Hi, I’m Bob Dey, creator & writer of The Bob Dey Property Report and its email newsletter. I established the website at the end of 1999 through my company, Bob Dey Publishing Ltd, broke it into 5 more specialist websites in 2004 but reverted to a single site when it all took on the look of a spider’s web instead of making navigation easier.
I’ve wanted for some time to shift it to the WordPress platform to make it easier for you to comment directly about stories. WordPress also seemed a clean & easy system for the operator to work, and presented options that would be less clunky than the fairly rigid system I’ve been using.
After a career in journalism that goes back to December 1965, the last 14 years have been the most challenging, uncertain, frustrating yet highly rewarding for me. People tell me the website is wonderful, and I tell them it has a long way to go before I’ll be satisfied with it. Sometimes people tell me I’m a guru. It’s warming to lap up praise, but anybody who believes they’re a guru usually isn’t.
As a one-man band trying to run small news items alongside more complicated, deeper content, I’ve created my own frustration of never having the time to devote to quality articles while keeping you abreast of the mundane. The mundane is important; I have plans to present more of the quality and I’m looking forward to doing so in different formats.
Now to go back, to tell you who I am. Firefox has been telling you I’m -1834 years old while Explorer says I’m 67. I like the Firefox version.
I’ve worked on numerous New Zealand newspapers since 1965 — the Otago Daily Times, Evening Star, Evening Post, Dominion, Hawke’s Bay Herald-Tribune, NZ Truth, Auckland Star, NZ Herald, National Business Review, Sunday Star, Sunday Times and their merged entity, the Sunday Star-Times, edited Auckland Business and Building News magazines. My writing also appeared for a time in the Southland Times, Christchurch Press and the Australian.
Before starting the website I was property editor of the NZ Herald. After starting the website, I wrote for short periods for Property Business magazine, about 15 columns for Metro magazine and edited the new residential investment monthly, The NZ Property Magazine, in 2003.
In Australia in the early 1970s, I worked in radio & television for the ABC and in London I had a brief role as chief reporter of suburban newspaper the Harrow Observer.
Back in New Zealand since the end of 1979, I have steadily built up knowledge of the property sector in Auckland, but have also written about many other aspects of business. I began concentrating on property issues after being appointed the Auckland Star’s housing & energy reporter at the end of 1983.
That led to coverage of Auckland’s property boom in the 1980s and the subsequent property and sharemarket collapse, and to coverage of a more rational rise in activity in the 90s which veered toward excess a decade later.
My coverage of business has included its downside, some of it through the many pages of the U column, which I stopped writing in October 2012 – something had to give and that was it. My health was deteriorating and I hadn’t really noticed. Taking myself outside the courtroom and away from the long hours of detail required for the U column has improved my health; at some point I hope to renew coverage of the courts.
A paragraph I wrote here a decade ago is worth repeating: “You will learn about litigation that is normally bypassed by all media, resource management issues will be followed, and you will see the views of everyday people about their suburbs, their shops, the main streets, back streets, refurbishments & new subdivisions.”
I’m pleased to say the “mainstream” (a word like guru) media discovered that litigation and performed far better at covering the downside. The rest of the paragraph hasn’t happened as I envisaged it; that’s the programme now.