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The first few pages of The Bob Dey Property Report scraped on to the internet just before Christmas 1999, with some blemishes, no reports but a page of links to other sites in the property industry.

It formed the basis of what is now being created, a more professional-looking site which will soon become required reading for anybody seriously interested in the property industry in Auckland, in the listed and syndicated property sectors, and in the economic environment for property investment.

The report is an internet publication which I produce through my private company, Bob Dey Publishing Ltd. It is not an adapted web version of a paper news publication.

You will see the site is divided into two components, the links to other organisations in the property industry (plus a couple of miscellaneous ones) and news coverage. The news headlines and links to external information sources are free, but access to internal links will require payment of a subscription and use of a password. That is my preference, instead of using advertising.

The intention is to provide subscribers with regular news updates on property markets, plus an archive, but also to offer non-subscribers a taste of that news coverage while they use the external links.

If you look on the web for property information around the world, most often you will be led to real estate advertising. This site links you to agencies because sale of property is an important feature of the industry, but on the news pages of this site you will not be confronted by any advertising. Separation makes for an easier and quicker read.

Writing about both the physical property industry and investment aspects has culminated in this focused product, which will offer news and analysis in both areas.

You will get a combination of bite-sized items as events occur, longer coverage where it warrants, and analysis. Your own participation is likely -- if you can add to a topic, dispute a conclusion, want to slip a suggestion or tip on the e-mail.

Back to the absence of ads -- I find advertising on web pages deters me from my quest. It slows me down when I want to find information. On this site, I point to agencies advertising their products so you can visit them freely. My product, the provision of news, requires funding and your small subscription seems a clean way of doing it. And you don't get sidetracked. I dithered for months before launching a site financed purely by subscriptions. Would you flick off as soon as you saw the complication, as I normally would?

I think the answer is that many visitors will flag the site away at this point. I think, too, when you come to a site uncertain about its possible content, you're not going to throw money at it. You need to see some sign of quality.

So, now that they've all gone, that brings it down to two of us, me digging up as much news, as many small indicators, writing as much analysis on the property sector as I can muster, and you wanting to know what's going on, which is something you won't find out easily anywhere else.

Writing news has been an enormous frustration for me over the past 15 years. Greater expertise and wider knowledge have not always been accompanied by more accommodating newspaper pages.

Newspapers, where I have chosen to write for most of the past 20 years, try to style things for you but mostly package according to space. Not that you want stories to run forever, but you want them to stop for a good reason, not a bad one.

So here we are in the anarchic cyberworld, and I need to create a map so you can find your way round. There are two basics: industry sector and geography. A third element is the business discipline (eg, developer, valuer), and a fourth is the name of the individual, organisation or company. This site approaches information from all these starting points.

You will see that Report map develop every time you click the Report map tab. Often, though, it's hard to decide which category an item should fit into. When in doubt, use the Search tab, for both current and archived material.

If you choose not to subscribe, you will still have access to the headlines on the Home page, get an idea of internal contents from the Check page and be able to visit other sites via the External links page.

© Copyright Bob Dey Publishing Ltd 2000. All rights reserved.
Features you can expect to see regularly when the news site is operating from late January:


Resource consent updates

Listed company analysis

Commercial transactions