By staff reporter
The Property Investment Professionals of Australia (PIPA) has elected a new chairperson.
Nicola McDougall, who has been a voluntary PIPA board director since 2014, was unanimously elected as the new PIPA chair last week.
Former chair Peter Koulizos decided to step down from the position after four years at the helm but is remaining a PIPA board director.
“It has been very gratifying to work with other likeminded individuals who are also passionate about improving the standards of those who work in the property investment industry,” Mr Koulizos said.
“I have known Nicola for many years and worked closely with her since we both joined the board in 2014.
“She takes on the role as chair with not only many years of PIPA board experience, but also a wealth of knowledge and experience in industry associations, lobbying, public relations and journalism, as well as property research and analysis.”
Ms McDougall has been involved in property research, analysis, and reporting since 2006 and is the former editor of Australian Property Investor magazine. She was also previously the Executive Manager of Corporate Affairs at the Real Estate Institute of Queensland, and is a business owner, author, and successful property investor.
“PIPA has grown in prominence significantly over recent years due to the steady guidance of Peter, as well as former chairs Ben Kingsley and Margaret Lomas, who all continue to be wonderful advocates for our industry,” Ms McDougall said.
Ms McDougall said PIPA has invested in a number of special projects over the past two years, including updating its Qualified Property Investment Adviser (QPIA) training program, launching a public awareness campaign, and is currently upgrading its online presence.
“Over the past two years, PIPA membership has increased by 25 per cent, while the number of QPIA members has soared by 47 per cent over the same period,” Ms McDougall said.
“As chair, I hope to continue to grow the brand awareness of PIPA and QPIA members so that more consumers are able to identify, and work with, the most ethical, educated, and professional property investment advisers.
“This year, PIPA will also work towards transitioning our QPIA training program into a Certificate IV qualification that we hope – in lieu of regulation in our sector – will become the minimum educational standard for anyone working in our industry.”
PIPA has codes of ethics and conduct that all of its members voluntarily agree to abide with, as well as professional standards of accreditation and training for the property investment industry.
“Whether they’re looking for a property investment adviser, mortgage broker or accountant – essentially any professional involved in the property investment process – property buyers and investors should look for the PIPA and QPIA logos,” Ms McDougall said.
“PIPA members must also adhere to our strict code of conduct, which offers property buyers and investors the best assurance that they are dealing with a trusted professional.”