Media Release – Not for profit real estate agency opens in Melbourne

One of Melbourne’s largest housing and homelessness providers, HomeGround Services, is about to enter the real estate industry.

HomeGround Real Estate is a social enterprise that will provide expert property and tenancy management services to investors and socially-minded property owners in Melbourne.

The proceeds of the venture will be reinvested into assisting a growing number of individuals and families who are homeless or at risk of homelessness and rely on HomeGround for housing and support services.

A team of dedicated property and tenancy staff, based in Collingwood, are ready to provide a high level of service to rental providers and renters throughout Melbourne.

HomeGround CEO Dr Heather Holst said the agency had 15 years’ experience in property and tenancy management and a desire to boost capacity in response to a growing demand for housing and support services.

“Our tenancy and property management team has around 15 years’ experience in managing hundreds of properties for the Department of Human Services in addition to many properties in the private rental market under head lease arrangements.”

Dr Holst said the decision to take on the real estate market was also driven by the need to increase HomeGround’s capacity to meet the needs of people seeking housing and support services.

“We have seen a steady increase in the number of people who need assistance with services that can help prevent them becoming homeless and assist those who are already experiencing homelessness,” she said.

“While we continue to predominantly rely on funding bodies to provide these essential services we also realise the vulnerability and uncertainty of this income stream. The real estate agency will allow us to reinvest in our core business of ending homelessness.”

MD and founder of Wilderness Wear, Philip Endersbee, a key supporter of the initiative has listed two apartments in Kew with HomeGround Real Estate at below market rent.

“I have been fortunate enough to acquire some investment property and I am encouraged by the work HomeGround does in working to prevent homelessness. I had the capacity to forego a percentage of rental income in order to help a family in need and would strongly urge others who are in this position to do the same.”

Philippe Batters, a successful real estate agent with his own business in South Yarra, is supporting the agency by acting as the Principal on a pro-bono basis.

“I think this is a wonderful initiative and I’m keen to assist HomeGround Real Estate to grow and develop into a successful, competitive player in the market. If you have a rental property and want to see a return on your investment in financial and social terms I hope you will be contacting HomeGround Real Estate.”

Media contact: HomeGround Communications Manager Catherine Beadnell: 0450 165 545

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