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Raine & Horne Commercial launches in Canberra as new Government backs SME growth and commercial property demand

August 2, 2022

One of the ACT’s most dynamic commercial property double acts, Mark and Hayley Nicholls have timed the launch of Raine & Horne Commercial Canberra perfectly as the Capital’s local small business community will benefit from a substantial Commonwealth Government announcement[i].

Mr Nicholls, whose career in Canberra includes several record transactions, says the decision by the new Commonwealth Government to revise the Commonwealth Procurement Rules (CPRs) will further underpin demand for commercial real estate in the Australian Capital Territory. 

The new principal sold Canberra’s landmark Section 63 at auction for $92 million, the majority of mixed-use development sites at Kingston Foreshore, Canberra Brickworks in Yarralumla, and Campbell 5, another premium mixed-use development site, under the hammer for a tick over $63 million while employed as Director of Capital Markets by one of the world’s largest commercial real estate brands. 

A better deal for Canberra SMEs

 Each year the Australian government spends approximately $70 billion on contracts, and the new CPRs will double down on the government’s commitment to expanding opportunities for SMEs.

 The new CPRs now require that SMEs can source 20% of government contracts by value, an increase from the previous target of 10%. 

 Mr Nicholls explains, “This announcement will open the door to more government business for Canberra-based SMEs, enabling them to employ more workers and expand their commercial operations. 

 “It’s exciting that we have launched Raine & Horne Commercial Canberra just as this significant announcement will start to trickle through to Canberra’s business community.  

 “Throw in the fact that there is no stamp duty on commercial properties valued under $1.6 million, along with Canberra’s reputation as an investment haven due to the dominant role of government tenants, the outlook for the market and our new business couldn’t be better.” 

Mr Nicholls continued, “The caveat is that commercial stock is in short supply across most sectors, and more national brands who service government agencies are moving to the Capital. These businesses will further drive demand for commercial space.” Currently, retail and industrial yields are sub 6% and commercial yields sit at 6-7%. 

 “The solution to the supply issues is for the government to free up more land for commercial developments in Canberra,” Mr Nicholls added. 

Raine & Horne Commercial is a perfect fit for the dynamic duo

 Mr Nicholls said he is excited by the prospect of waving the Raine & Horne Commercial flag in Canberra. “There was an opportunity to tap into the reputation of Raine & Horne Commercial as one of the leading commercial property brands with a national and international office network,” he explained. 

 “After several discussions with Raine & Horne Commercial that included Executive Chairman Angus Raine, aligning with the national brand and its market-leading technology is very appealing.”

 Mrs Nicholls added, “The Raine & Horne Commercial branding is very clean and corporate, their marketing solutions are outstanding, and that the Group has offices all over Australia appeals.

Also, every person we surveyed had heard of Raine & Horne.”

Canberra-born and bred, Mrs Nicholls has worked in real estate since 2005 and has a communications degree with minor units in business management from the University of Canberra. Her extensive resume also includes coordinating training and events for Master Builders Association ACT including the annual MBA Awards and was acting as Marketing Manager at property portal Allhomes.

 “We also spoke to our residential real estate colleagues at Raine & Horne Queanbeyan/Jerrabomberra, who gave us much confidence about joining,” she added. 

 On a personal level, Mr Nicholls, who has a Bachelor of Science Hons degree in Urban Estate Management from John Moores University in Liverpool UK says that owning an office premises is the natural next step for the couple. “Hayley and I are in an excellent position to join forces and grow our successful business together.

 “After 15 years, we have very loyal clients whom we have worked with and who are very excited to support our new business.”

 Raine & Horne Commercial Canberra is a full-service commercial real estate agency servicing the ACT and surrounding region across the industrial, office, retail, and development sites. The office is on Level 3, Suite 22, 490 Northbourne Avenue, in the lively retail and dining precinct of Dickson. 

Mr Angus Raine commented, “Since 2007, Mark has ably assisted commercial property owners in providing strategic advice to divest their assets, marketing their property, and negotiating transactions to secure buyers and tenants. 

“Mark and Hayley are committed to providing the highest quality service to every client, and this is evident in their approach to all their sales and leasing listings, no matter how big or small.

“I can’t wait to work with them to deliver the very best services to investors and businesses in Canberra.”

For all your commercial sales and leasing needs in the Australian Capital Territory, contact Raine & Horne Commercial Canberra on 0417 239 551