Q: What does it say on your business card?
Head of Lettings, Connells
Q: What is Connells?
Connells is one of the UK’s leading estate agencies, with nearly 160 branches across the UK. It forms part of the Connells Group, one of the UK’s leading estate agency and property services companies, which has nearly 540 estate agency branches nationally as well as offering a range of B2B and B2C services such as new homes, mortgage services, conveyancing, EPCs, surveying, corporate lettings, asset management, land & planning, LPA receivers, auctions and relocations.
Q: How long have you been working with Connells?
I joined the Connells estate agency team in August 2015, however I have been working within the Connells Group for 27 years.
Q: What does your role involve?
In my role at Connells, I manage the structural organisation of the lettings business, the development of the Area Management team and oversee the training of the entire lettings division. My mission is to drive the growth of our lettings network through acquisitions and setting up cold starts and ultimately to increase profits through the development of new strategies for our market appraisal, offer and induction processes.
Q: How did it all start?
I began my career 27 years ago as an office junior for Fox & Sons, part of the Sequence network and subsidiary of the Connells Group, and quickly rose through the ranks to become Lettings Area Director for Sequence UK, covering the South and South East region. Whilst in this role I grew and developed a specialist lettings business to become amongst the most successful within the Sequence network, and my success in this role secured me my new role as Head of Lettings for Connells.
Q: Why choose Connells Lettings?
We offer the full package – we have a national network of branches which is continuously expanding. Within our branches our teams of experts are ARLA registered, offer a breadth of experience, local knowledge and a full spectrum of lettings services.
Q: What are your three unique selling points?
We are a one stop shop for landlords, offering a full range of services from finding the right properties and tenants, to property management and advice on extending portfolios.
Our staff are all fully qualified and our branches are ARLA registered branches, part of the TDS and members of the Property Ombudsman.
We are dedicated to finding our landlords the right tenants to suit their needs and their property, as opposed to just setting them up with the first tenant we can find.
Q: Who do you currently work with?
We primarily work with landlords, tenants and housing associations, but also work closely with our residential sales and new homes teams to help build our landlords portfolios. We also work with various relocation agencies, assisting them in securing short and long term lets for their corporate clients.
Q: How do you overcome your competitors?
By offering a quality and dedicated lettings service. For instance, we have dedicated stand-alone lettings offices in those markets that need it, our most recent being Wootton Fields which opened in August, as well as dedicated lettings support centres. Our staff are all fully trained and we offer continuous training to maintain standards. We always put the customer first, and we have a fully inclusive offering of services. We also have excellent high street presence, particularly enhanced by our recent brand refresh which has modernised our brand and given us a fresh, stand-out look.
Q: How do you go above the call of duty for your clients?
We use all platforms and tools available to us to give our landlords the best possible rental yields and service. We aim to minimise their void periods through working with our dedicated support centres and residential sales teams to find new tenants for their properties. Our well-trained teams also work hard through our office network, as well as utilising online platforms such as our own website and Rightmove and Zoopla to achieve the best rental prices for our landlords. We ensure that all tenants are fully referenced to make sure we secure our landlords the right tenant and not necessarily the first tenant that walks through the door, and then throughout tenancies we constantly stay in touch with our clients to monitor and manage their needs.
Q: What are your best achievements and what made them so special?
One of my best achievements was taking over Sequence’s Southern region lettings network which had 16 offices and over a four year period I grew this to 32, bringing in a profit of over £1m. I plan to replicate this success in my role in Connells Lettings.
This industry is very much about the people who work within it, so I deem the development of others very important. Therefore, another of my best achievements is helping to develop a 21 year old manager over a four year period to become one of the best Area Managers in the Sequence network.
Q: What do you feel it takes to be successful in the industry?
Dedication. You have to love what you do to be successful in lettings and estate agency and I love what I do.
Q: How to find out more:
Website: www.connells.co.uk / Connells Lettings support centre: 01233 620633