Author Archives: PineProperty

What insurance should landlords and tenants have – and what do they cover?

Landlords and tenants are commonly incorrectly insured, underinsured, or think they are covered when they are not, according to a northern beaches insurance expert.

Common pitfalls are landlords and tenants thinking the other’s insurance will provide cover; insurance being rendered void because of a change of use by an existing tenant or a new tenant; and people not opting in for certain options such as flood cover, according to managing director of business insurance specialists, BIA Group, Andrew Herrett.

“Issues often arise because business insurance is more complex and tailored, whereas insurance packaged for consumers such as car or home insurance is generally simpler and offers broader coverage with more automatic inclusions,” he said.

“There are greater expectations on business owners and commercial property landlords. They are expected to understand a lot more about their responsibilities”.

What does your business insurance cover?

Landlord Insurance:

The level of cover varies between policies and insurers, however typical landlord insurance is limited to hard assets, loss of rent and liability. However, do not expect anything to be insured by default. Always double check.

Importantly, when insuring a building (for commercial, industrial or retail use), attention needs to be given to whose responsibility it is to cover which fixtures and fittings.

“If a tenant moves in and makes amendments: whether a renovation, upgrades or improvements, the landlord must understand who is covering these improvements and when the responsibility transfers from tenant to landlord.” Andrew said.

As a basic rule of thumb, whoever pays for it insures it. It would be the tenant’s internal contents insurance that would provide cover for what they own and operate within the confines of the landlord’s premises: from a kitchen fit-out, to upgrades to 3-phase power, to carpets, desks and computers.

“There should also be different layers of protection afforded the landlord in the tenant’s insurance which can provide the landlord more security,” Andrew said, adding that this means landlords should require their tenants show proof of insurance prior to their lease commencement and each year upon renewal.

Which insurances should landlords require of tenants?

Public Liability (Non-negotiable requirement):

In almost in all cases the tenant’s public liability insurance will include cover for the property they are tenanting (if they damage it). Additionally, if someone is injured as a consequence of the tenant’s activities, the right public liability policy will also protect the landlord should they be caught up in an action for the injury.

Internal Contents Insurance (Highly recommended requirement)

Covers the tenant’s property and improvements, including those items they might leave behind after expiry of their lease.

Cash Flow Cover / Business Interruption Insurance (Optional requirement)

Assists the tenants to meet their rental obligations following a loss or business interruption. This is often not insisted upon however should be looked upon favourably by landlords.

“Practically and commercially, the more you insist from a tenant, the more difficult it becomes to lease your property, however public liability insurance should be non-negotiable. Most standard leases automatically require tenants to have public liability and glass insurance,” Andrew said.

Insurance is subject to the tenant and their activities

Business insurance is based on the stated activities of the business. An accountant’s office carries a different level of risk to a mechanic’s workshop, to a hazardous materials storage facility.

“If you bring in a new tenant, or your tenant changes their operations and the landlord’s insurer is not notified, the landlord may be denied a claim”, Andrew said, adding that landlords should have “change of tenant and activities clauses” in their lease.

This not only provides the landlord an avenue for recovery should the tenant void the landlord’s insurances, however it also serves as a mechanism to recover increased costs in insurances for these changes.

Not having this clause or not knowing the tenant activities have changed is no excuse, according to Andrew.

“Landlords are expected to have a higher threshold of understanding these things and have checks in place such as a commercial property manager conducting routine inspections,” he said.

Furthermore, the insurer must be notified of any form of construction works and renovations. They will decide if that has any impact on policy coverage and pricing. Failure to notify them may result in a denied claim.

The landlord also has an obligation to keep the insurer informed of changes in insured values.  This goes for rental income figures and building replacement values.  Andrew warns all property owners to consider obtaining a Quantity Surveyor (QS) report to ascertain correct replacement values of the building insured.  Consider also that build costs have increased dramatically in recent years.

Floods Insurance

With the recent 2022 northern beaches floods, many businesses faced damage to stock and fixtures and fittings without insurance cover.

“Flood cover is something you must elect in. It is generally an optional extra and should be taken by the people who operate in a geographic position that lends itself to flood exposure,” Andrew said.

Net leases are preferred by landlords:

A net lease that charges outgoings (such as insurance) in addition to rent is the preferred option among landlords, rather than a gross lease that includes outgoings.

One reason is that if a tenant changes activities and attracts a higher insurance premium, that increase will be paid for by the tenant. However, if a gross lease is in place, then the landlord will face these increased premiums, unless there is an appropriate recovery clause in your lease.

Andrew also warns that if a landlord does not have a lease, or a tenant’s lease has expired and they roll onto a month-to-month lease, they are asking for trouble.

“There is no condition or requirement for a lease, but the absence of a lease creates risk. For example, you have no control over change of activities”.

Professional Assistance

Brokers: Given the complexities of business insurance, landlords and tenants are encouraged to engage a business insurance specialist such as BIA Group who will assist businesses in selecting insurance, and in doing so is an act of mitigating risk in and of itself. Several business packages can also be selected that offer wider cover across multiple risks.

Commercial Property Agents: Using a specialist commercial property agent with an understanding of the various risks and insurances for both landlord and tenant, and with processes in place to minimise the chance of an oversight is also highly recommended. Pine Property has numerous guides and checklists to help you consider your options.

Pocket Pizza Brookvale Structure Plan 2022

The New Brookvale – Structure Plan 2022

Once exclusively the domain of mechanics and construction supply companies, recent years has seen Brookvale transform from an industrial business district into a thriving cultural hub.

First it was the breweries such as 4 Pines and Nomads, along with a few brave restaurants. They attracted weekend crowds and saw Brookvale become a serious option as a destination.

Despite being tucked away in the back of Brookvale’s industrial district, their offering was solid and business boomed. They were quickly followed by others, including the more recent arrival of Manly Spirits Co, Barrell One Coffee Roasters, and the Brookvale Arts District (BAD) – an initiative that creates awareness around businesses, opportunities and activities in Brookvale.

2017 and 2022 Brookvale Structure Plan

In 2017, Warringah Council released the Brookvale Structure Plan, laying bare their intentions to transform the suburb into a desirable destination with mixed-use development including offices, retail, services and housing.

With manufacturing-related employment expected to decline, the Council announced it would rezone Brookvale’s industrial areas to allow for additional permitted uses and drive local jobs growth and a “net increase in employment floor space”.

For the past five years council has been analysing community feedback on the initial plan, and conducting employment and transport studies, to feed a revised 2022 Brookvale Structure Plan, scheduled for release this year.

As is often the case, the foundations of the original 2017 Brookvale Structure Plan are likely to remain, which will see a decline in exclusively industrial zoning, an increase in mixed use and commercial zoning, and an extension of the town centre with minimum levels of retail and commercial floor space. Maximum building heights are also set to increase – to 21m in the in the Town Centre straddling Pittwater Road, and 15m in the Transition Area, according to the 2017 plan.

Retail, while included to some extent in the Brookvale Structure Plan, will likely not be a primary focus, with Warringah Mall seen and supported as the major retail centre for the Northern Beaches. No changes have been proposed to Brookvale Oval or the adjoining park to the north.

Early Adopters and Where The Growth Will Be

To date, much of Brookvale’s art and cultural growth is in the gritty and grungy industrial district on the eastern side of Pittwater Road. However, with a large part of the Brookvale Structure Plan focused on activating the Town Centre, the future will also see increased demand for property on Pittwater Road.

For now, though, demand for property on Pittwater Road is coming from tenants who are unable to secure property in the industrial district due to zoning restrictions.

One such early adopter is Manly-based pizza icon, Pocket Pizza, who have a reputation for epic pizza, embracing low-fi, and drawing big crowds to non-traditional destinations, such as at their Manly restaurant on Pittwater Road.

Dylan Eisenhut, one of the Pocket Pizza founders, opened their Brookvale restaurant in March 2022 and said the suburb was the only location they considered for a second store.

“We only really had eyes for Brookvale. It is an emerging destination with breweries and speciality coffee and getting on board with that movement was a great opportunity”, he said.

“It was also a geographical decision. It was far enough away to expand our client base without consuming too much of our existing market, but close enough to take pressure of the Manly restaurant,” he added.

It was not all smooth sailing though. They worked for five months trying to secure a 140sqm site in Brookvale’s industrial district on the eastern side of Pittwater Road, however the restricted zoning there saw them settle on a 30-seat restaurant with a separate takeaway section on Pittwater Road.

“It is going great. We are expanding our client base and building a name in Brookvale where there will be big population growth,” Dylan said, adding that he is keeping an eye on the Brookvale Structure Plan to continue with Pocket Pizza’s business plan.

“Our long-term vision for Brookvale is to establish a large manufacturing kitchen that is both a restaurant for locals and able to service multiple smaller sites.”

Small Business and Inflation

Small business strategies for managing inflation, supply chain and staffing challenges

It is no secret that inflation is wreaking havoc on Australian small business in 2022.

The cost of goods and services rose 2.1 per cent over the March 2022 quarter, lifting the annual inflation rate to 5.1 per cent and triggering a pre-election interest rate rise.

A combination of factors have contributed to this inflation, many of them related to COVID which saw huge cash handouts in stimulus packages, supply chain challenges, and labour shortages, combined with cheap debt due to historically low interest rates.

In some industries, such as construction, materials costs have gone up 100 per cent, according to Paul Groenendyk, a CPA and Director of Dee Why accounting firm, Mair, Mansfield and Co.

“Prices have increased for all businesses, both from a materials shortage perspective and in labour costs,” Paul says.

While Australia’s quarterly Wage Price Index is not announced until May 18, 2022, Paul says he doesn’t need the Index to know that wages are increasing.

“Just by looking at the businesses I deal with I can see there is quite a bit of movement. A lot of businesses are losing staff, and not just to competitors offering higher wages, but to different industries. There is definitely some truth to the great resignation,” he said, adding that the impact of this is exacerbated by a shortage of foreign workers.

How inflation quickly impacts business profit

For those businesses who operate on lower profit margin products sold at high volume, a 5 per cent increase in costs can quickly erode their profit margin, Paul says.

Giving the example of a business with a $1 million annual million turnover at 10 per cent net profit ($100,000), Paul explains how only a 5 per cent increase in costs will reduce that net profit to $55,000 and a 10 per cent increase will reduce it to $10,000.

“Now, more than ever, businesses must be acutely aware of their financials. You must deeply understand your business income and expenditure, both today and in a variety of forecasted scenarios, so you can adjust your pricing accordingly. You do not want to get to a point where you are not making a profit.”

Strategies to minimise risk

Raise your prices: This is the obvious response, however raising your prices carries the risk that customers who have grown accustomed to paying a lower price will take their business elsewhere or purchase less often.

Paul suggests clearly explaining to your customers that your costs have gone up and that you have absorbed this cost increase until now, but that you are unable to continue to do that and remain in business.

He also suggests considering a staggered price increase to minimise the shock, and encourages price rises to be considered and calculated to account for both your financials, and competition.

Avoid fixed price jobs: Pauls warns against fixed price jobs, especially in times of inflation. If you have a long job delivery window and your costs increase during that time, then you may lose money on that job.

Reduce inventory lines: You can look to reduce low-margin goods or services and focus on delivering those with higher margins. This is especially beneficial when you have a lack of staff, so they can focus their time on more profitable work.

Increase stock: If a product is seeing high inflation, buying and holding more stock can help increasing your competitiveness, or profit margin. Stockpiling critical supplies can also minimise the risk of disruption from supply chain issues.

Evaluate your supply chain risk: Consider establishing alternative supply chains and suppliers – both domestic and foreign.

Watch your debt: Be diligent on credit checks, credit limits, invoicing, and payment terms.

Prospecting Commercial Real Estate

Why the Prospect’s Mindset is Crucial to Commercial Real Estate

Understanding the mindset and unique requirements of your various prospects and pre-emptively or quickly delivering information that meets these is critical in commercial real estate.

This core skill separates high performing agents from the competition and is built from experience working with various prospect personas and having the empathy to understand their mindset and unearth their true desires.

Different prospects will have different mindsets, based on what they are trying to achieve, how you came to be communicating with them, past experiences, and countless other unknown inputs.

Common mindsets include that your prospects are busy, they feel interrupted, they are wondering who you are and how you differ from the competition, and they want to know what is in it for them.

All of these must be considered and addressed within the first few sentences of communication, as well as any other prospect-specific mindsets, to show you understand your customers and can efficiently satisfy their requirements.

For example, a prospect looking for premises to establish a new restaurant will have a different mindset and requirements than one looking to establish an industrial business.

Being able to quickly understand and address your prospect’s mindset and pain points is crucial.

Know Your Prospect:

This is particularly important when canvassing for potential operators for a listed property. The appropriate target prospects must be identified based on internal database and external research. Both the individual prospect and their business must be deeply understood.

If you contact a prospect without this context and you present an opportunity that is not tied to their requirements or mindset, then the opportunity is lost, along with the likelihood of any future business with that person.

And given that prospects will likely want to know how your service or listing differs from competitors or the property down the street, it is important to know how to address that in relation to your prospect’s mindset and desires, or any negotiations will be reduced to price.

Qualification with the Right Questions:

Understanding the prospect’s mindset also requires asking the right questions to uncover their true requirements, which are often different to what they state – or even think – they are.

It is then equally important to set expectations. You owe it to yourself and the prospect to ensure that what they are looking for is achievable, and it is important to uncover that early on in to avoid disappointment and lost deals.

This often-delicate process requires gently educating clients on market conditions through comparable properties and by delivering insight into planning, zoning, emerging omni-channel retail trends, and commercial real estate processes, to build trust and long-term relationships.

Essentially, you need to show them that what you have meets their requirements, and if it does not, then show them you are the best person to find and deliver something that does.

The importance of Knowledge and Network

By delivering on the above processes, and meeting your prospect’s requirements, the relationships you develop will provide even deeper insights into their mindset.

This growth in Knowledge and Network enables you to continually deliver improved and tailored services that intuitively cater for the desires of your prospects.

At Pine Property, our eight-plus years of operation and decades of experience in Northern Beaches commercial real estate has given us deep insight into the local market, including tenants, landlords and local government planning controls. This enables us to quickly match prospects with relevant properties while also continually committing to driving new relationships.

Pine Property Sponsors Queenscliff Surf Club

Queensie Surf Club secures State Championships. Will be “best event we’ve ever had”.

As proud sponsors of the Queenscliff Surf Life Saving Club (QSLSC) since 2016, Pine Property is pleased to announce that the club has secured the rights to host the NSW Surf Life Saving Championships from 2022-24.

After five years based at Lake Macquarie, the event finally returns to Sydney from 24 February to March 13, 2022, with events across Freshwater, Queenscliff and North Steyne beaches.

The announcement is great news for local businesses with the economic benefit for the region forecast to be well over $10 million through accommodation, hospitality and associated spend, from the 21,000-plus expected attendees.

More than 6500 competitors aged 8 to 70-plus, all of them volunteer surf lifesavers from over 100 clubs in NSW, will attend the event and compete for the State titles.

Northern Beaches Mayor, Mayor Regan said: “This major event will drive our local economy and support local businesses as they recover from the Covid-19 pandemic – especially our hospitality and accommodation providers.

“What a cracking event and something to really look forward to after two years of, basically, crap,” he added.

And Manly MP James Griffin hinted that there may be more to come with council’s strategy to secure large, high-profile, and sustainable northern beaches events to help the economy rebound strongly after a challenging 18 months.

“It will be of enormous benefit to businesses big and small, in Manly, and up and down the northern beaches,” he said.

Pine Property Director, Patrick Kelleher said it is an amazing achievement for the local club Pine Property has sponsored for the last seven years, and a great outcome for local businesses and residents.

“With the club’s unique position overlooking the iconic Queenscliff Beach, and with a newly renovated bar, gym and function space, it is the perfect spot to hold the Championships.”

Competitors will contest a range of events including swim, ski, board and ironman/woman racing, through to beach sprints, flags, relays and surfboats. Other events include the Champion Lifesaver, first aid and rescue/resuscitation competition.

Prominent competitors include Kendrick Louis (Manly LSC) and Jemma Smith (Newport SLSC) who both feature prominently on the national professional Ironperson circuit, as well as former and aspiring Olympians for whom Surf Life Saving is still their greatest passion.

Surf Life Saving NSW President, George Shales said: “We’re certain that 2022 will produce the best event we’ve ever had.”

About Queenscliff Surf Live Saving Clun (QSLSC)

Nestled on the sand of the iconic Queenscliff beach, “Queensie Surf Club” is a club for the whole family that is supported by an incredible local community.

Perfect to involve the kids in nippers, host a function, or tie the knot, the club has a newly renovated bar, gym and function space.

Please contact us if you have any questions, would like to tour the facilities, book a function, or join. We are quite happy to assist.

Pine Property Satellite Office

COVID drives satellite offices and Neighbourhood Business Districts

Businesses with CBD offices are increasingly reducing their city property footprint and factoring satellite offices into their property plans and portfolios, according to a leading work futurist.

Speaking to Pine Property, PwC Australia Future of Work Lead, Ben Hamer, said the satellite office trend has been driven by the pandemic and initially began with cafes and co-working spaces.

“Because we are talking about 10-year leases, people were not making quick decisions, it has taken a couple of years,” Hamer said.

Having now recognised that remote and hybrid working is here to stay, businesses are increasingly downsizing their CBD tenancy footprint and buying co-working licenses or securing their own property in “neighbourhood business districts”.

As we return to the workplace, people will not want to return to long commutes and will be looking to work closer to home.

“However, they still want a formal workplace. They still want that connection. And it doesn’t need to be with their immediate team,” Hamer said, before cautioning businesses who resist the change.

Businesses must adopt or lose staff

“Employers have to offer flexible working arrangements. What we are seeing is that if they don’t, then employees are just leaving,” Hamer said.

“A lot of organisations tried to mandate a return to the workplace pre-omicron and people just quit in response to that. People have had autonomy, choice and control and you cannot just force people back into the office. It really rubs people the wrong way. They feel like they are not trusted.”

Where will neighbourhood business districts be based?

Hamer expects that neighbourhood business districts will be built on the precinct city planning model where there is appropriate infrastructure to support their growth.

“People still want to come together where the action is. And they require ample access to childcare, education, health, hospitality, transport and a high concentration of liveable amenities such as bars, pubs and cinemas,” Hamer said.

In Sydney, he described suburbs such as Chatswood, Parramatta, Liverpool, Bondi and Manly as being good examples of where businesses could secure property for satellite offices.

Hamer expects demand for commercial property in neighbourhood business districts to steadily increase over the next few years.

The 3 stages in the transition to neighbourhood business districts:

Australia is currently stage 2.

  1. Employees work remotely in local cafes
  2. Businesses rent co-working spaces in neighbourhood business districts for their staff
  3. Organisations procure their own office space in neighbourhood business districts as satellite offices become a permanent working arrangement.

Is the CBD dead?

While commercial property prices in the CBD have been dropping, Hamer believes they will bounce back with an influx of new and diverse tenants that will ultimately drive innovation.

“We are seeing small and medium sized businesses who have previously been priced out of the CBD and based on the city fringe – think Surry Hills – now able to jump into the city and take up tenancies. It is already happening, and it will happen more often,” he said.

Retaining staff amid The Great Resignation

Even with a flexible satellite office working model, it may not be enough for businesses to retain staff who have tasted better work-life balance.

They have also seized the balance of power amid low unemployment rates and a lack of competition from skilled migrants who have been unable to enter the country.

The result has been dubbed The Great Resignation, with a November 2021 PwC Australia report titled What workers want: Winning the war for talent, stating that “Australian organisations are about to see people walking out the door.”.

“It is happening globally. In the US on a significant scale and it is on its way up here in Australia and will peak in the next couple of months,” Hamer said.

“People have re-evaluated the role of work in their life. They have changed their perspective around working as many hours as they did.”

The report, which Hamer co-authored, cites three priorities that businesses must focus on when creating an Employer Value Proposition (EVP) to attract and retain staff:

  1. Working alongside good co-workers
  2. Work-life balance
  3. Pay

However, even getting these right will be unlikely to retain younger generations who pursue a career or role changes in search of new experiences, even if they like their team and current role.

Christmas Gift Guide 2021

The countdown is officially on until Christmas and following a year of difficult trade, one of the best ways to demonstrate support and thanks after a challenging year, is to opt for local during one of the busiest buying periods. 

We’ve pulled together a guide full of opportunities to support small this season and has a few of our personal favourites too! 

Experiences:

Buying an experience for someone generates positive memories. The joy and memories of experiences, from crazy adventures to minute encounters last a lifetime. 

Kiss My Axe:

Urban Axe throwing! Yes you heard us correctly, get a bunch of your mates together and have the opportunity to throw solid steel axes at wooden targets. What a great way to Kiss the year od 2021 goodbye!

P: 1300 MY AXES 

A: 40 Winbourne Road, Brookvale 

A Night at the Barracks:

Enjoy a night under the stars in one of Sydney’s most iconic locations perched high above Sydney Harbour. There’s choice of music, theatre, ballet, dance, rock, opera and jazz experiences. This is one you don’t want to miss. 

A: The Barracks, North Head

Manly Kayak Centre:

Explore the beautiful harbour beaches around Manly and Sydney Harbour or take a guided tour and paddle to some of the most spectacular look out points. 

P: 0412 622 662

A: Manly Wharf, E Esplanade Manly NSW 2095

Northern beaches Brewery Tours:

For the lovers of beer, this one’s for you. The Northern Beaches is now home to some of the best craft breweries. The tour starts in Manly and travels right up the coast to Mona Vale. You will definitely be frothing over this tour. 

P: 0484 308 572

Bare Beauty House:

I think we all deserve (need) some sprucing about the year we’ve had. From facials, massages, body scrubs to a full day spa experience, Bare Beauty can provide all your hair & beauty needs. 

P: (02) 8593 0264

A: 35 Pittwater Road, Manly

Manly Sculpture School:

Have you ever fancied trying your hand at sculpture? Well here’s your chance. There is a range of different classes, from one off workshops to 10-week courses, plus you get to sip and sculpt at the same time. Winning! 

P: 0433 507 419

A: 19 North Fort Road, Manly

Unwrap Me:

Who doesn’t love the joy of unwrapping! For most of us, unwrapping gifts is one of the best parts of Christmas day…maybe even more so than the gift itself. So, for all those that love to gift something for someone to unwrap, here are great places to get a special gift from.  

Budgy Smuggler:

Why be boring when you’re taking a dip when you can make a splashy statement! Budgy Smuggler is now available for the whole family, with the range covering men’s, women’s and kids – you can even be that matchy matchy family if you like.

P: 0404 026 836

A: 1A/22 Darley Road Manly

Tula Buba:

Looking for something unique for the kids, Tula Buba is home to some of the most beautiful baby and children’s products, including gifts for the stylish mums about town. 

P: 0433 747 270

A: 53 Sydney Road, Manly

Village Home & Gifts:

Village Home & Gifts offers beautifully curated homewares – you’ll be spoilt for choice. They have a passion for colour, design and decorating. Don’t be surprised if you leave there for a gift for yourself too! 

P: 0416 276 678

A: 51 Sydney Road, Manly

Misfit World Meets:

Here you’ll find a collection of emerging Australian and international street and surf brands. 

P: (02) 8095 8899

A: 195-197 Pittwater Road, Manly

Manly Longboard Co.

An icon to Manly’s surf heritage, there is a great range of tees, tanks, tops, caps, towels, accessories and stickers for all of the family. 

P: +61 9977 0093

A: 42 Sydney Road Manly

Sammy & Sid:

Are you after some fabulous designer, pre loved, vintage and timeless pieces? Well look no further than Sammy & Sid. Here you will have no trouble finding a suitable gift for someone who loves all things fashion. 

P: (02) 8964 9520

A: 149 Pittwater Road, Manly 

Poppies and Amber:

Let’s be honest, any occasion is appropriate for giving flowers because they provide the perfect way to brighten someone’s day and Christmas is no exception. Poppies and Amber also have a range of plants and giftwares too. 

P: 0420 950 040 

A: 22A Darley Road, Manly

Saint Valentine:

If you want to make an impression on that special female in your life <mum, sister, girlfriend, friend, mother in law or yourself> pop into Saint Valentine. They have a range of beautiful, modern timeless pieces of jewellery that will definitely be a winner under the Christmas tree. 

P: (02) 9977 1193

A: 47 Sydney Road, Manly 

Humphreys:

If you are the type to leave things to the last minute at Christmas, well then Humphrey’s will save the day. They sell everything from quality gifts, toys, books, confectionary, stationary and arts & crafts. And if you still can’t decide from the array of options, then buy everyone a lottery ticket. 

P: (02) 9977 1699

A: 60-62 The Corso, Manly

Kidstuff: 

We guarantee you will find something for the little people in your life at Kids Stuff. Shop the best of toy brands, educational toys and lots of fun eclectic novelties too. 

P: (02) 7207 6239

A: 19-23 The Corso, Manly 

Bow & Arrow: 

A beautifully curated boutique, offering vibrant creations for the home, studio or your wardrobe.  

P: 0411 081 732

A: 15 Whistler Street, Manly  

Manly Aquarium World: 

If you are one of the few left, that did not purchase a dog during lockdown, then perhaps you could give a fish a home instead? Manly Aquarium World has a vast range of options from buying your first fish to building an entire underwater landscape! 

P: (02) 9977 1758

A: 3 Pittwater Road, Manly 

Office Space Northern Beaches

‘The Great Resignation’ is coming and why the office will help you retain staff

The COVID pandemic has caused huge changes to how and where we work, with companies globally transitioning to remote and hybrid working models, mostly without seeing a loss in productivity.  

And as economies open back up, things will not return to how they were. In America, there has been a boom of businesses opening up satellite office spaces in the suburbs, with companies eager to accommodate employees who are reluctant to return to long commutes.

Those businesses who don’t adapt, will likely see staff leave.

This is largely because the pandemic has seen a perspective shift among workers, whose values have become more aligned with improved work-life balance.

The Great Resignation:

As a result of this perspective shift, companies globally are facing “The Great Resignation”, and it is coming to Australia.

Speaking to the ABC’s This Working Life Podcast in September 2021, Behavioural Scientist at Gartner, Aaron McEwan said: “We are seeing a seismic shift in the movement of talent. People have been deeply reflecting on what’s important to them.”

Companies globally are seeing widescale cases of people quitting or changing jobs. And it is happening at every level, from retail workers to senior executives.

“The movement of talent is so significant and so sharp that its different to probably anything we have seen in living memory,” McEwan said.

That includes wanting more than a transactional worker relationship. Instead, workers are considering how their employer makes them feel? Whether they are proud to work there. And whether they are supported and invested in, he added.

“They are things that have been well underway for a long time, but the pandemic has accelerated that shift.”

He said that while Australia is a little bit behind due to the way COVID played out here, their research shows the Great Resignation will hit in March 2022.

“It will be a movement of talent that I am think we are unprepared for,” he said, adding that it will significantly impact many businesses’ growth ambitions.

However, many businesses are preparing, and retaining workers was described as one of the top strategic priorities for businesses in a 2021 Gartner report.

Why working from an office can actually help retain staff

Paradoxically, despite many people’s desire to work from home, working in an office is good for us, largely due to social bonding and friendships with colleagues.

In fact, 2018 Gallup research found that workplace friendships resulted in a decreased likelihood in looking for other job opportunities, or to accept a job offer if approached.

Other benefits of workplace friendships include:

>Increased motivation to work

>Increased likelihood to take risks that could lead to innovation

>Stronger networks and future career opportunities

>Increased likelihood to have a positive experience at work

>Decreased likelihood to have a negative experience at work

This is backed up by data analysis conducted by Glassdoor on millions of company reviews that found ‘great co-workers’ and a ‘good work environment’ are, respectively, the two most important attributes of a job.

The rise of suburban offices

Despite the social benefits of working in an office, many workers will understandably want to avoid a long daily commute to a distant desk, which is why urban office spaces are flourishing.

They offer all the social community benefits of an office, without the travel time. However they must not sacrifice good workplace design, which should foster a positive workplace culture with an environment that enables staff to come together – collaborate, exchange ideas, share knowledge and belong to a team.

Ultimately, employees should feel that their workplace environment fosters wellbeing and strengthens team bonds, both physically and using online tools.

In fact, there is no one-size-fits-all solution and the ideal office for your business will vary based on which roles are most important, how much collaboration is necessary, where other offices are located, the size of your team and numerous other factors.

Given the excellent lifestyle attributes of Manly and the Northern Beaches, combined with the factors discussed in this article, Pine Property expects already high demand for suburban office space to increase into 2022 and beyond.

To learn more about the availability of suitable office suites for establishing your regional office, please contact Pine Property today.

Northern Beaches Business COVID reopen

9 COVID-reopening strategies for Northern Beaches businesses

After a difficult few month of forced closures or drastically restricted trading, Northern Beaches restaurants, pubs, hairdressers, gyms and other businesses are now open to fully vaccinated people.

Some restrictions remain, with patron density limits and mandatory face masks for staff and customers in all indoor settings. In outdoor settings masks are only required to be worn by staff.

Patron QR code check-ins and proof of vaccination is required, however the Service NSW “vaccine passport” app designed to help businesses manage this is not yet operational, meaning Medicare vaccine certificates will need to be used for checking vaccination status.

Further loosening of restrictions for the vaccinated is expected when 80 per cent of over 16-year-old NSW residents are vaccinated, while from 1 December the unvaccinated will see more freedoms and office-based businesses will no longer be required to let staff work from home.

Regardless, some rules will remain, such as mask-wearing and a maximum density of one person per two square metres. Rules that have seen other countries like Italy successful exit lockdowns without case numbers surging again.

Very strong Christmas spending forecasted

The good news is that the leadup to Christmas and the holiday period I, on the basis that vaccine rates increase to allow more shopper mobility, shows every indication that we will see a much stronger year for retailers. Extended lockdowns, travel restrictions and low interest rates have created a perfect storm of cashed up and excited consumers ready to spend, according to CEO of the Retail Doctor Group, and Manly resident, Brian Walker.

To help businesses capitalise on the predicted surge of consumer spending, Brian offered the following nine strategies.

Stock up: With the expected influx of spending, ensuring you have enough stock on hand, or available through robust supply chains (which are already strained due to COVID) will help capitalise on strong demand, according to Brian.

“Be prepared to invest in the right products for your customers. If you are strong in a certain category and have proven history there, all conditions are there for a very robust Christmas and New Year sales period,” he said.

Invest in your staff: Along with stock shortages, staffing shortages will likely be the greatest challenge for retailers over Christmas, according to Brian. Existing staff will also be under more pressure, so he encourages businesses to invest in training and support mechanisms and to beware of employee  fatigue.

Support local residents (and businesses): With residents restricted from leaving their LGA, COVID saw a rise in community and a return of the local high street.

“Our Retail Doctor Group studies have shown consumer relationships with their local community and retailer of choice is now stronger than ever,” Brian said, adding that retailers should employ sales and marketing strategies to continue strengthening that local relationships.

Prepare for an influx of local tourists: People can now leave their local LGAs, but cannot travel interstate of overseas, meaning destination regions like Manly and the Northern Beaches will see an influx of visitors, Brian said.

“It has all the classic elements of being extremely busy, so retailers should also develop sales and marketing strategies that are tailored to those expected visitors.”

Consider a facelift: People are fatigued after months of lockdowns and so are going to look for something fresh and interesting, according to Brian.

“Dress up the window, give your shop a coat of paint, freshen up your menu or drinks list. Give people something new and exciting,” he said.

Don’t neglect online: While lockdowns may be ending, it does not mean the end of online, which has grown to  an average of 15 per cent of total spend from an average of  9 per cent pre-COVID, Brian said.

Ensure your website, online ordering, home delivery and other digital business tools are not neglected as people return to premises.

Be proudly COVID-safe: Customers are expected to shy away from businesses that are not clearly COVID compliant, so ensure your processes for managing check ins, masks, social distancing, hand sanitiser and other strategies are polished, and don’t be afraid to promote it.

Marketing: Marketing strategies that welcome customers back with announcements around the strategies outlined in this article, and promote your COVID-safe compliance, will serve you well.

Brian also encourages all businesses to have their own CRM database, to manage email, social media and other communication tools to customers.  Focus on lifetime customer value as distinct from that one transaction

Consider your insurance: Businesses have a duty of care to provide a safe environment for their customers and their staff, which extends to COVID protection measures. Insurances like Workers Compensation and Public Liability Insurance are designed to offer some protection, however they have been largely untested with COVID claims, so it is prudent to check with your insurer or broker

What is the future of retail?

Asked about his vision for 2022 and beyond, Brian said that he expects consumers to continue returning to good retail businesses, but for online and omni-channel to also remain a strong part of the buyer journey.

“Physical retail is a very important part of consumers lifestyles. Retail is a human experience. People want to see, touch, smell, look at and talk to people and products. They also enjoy the habitual behaviour that shopping brings. It is part of our DNA and the social fabric of our communities.”

COVID Crowds

What other countries tell us about how/when businesses will re-open?

In Europe, the UK and the US, regions previously among the hardest-hit by COVID-19, life is surging back to normal.

It’s a new normal, certainly, but people are shopping, dining out, visiting cinemas and theatres, travelling. Cities are opening up and showing the parts of the world still lurching between lockdowns what a roadmap out can look like.

It’s no secret that it is the high vaccination rates that are making the return to normalcy possible: in the European Union, 70 per cent of the adult population has been fully vaccinated, while in the UK that number is 79 per cent and in the US, 64 per cent

This has given governments the confidence to lift restrictions, and residents the confidence to go out and enjoy their new freedoms. In Italy, for example – once the European epicentre of the pandemic and now boasting a 5 per centvaccination rate – life is (COVID) normal.

Indoor restaurants and bars, sporting events, museums, theaters, swimming pools, gyms, spas, festivals, fairs and amusement parks are open to those who have received at least one vaccine dose, recovered from COVID-19 or tested negative – a status evidenced by their Green Pass. 

The vaccine passport

The Green Pass, Italy’s version of a vaccine passport, is a key element of the new normal. In many countries in Europe, as well as in New York City, these are required to gain access to indoor dining, gyms, performances and some stores.

These passports mean people feel confident coming back into these venues, bolstered by other measures including (depending on the country) indoor mask mandates, square-metre rules and check in processes. 

Offices in Europe, the UK and the US are also filling up again, with some caveats. Increasing numbers of companies require returning office staff to be vaccinated and some encourage mask wearing indoors.

Office spaces look different too, with plastic partitions between desks becoming popular, two-metre distances between desks and bottles of hand sanitiser alongside the tea and coffee canisters. 

While remote working will remain a possibility for a percentage of organisations, hybrid or full-time office hours are likely to be the reality worldwide, especially for smaller firms, which studies show are most likely to return to the office. As a result, demand for office spaces remains much stronger than was anticipated during the early days of the pandemic. 

Closer to home

Here in Australia, where much of the country is swinging in and out of lockdowns, we find ourselves victims of our own early success with the pandemic.

Complacency and a government who insisted the vaccine was “not a race” have led to low vaccine uptake, and only 37 per cent of our population over the age of 16 is fully vaccinated.

However, in NSW – where much of the population has been under lockdown since June 23 – the vaccine rollout has picked up speed.

More than 7 million doses had been administered as of September 2, giving us 71 per cent of the population with at least one dose and 39 per cent with both. With steadily rising numbers of vaccinations, we’re looking to Europe to see what the future holds.

Opening Up:

When NSW hits a fully vaccinated rate of 70 per cent, which is expected to happen by mid-October, we can expect the easing of many restrictions and the reopening of businesses. 

Eighty per cent, which is likely by late October, is touted as the target at which things will begin to return to a truer sense of normality so by November we can expect to be living freely. 

Restaurants will open for eat-in with an emphasis on alfresco dining, sporting events will allow spectators, and hair and beauty salons will get back to work, to the relief of everyone with lockdown haircuts.

Local boutiques, weekend markets, pubs, cafes and makers spaces will also be able to welcome their customers and communities once again.

Our new normal looks different to our pre-COVID world, however, based on the successful reopening of countries with strong vaccine rollouts, it’s something we can all look forward to.