With a qualified depth of knowledge and experience built through over 35 years in property, McAndrew Property Group’s expertise extends across all facets of residential Real Estate and at Inertia we have been working with the team on some recent townhouse projects.
We recently caught up with Matthew McAndrew to find out a bit more about his business and what he makes of the current Brisbane residential and commercial market.
Matthew McAndrew is responsible for overseeing the property development and development consultancy side of the company, taking a hands-on approach to ensuring the success of each project. His entire working life has been within the property industry and the relationships he has built with key partners over the last 19 years have strengthened his success in the industry.
Tell us about your business.
First and foremost, we are a family business, having been set up by my father, John, in 1985 as an evolution of his successful home improvement and maintenance company Mister Green. Mister Green enabled my father to make his first foray into property investment, a $27,000 purchase on Lutwyche Road that was home to the business until 2008.
Now, 34 years later, we are a vertically integrated business that can do everything required to take a project from concept through to sale. From site assessment and identification to project marketing and sales, we can do everything under one roof or in partnership with key organisations like Inertia. And that has been the key to our growth which has seen us recognised on the AFR Fastest 100 in 2015, 2016 and 2017.
What projects are you currently working on?
We have got some major residential projects on the go at the moment, including townhouse and land subdivision developments as well as the commercial development of a service station.
What projects are in your portfolio that you are particularly proud of?
It is hard to limit it to just one project; we are always proud of what we do and what we help our clients to achieve. But we do like a challenging project and one that springs to mind is a development of 100 Townhouses in Doolandella.
We worked with an international client, and the site was extremely complex from an approvals perspective, particularly concerning infrastructure which involved providing additional parkland, connecting into public roads and upgrading the road network to support the eventual users of the development.
To go through a complex approvals process and end up creating a new development that families will call home for generations is always rewarding.
What are the trends you see in residential construction in Brisbane and South-East Queensland?
Two things spring to mind, consolidation and quality.
Consolidation because the market is challenging and we are seeing smaller outfits who came into the industry at the peak, expecting to make an easy dollar are quickly disappearing, and that is a good thing because it leads to quality as experience comes to the fore.
The market is demanding better quality than ever and rightly so, people don’t want to purchase or invest in inferior quality products or rush developments that were merely about creating as many blocks on a smaller site as possible.
And financially, the banks will not lend to developers who are unproven in the market and don’t have a track record of success.
So I am very optimistic about the future, development is never easy, despite what people think, and with a market, financiers and councils demanding quality then we will see improvement in design and amenities across the board.
To what do you attribute your success?
Our core values, which are based on our family values. Integrity and honesty, easy words to say, but tough ones to live by. If we say we can do something we will do it, if we can’t do something we are honest enough to say no. In the development business saying yes and making it up as you go along is a recipe for failure.
To put it in perspective, we still take care of jobs that were completed over 30 years ago for our home improvement clients. If he gave his word that something will be taken care of, it will and for the life of his promise.
What is unique about your business?
Our values are essential in so much as we believe that we walk away from every completed project shaking hands with our clients and knowing that all parties would happily work together if the opportunity arose.
What is it about real estate and development that fires your passion?
We get to leave a legacy. Taking a block of land, creating a vision of what it can become and turning that vision into homes in which families can make memories is fantastic. I think those of us in the industry all know that feeling that you get when you drive past something you have developed and can be proud of the legacy created.
Why do you like working with the team at Inertia?
They bring to every project a fantastic attitude to problem-solving and always look at what can be done, what the possibilities are and what the best outcome will be. It is never about looking to apportion blame or hiding from a challenge, the team at Inertia thrive on that and the tougher the challenge the better.
If you had one piece of advice to someone just starting their career, what would it be?
Take advice, learn and as you progress share that knowledge with people. Back to my point earlier on quality, the more you do, the more you learn and every day and every project has the potential to be different, so use those experiences to build your expertise.
What can we expect to see from your business in the next 12 months?
Lots of lots being delivered – we are entering delivery mode on our key projects and that means taking them from concept to reality, so it will be all hands on deck ensuring that we keep our promises and continue to grow McAndrew Property Group in line with the values that have made us successful.