AIPP speaks to Brazil in Salvador
A relatively new market for UK and Irish buyers, Brazil is fast-becoming one of the property world's talking points. AIPP was invited to Brazil to talk to agents, developers and government officials about working with the buyers in the UK and Ireland.
Last week in Salvador at the ADIT Nordeste Invest 07 conference for Brazilian developers and agents, Paul Owen of the AIPP was part of a presentation team on the needs of the British and Irish property buyers in Brazil. Invited by the organisers, ADIT, to sit on a panel chaired by Kerry Clark of Tideway Communications, Owen was joined by the Brazilian Ambassador to Ireland and Mike Holwill, Brazil Director of UK agent Someplace Else.
With 180 people in attendance, Clark opened the presentation with an overview of the British market and the obsession with property ownership. Using personal anecdotes to illustrate the increase in prices over the past 20 years, Clark made clear the attraction of property to the UK buyer.
‘The organisers had made clear that most Brazilians have little or no knowledge of the UK buyer and their motivations,’ explained Clark. ‘I tried to make the ‘why we buy’ clear to them and to throw some light on how to market to these buyers.’
The Brazilian Ambassador to Ireland spoke of the Irish hunger for overseas property investment as well as second homes but highlighted the arduous 24-hour journey he had undertaken from Dublin to Salvador, via London and Lisbon. He urged local government and developers to open negotiations with the airlines as soon as possible.
Owen’s speech focused on how developers and agents should forge successful business links with agents in the UK. He was clear on some of the pitfalls for Brazilian companies eyeing the UK market: ‘There are good agents in the market and there are bad ones. As developers, you face the same issue as buyers: how to tell one from the other. One will make you money, the other will lose you money and credibility. You can’t afford to choose the wrong ones.’
Mike Holwill, of Someplace Else, talked of the need for Brazilian developers to focus on exactly what type of buyer they wish to attract. ‘There is the holiday home buyer and the investment buyer; they have very different needs and use different criteria when making their buying decision. Whilst we cater for both groups, Someplace Else has a greater proportion of investors as Clients and, at present, it is these buyers who are showing a great interest in Brazil.’
In his presentation, Owen highlighted the benefits of working with AIPP Members and made clear the difference of membership. ‘Companies have already been vetted by us, they have signed up to industry standard training and they have voluntarily committed themselves to a professional Code of Conduct.’
However, he added some words of qualification when asked by an attendee how the AIPP can police unfounded claims in advertising. ‘We do not claim we have solved all the ills of the market nor will we be able to do this in the near future. However, the best way to improve this market is to freeze out the companies who do not work professionally or make clear that this market will not tolerate behaviour such as misleading statements to buyers. That can only be achieved by uniting as an industry and taking a collective message to the UK and Irish buyer: companies have to work a certain way or you should not buy from them. AIPP Members have to work that way.’