Local through and through – meet Arizto's man in Whakatāne

8 Apr 2024

When a salesperson who has spent over 25 years in the industry says that New Zealand’s fastest growing real estate company is the way of the future, you should take the time to listen.

Part of a growing team in the Bay of Plenty region, Arizto is proud to be represented in the lovely town of Whakatāne and its nearby beach settlement of Ōhope by local identity Scott Jarrett.

Nestled on the banks of its namesake river and roughly an hour’s drive from the region’s main centres of Tauranga and Rotorua – the warmth of the Whakatāne area with nearly 17,000 people is not just found in that fact it often records the highest annual sunshine hours in the country.

There are diverse industries with traditional trades like forestry, agriculture and fishing still vital, but also an ever growing tourism scene with whale and dolphin watching, bush tramps and opportunities to experience Maori culture.

Jarrett is born and raised there, and although like many the 68-year-old left for a brief time to explore further education and business opportunities in Dunedin and Wellington, the love of his close-knit community had him returning home with his wife, also an expat local.

He ran a successful wholesale distribution company, which he later sold, and was approached by the local real estate company to consider entering the profession – being offered a retainer to start but less than seven months later no longer requiring it as his list of home owners grew.

Jarrett has worked for Harcourts, Ray White and Professionals in Whakatāne, but never became set in his ways when it came to 'traditional’ real estate.

Always civic-minded as he spent 12 years as a district councillor – the third generation of his family to do so – Jarrett felt the industry overheads his home owners were covering with their commissions and the up-front marketing costs they were being asked to pay no longer reflected the financial burdens many families were feeling.

There were times he felt more like "a debt collector" than a salesperson, while being annoyed he could not just get on with his campaigns without having key documents processed by other staff, whose salaries were being justified in those commissions.

"People are hurting [financially]. Companies are going, 'you’ve got to get them with skin in the game’.

"But I came from an environment where we always did [the marketing].

"I was becoming disillusioned and I was considering retirement."

That was when the opportunity to join Arizto came up, and while Jarrett still did a little bit of the old school sales methods with letter drops in certain areas – he soon found his hunch was correct that people would embrace the new model with a digital platform he could control with complimentary marketing and better value commissions.

As at writing, he has 16 sales to his name in Whakatāne, Edgecumbe and Coastlands with another soon to be added, and over half a dozen other lovely homes available on the books.

"The freshness of the brand has been part of the attraction," he said.

"I could see the model – I really love it, it was certainly fairer compared to what clients have to front up with.

"I love the fee is fair and you still get the same service.

"I don’t have to line up at an admin desk and beg for someone to write up something for me.

"It’s just sensible, there’s so much sense in it."

While he also undertook a little 'traditional’ marketing in the local newspaper – tellingly this was more to showcase all the properties he had sold under the brand, rather than needing to advertise his current wares.

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