9 ADDISON TAY
Ausin Group (Finance),
Total value of residential loans
FY 2014/15: $157,075,545
Total number of residential loans
FY 2014/15: 340
The term ‘international financier’ is generally something you associate with bankers – but that’s exactly what Addison Tay is. He’s part of the Ausin Group, which caters to mainland Chinese who want to invest in Australian property, and is one of a growing number who are combining quality broking with the jet-set lifestyle.
In fact, Tay flies to China every other month to present to potential investors. In some ways, his job is straightforward: “Generally, the customer wants to know what they can get … they want to know what is the best option for them.” However, catering to rate-conscious customers can be difficult when there are relatively few banks that lend to non-residents.
Foreign investors have become a scapegoat for many of Australia’s housing problems over recent years, with the government introducing fees and tightening rules for foreign investors. As Tay’s clients generally have already dealt with Australian estate agents, these changes aren’t a problem for him: “I can see the volume is still there; it’s not really turned off the market – the market is still very big overseas internationally.” Of course, Tay has a large number of potential clients to draw from: “These are the top earners in the country; the population is 1.3 billion, so even if we do 1% of the millionaires it’s a lot.”
Tay’s foreign investor clients are generally high net worth investors, looking to build property portfolios not only in Australia but across the world. They are demanding, however, and want a quick turnaround time; it therefore helps that Tay is in the elite broker groups of many banks. It’s not the only advantage he has: “Being multilingual is an advantage … the clients have to rely on what you tell them so you need to present in a professional way to be successful.” Tay also gives credit to Ausin’s support team – broking is a “team effort”, he insists.
For brokers whose vision also stretches beyond Australia’s shores, Tay warns that “you can’t just talk to them on the phone: you really need to travel to the customer, meet the customer. It’s not that easy; you need to understand the culture as well … they need to see you, trust you, and then you’ll get referrals from then on.”