The talks you can’t miss at AREC 2019

Now in its 22nd year, the Australian Real Estate Conference (AREC) is the biggest real estate conference in the country, attracting over 4000 agents from around the country and leading speakers from Australia and around the world.

Like many other agents, Paul Bond of Hodges Sandringham has made the Gold Coast conference an annual ritual. This year will be his 13th time at AREC and his 12th in a row. “In winter you’re heading into the quieter months of real estate, it’s easy to become lethargic and take your foot off the pedal but AREC is great because it’s a bit of a reset and a recharge,” he says.

His colleague Kylie Charlton, director of Hodges Sandringham, is speaking at the event and while she won’t be saying anything Bond hasn’t been fortunate enough to hear already, he mischievously admits he’s “looking forward to seeing her nerves”.


Kylie Charlton director of Hodges Sandringham. Photo: Supplied

Bond also names Cindy Kennedy of McGrath in Sydney’s inner west as someone he’s keen to hear from. “Females in real estate are really coming forward in leaps and bounds,” he says.

Janine Bergin of LJ Hooker in Kensington, Adelaide is excited to be attending her first AREC this year. A relative newcomer to real estate just three and a half years ago, she feels ready to advance her career to the next level.

She’s particularly interested to hear keynote speaker and “conflict whisperer” Scott Duttonspeak. “Clear communication is so important in our job,” she says.

Bergin is also looking forward to hearing Ruma Mundi talk about positivity and resilience. “I think it’s an industry where you can have 20 different emotions in the one day and a lot of rejection,” says Bergin. “But you’ve got to bounce back straight away and keep going.”

Fellow first-timer Sonja Sendin of Buxton in Brighton, Melbourne is as excited as Bergin to be attending AREC. She singles out habit guru James Clear as her top pick. “With me being relatively new to real estate and trying to build my business, it will be good to learn more about putting the right systems in place,” she says.


Ruma Mundi. Photo: Supplied


She’s also keen to hear what Kylie Charlton, whose Sandringham office is not far from Sendin’s, has to say. “I want to see what she does differently to achieve these amazing results.”

There’s one type of speaker that Ray White Turramurra’s Matt Bolin does not want to hear from at AREC.

“I don’t really want to sit down and listen to someone who’s 27 and not married and working 19 hours a day, seven days a week,” he says. No offence to the young hot shots out there, but Bolin, a married father of two young girls, prefers to hear from agents in a similar position to himself.

“I’m interested to hear the perspective of someone who’s had longevity, who’s had a stable career year-in year-out, who’s married, with kids, trying to find a work-life balance because there is no perfect pill on that,” he says.

His colleague and AREC speaker David Walker, a married father of two young boys and one of the country’s top agents, will provide some of that.

Alex Mintorn of McGrath Wahroonga, selling in the same area and also a father, will have a similar perspective. “He’s a highly regarded competitor and it will be interesting to hear him telling his story,” says Bolin.


David Walker director of Ray White Wahroonga/Turramurra. Photo: Supplied


Nick Lapenna doesn’t have far to travel for AREC; he’s from Kollosche in Broadbeach. It’s his third conference and he says he takes home a few handy tips each year. He’s intrigued by James Clear’s concept of becoming one per cent better each day.

“It’s about being consistent and getting rewarded over time,” says Lapenna.

“That one per cent improvement we see every day and every month will help us become elite performers.”

Chari Emirzade, star salesman of Barry Plant in Geelong, is also on his must-see list. “To see how he makes 225 sales a year, doing a deal a day almost, that’s insane,” says Lapenna.

“It will be very interesting to see what his processes are like.”

AREC will be held on the Gold Coast from June 2-3. To purchase tickets, visit


This article originally appeared on as “The talks you can’t miss at AREC 2019”