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Meet Australia’s ‘celebrity’ real estate agents

For Lamborghini-driving, designer clothes-wearing real estate playboy Zed Nasheef, multimillion-dollar house aren’t just sold – they’re ‘Zold’.

The 30-year-old has a nameplate declaring ‘f**king brilliant’ on his desk and a $100 note with his face superimposed over it on the wall behind.

‘In Zed we trust’ read four other framed posters, reflecting off the polished black marble table in his Melbourne office.

Zed Nasheef has a nameplate declaring ‘f**king brilliant’ on his desk and a $100 note with his face superimposed over it on the wall behind

Mr Nasheef is one of a generation of under-40 agents whose property empires are built on relentless self-promotion as much as a good sales pitch.

‘Your personal brand is a 24-hour job,’ he told Daily Mail Australia while driving his BMW i8 to his favourite coffee shop.

He is wearing a hoodie with his company name on it as part of his literally constant indirect marketing attempts.

‘The minute you wake up, you have to think about how you can make a difference in someone else’s life,’ he said.

‘Your brand is as big as your network, and your net worth is as big as your network… You gotta protect it and grind on a daily basis to get your name out there.’

Mr Nasheef, a former Afghan refugee, claimed the version of himself promoted online, and the many luxury cars he's posed with, is a means to an end

Mr Nasheef, a former Afghan refugee, claimed the version of himself promoted online, and the many luxury cars he’s posed with, is a means to an end

Mr Nasheef is one of a generation of under-40 agents whose property empires are built on relentless self-promotion as much as a good sales pitch

Mr Nasheef is one of a generation of under-40 agents whose property empires are built on relentless self-promotion as much as a good sales pitch

Mr Nasheef, a former Afghan refugee, claimed the version of himself promoted online, and the many luxury cars he’s posed with, was a means to an end.

‘I love the fancy cars but it’s not really my fault – the rich don’t want to deal with the poor, this is the reality,’ he said.

‘People with a $20 million house don’t want to work with someone with a $20,000 car. You need to have the same mindset and vision to connect with them.’

‘I’ve dreamed of owning cars since I was a little kid, but if you asked me how many horsepower is has or what the engine is, I don’t know anything about it. It’s just that the world is materialistic, not me.’ 

Such is the rock star image of the modern real estate agent that they are in demand for almost everything – brand launches, motivational speaking, and parties galore. 

A few, like Mr Nasheef, even dabble in reality TV.

They all wear incredibly slick, thousand-dollar suits and spend almost as much time promoting brands and causes as they do overseeing inspections. 

Gavin Rubenstein, famous for his Versace dressing gown, regularly puts together fast-paced 'diary of a real estate agent' videos to enhance his mystique

Gavin Rubenstein, famous for his Versace dressing gown, regularly puts together fast-paced ‘diary of a real estate agent’ videos to enhance his mystique

Mr Rubenstein wheels and deals on the phone while overlooking a beach in Sydney's eastern suburbs with from the balcony of a home he's selling

Mr Rubenstein wheels and deals on the phone while overlooking a beach in Sydney’s eastern suburbs with from the balcony of a home he’s selling

Mr Rubenstein (centre) parties with glamourous friends and plenty of high-grade booze

Mr Rubenstein (centre) parties with glamourous friends and plenty of high-grade booze

Instagram profiles boats tens of thousands of followers and are filled with carefully posed photos of themselves, bearing pithy motivational quotes, alongside homes that cost a lifetime’s salary.  

Gavin Rubenstein, famous for his Versace dressing gown, regularly puts together fast-paced ‘diary of a real estate agent’ videos to enhance his mystique.

‘It’s always fun, I love this s**t, man. You have to love it to be in as deep as I am,’ he declares in one of them.

He would need to, his day starts with a 5am gym session and an early entry to the office – even after signing a deal at midnight.

‘No one works harder than me,’ he says in every interview he gives, planning to retire on a giant portfolio after just 20 years in the business.

Mr Rubenstein was Ray White’s top seller in NSW for seven years in a row, then started his own franchise in upmarket Woollahra.

‘Naturally I wasn’t organised and an early riser, it’s just gone that way over time because I’ve found it to be most productive,’ he says in another of his videos.

‘Everything I do is to build a better and more productive business.’

He’s not the only one burning the candle at both ends, it’s a theme around many of these glamorous agents. 

Michael Coombs, dubbed ‘king of the north’ for his dominance of Sydney’s north shore property market, is also up at 5am every day.

Michael Coombs, dubbed 'king of the north' for his dominance of Sydney's north shore property market, is also up at 5am every day

Michael Coombs, dubbed ‘king of the north’ for his dominance of Sydney’s north shore property market, is also up at 5am every day

Mr Coombs (far left) with his wife Mia and a gaggle of friends and family on the balcony of a plush Sydney home

Mr Coombs (far left) with his wife Mia and a gaggle of friends and family on the balcony of a plush Sydney home

He hits the gym, meditates and ‘has a steam’ before spending time with his two-year-old son and making it in to the office at 7am.

Mr Coombs brags that the result is him selling fours times as much as his competition through his LJ Hooker Avnu – $350 million ever year. 

The 41-year-old shares more of his personal life online than most, with shots of his wife Mia and toddler son almost as numerous as big houses.

Monika Tu, who makes her fortune selling expensive Sydney homes to rich Chinese buyers as well as being a popular speaker, revels in her frantic pace.

‘I don’t have a life, you know, this is my life. I don’t waste time. Everything I do, it’s all around my real estate,’ she told the Sun-Herald in a profile.

Mr Nasheef, however, thinks this is all ‘f**king bulls**t’ and starts his day at 9am like a normal office worker – just one who claims to be worth $12-15 million.

Monika Tu, who makes her fortune selling expensive Sydney homes to rich Chinese buyers as well as being a popular speaker, revels in her frantic pace

Monika Tu, who makes her fortune selling expensive Sydney homes to rich Chinese buyers as well as being a popular speaker, revels in her frantic pace

Ms Tu said she gets three or four invitations to events every night and already works as a promoter for BMW and Sydney's Museum of Modern Art

Ms Tu said she gets three or four invitations to events every night and already works as a promoter for BMW and Sydney’s Museum of Modern Art

Like every high-flying entrepreneur, all of them are keen to insist that anyone can make it if they just work hard enough.

Mr Nasheef does come from humble beginnings, arriving in Australia as a 12-year-old refugee from Afghanistan who didn’t know a word of English.

He started selling hot dogs aged 14 and was a top-selling Telstra employee before he got his start in real estate.

Last month he spun this origin story into one of his frequent motivational speeches while posing next to his new sports car.

‘Dreamt of this car as a little kid and I am now a proud owner of this New Lamborghini Huracan,’ he wrote.

‘Struggled for three years with not a dollar to my name at the age of 22 and all I got told was to quit what I’m doing on daily basis. 

‘I received Negative energy everywhere with no support from anyone. The only thing that kept me going was my self belief and being around people that gave me hope.

‘I didn’t listen to anyone but to my heart, I persisted/hustled and got rejected on a daily basis, my own friends laughed at my videos and people in the industry would bad mouth me without even knowing me.’

Mr Nasheef does come from humble beginnings, arriving in Australia as a 12-year-old refugee from Afghanistan who didn't know a word of English

Mr Nasheef does come from humble beginnings, arriving in Australia as a 12-year-old refugee from Afghanistan who didn’t know a word of English

Mr Coombs shares more of his personal life online than most, with shots of his wife Mia and toddler son almost as numerous as big houses

Mr Coombs shares more of his personal life online than most, with shots of his wife Mia and toddler son almost as numerous as big houses

More of his words of wisdom are espoused in videos he dubs ‘Zed Talks’ and in cliche-laden posts – including his views on women.

‘The perfect woman, you see is a working woman, not an idler, not a fine lady, but one who uses her hands and her head and her heart for the good of others.’

Mr Nasheef is not shy about showing off his newfound affluence with numerous photos of his flash cars, boasting of owning a Bentley at 27.

He claims to have sold houses on Facebook, and once in just 15 minutes. 

Ms Tu also immigrated to Australia without much going for her, just one of thousands of international students looking for a better education.

She worked at Paddy’s Markets and explained her climb up the property ladder in ABC series Almost Australian earlier this year.

‘People look at me now and think ‘oh my god, you’re a rock star’… you have all the luxury, bling blings, diamonds and stuff, driving the luxury cars. But where I came from was [different],’ she said. 

Mr Rubenstein was Ray White's top seller in NSW for seven years in a row, then started his own franchise in upmarket Woollahra

Mr Rubenstein was Ray White’s top seller in NSW for seven years in a row, then started his own franchise in upmarket Woollahra

Mr Rubinstein (right) counts PR queen Roxy Jacenko among his celebrity friends

Mr Rubinstein (right) counts PR queen Roxy Jacenko among his celebrity friends

Ms Tu immigrated to Australia without much going for her, just one of thousands of international students looking for a better education - now she drapes velvet around her office

Ms Tu immigrated to Australia without much going for her, just one of thousands of international students looking for a better education – now she drapes velvet around her office

Mr Coombs grew up in Australia, but was one of four children to a single mother. 

Now he rubs shoulders with celebrities and buys and sells them homes that immediately make the real estate newspaper pages. 

His list of celebrity clients includes Karl Stefanovic, Kate Waterhouse, ex-NRL stars Beau Ryan and Benji Marshall, and Olympian Matt Shirvington. 

Matthew Pillios is another real estate agent whose image is built on celebrity clients, specifically AFL stars in his case.

You name a top player in Melbourne, chances are he’s helped them buy or sell a home – Anthony Koutoufides, Jack Riewoldt, and Josh Gibson to name a few.

He also secretly negotiated the sale of Alex Rance’s huge family home in Brighton after his messy split from his wife last year.

Mr Pillios found his niche in his former career as a football commentator, and he still does some UFC broadcasting.

AFL stars like Dane Swan, Alex Rance, Luke Darcy, Josh Bruce, and Scott Cummings have also helped him with charity fundraisers that further boost his profile.

Matthew Pillios is another real estate agent whose image is built on celebrity clients, specifically AFL stars in his case

Matthew Pillios is another real estate agent whose image is built on celebrity clients, specifically AFL stars in his case

Mr Pillios (right) counts many AFL stars like Dane Swan (left) among his clients, who also help him with charity fundraisers

Mr Pillios (right) counts many AFL stars like Dane Swan (left) among his clients, who also help him with charity fundraisers

Side hustles are a common trend for superstar real estate agents – the speaking circuit and promotional work being the most popular.

Ms Tu said she gets three or four invitations to events every night and already works as a promoter for BMW and Sydney’s Museum of Modern Art.

She’s well-suited to both roles as a huge art collector, some of which hangs on her office walls, and poses with many high-end cars.

Last year she announced she was embarking on a side career as a keynote speaker as she had ‘always believed in the power of words’. 

‘It’s the personal stories we share that can have the most impact, make people think, challenge themselves and evolve,’ she said. 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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