Properties

Here’s some great words of wisdom by Californian Jim Walberg, a great Luxury Real Estate colleague of Marquette Turner’s, regarding a conversation that he recently had with his kids:

“They asked the $64,000 question just before they left to drive back down to school about an hour ago. “Dad, what do you suggest we do regarding our future plans for our careers? Should we wait a bit and apply for corporate interviews after this economic crisis has subsided?” I gave them an old quote from Napolean Hill that has served us well. I hope you find it useful, too.

“Do not wait to take action! The time will never be “just right”. Start where you stand, and work with whatever tools you may have at your command. Better tools will be found as you go along.”

It was a very inspiring time to spend time with our kids who will be the future leaders of our country’s economic success.”

Great advice from Jim about living in the moment and never letting perfect getting in the way of better! Keep moving forwards my friends. Simon Turner

More information:
Jim Walberg is based in the San Fransisco Bay Area and is the leading guru on Carribean Island property, and many other real estate topics. We’ll be featuring plenty more of his great insights.

In what can be described as an amazing coup for Australian real estate I am proud to announce that Marquette Turner Luxury Homes has been named the Best Luxury Real Estate Agency in the world (Less than 2 years old).

Awarded by The Who’s Who in Luxury Real Estate at a ceremony held at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Philadelphia on Monday October 13, our company became the first non-American firm to win the award.

Both Simon Turner and I were there to accept the trophy in front of the best real estate Brokers in the world. It was extremely humbling, exciting and very satisfying to receive the award which makes the hard work which we have all put in very worthwhile. The “Rookie Award” is awarded to the Luxury agency judged as the best in the world which has operated for a period of two years or less.

At a time when vendors are in desperate need of the very best advice it is great to be recognized as the very best at what we do. We have always believed in being realistic, telling our clients the truth about pricing, protecting their privacy and marketing their homes with the latest technology and strategies in mind.

I would personally like to thank the Governing Board of the Who’s Who in Luxury Real Estate for recognizing our commitment and achievements. I would also like to thank Simon Turner and Christine Watson for their total dedication in making this award possible and our clients, friends and families for their constant trust and support.

Michael Marquette

MORE INFORMATION:  Press release

Are You Tired of Losing Most of Your Hard Earned Commission?

Are you sick of subsidizing agents that do not perform as well as you do in your office? We are looking for the best of the best – those that are truly committed to leading the industry.

Don’t be left behind! Technology is at the centre of brand success and it is moving quickly and your brand must be recognized internationally as Luxurious. We have enormous demand throughout Australia and abroad which will only be looked after by the very best Brokers in real estate.

Companies like Google and Microsoft did not become corporate giants by having thousands of shop fronts bearing their name. In fact the world has changed remarkably and so has real estate. The selling power of the internet is now so enormous that many properties are sold without the need for expensive newspaper advertising – the power of brand association is essential.

It is estimated that real estate spending on advertising in newspapers will decrease by around 18% this year and this trend is likely to continue year after year.

So with all of this change are you making decisions that give you the best opportunity to earn the maximum amount possible? At Marquette Turner Luxury Homes our aim is simple – To provide our Licensees with their own business so that they can control their own destiny and to maximize the earning potential of every Broker within our business.

Many real estate offices pretend that you have your own business – in the typical or average real estate market. Luxury real estate is something special – Marquette Turner Luxury Homes is now recognized as the best in the world by the Who’s Who in Luxury Real Estate (Under 2 years old).

Michael Marquette

The latest release of the popular MTLH e-magazine, highlighting popular articles from the MTLH blog is now available for you to view online

We’ve seen financial dramas of historic proportions in the last week, but within the chaos there is much opportunity.  Marquette Turner Luxury Home’s articles seek to put the issues in perspective, and as ever we’re more than happy to let our feelings be known.

Both Michael Marquette and I are now in New York City eagerly anticipating next week’s Luxury Real Estate Awards in Philadelphia. Thus, this latest edition definitely shows a heavy interest in the going’s on in the US of A and the relevance to all of readers – Australian, American and the many more around the world – cannot be understated. Find out what’s happening, what’s interesting and what’s new: these are indeed curious times! Simon Turner

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SYDNEY, Australia, Sep 18. Australian Michael Marquette, founder of Marquette Turner Luxury Homes, is one of only two non-American Award Nominees for the 13th Annual Luxury Real Estate Conference to be held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA held Saturday, October 11th through Tuesday, October 14th, 2008!

One of only four international real estate agents nominated in the category of Outstanding Rookie, Michael Marquette will be joined at the award’s conference at the Ritz-Carlton by fellow agency founder Simon Turner.

Michael Marquette & Simon Turner

The Who’s Who in Luxury Real Estate is the most prestigious luxury real estate organization in the world, and its website LuxuryRealEstate.com is the most viewed luxury real estate portal in the world. The invitation-only industry peak body is made up of almost 6000 offices worldwide.

Marquette comments that “It is such an honour to have been initially invited to be a part of the exclusive Who’s Who, so to have been nominated for an award is truly humbling”.

He continues “As an Australian I’m very proud to have been recognized. With around 120,000 luxury real estate agents in 65 countries the Who’s Who is an amazing network and I’m thrilled and excited that our hard work has been noticed. What this nomination also demonstrates is what Simon Turner and myself have long believed, that Australian real estate deserves a forward thinking, savvy and luxury agency to showcase some of the stunning properties that our country has to offer to a worldwide audience.

Furthermore “The launch of our company and its success and recognition in just 18 months is testament to the belief of our clients and others important to us in what Marquette Turner Luxury Homes has to offer, and we look forward to further cementing our place in the market.”

Other top real estate industry awards to be awarded during the conference include the Lifetime Achievement Award, the Billionaires Club, Extraordinary Philanthropist, and the Biggest Sale in 2007.

Michael Marquette & Simon Turner are very much looking forward to meeting and learning from some of the world’s leading agent’s and the most influential people in Real Estate worldwide.

For more information please contact Michael Marquette on +61 433 170 170 or via email michael@Marquetteturner.com.au

LuxuryRealEstate.com, the luxury real estate website of the prestigious “Who’s Who in Luxury Real Estate” has been named as the world’s most prestigious real estate website by high-net-worth consumers in the 2008 Luxury Brand Status Index survey.

The survey was conducted by the Luxury Institute, an independent research company in New York City.

John Brian Losh, CEO/publisher of LuxuryRealEstate.com stated that “this study illustrates our dedication to high-end homebuyers and sellers in the United States and around the world.”

He goes on to say that “It’s an honour to receive such high praise from wealthy consumers. They demand only the finest properties and that’s exactly what we provide on our website.”

Since its creation in 1995 at the dawn of the Internet age, LuxuryRealEstate.com has been the most popular site in its field.

Michael Marquette, co-founder of Marquette Turner Luxury Homes goes on to say that “We are extremely proud to be one of the privileged few Australian agency’s to have been invited to be a part of this global network.  We are genuinely able to offer Australian’s a true choice to sell their luxury home.”

Furthermore, “With current market conditions meaning that showcasing a property to its very best is more important than ever, the client’s of MTLH are afforded the very best marketing available at absolutely no cost to them”.

Quite simply, such an advantage is priceless.  Marquette Turner’s luxury listings are showcased on Luxury Real Estate.com for the whole world to see.

Michael Marquette

Michael Marquette is also a frequent contributor to the LRE network’s personal thoughts section.  Read his latest articles

Montecito, California

Net Worth: $2.5 billion

The self-made media mogul paid $50 million in 2001 for the 23,000-square-foot Georgian-style home she calls the “Promised Land.” Last year the spread was appraised at just under $85 million. For such a public persona, Winfrey ferociously guards the privacy of her home, situated on 43 acres. At a Barack Obama fund raiser last year, guests were strictly prohibited from entering the house, and cameras were forbidden.

Oprah Winfrey’s home

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