This week we’re going Behind the Division to meet Glenny’s 17-strong Valuation and Business Space Lease Advisory team who have been shortlisted for Property Week Awards’ Professional Team of the Year 2020.
Renowned for their regional expertise and deep knowledge of local markets, the team operate from the firm’s head office in Stratford where they provide on the ground advice to clients.
Last year, the team completed an impressive 1,027 valuations, which amounted to over £1.1 billion of property assets, and, despite a bumpy start to the year, continued to flourish in the face of challenging market conditions.
Join us as we speak to the people Behind the Division in a two-part interview we’ll be releasing in the run up to the awards ceremony on Thursday 19 November.
What advice would you give to clients right now?
The same as I give myself: to listen, compare reports, statements, and market experience carefully and judge against. Look for the opportunities and solutions, not the problems.
Right now, our advice is to make friends and ensure strong lines of communication with landlords. Strong working relationships between communicative landlords and tenants work. As lockdown has taught us, we need understanding, shared goals, and forward planning to make tomorrow a better day.
Tell us about your recent successes?
From a lease advisory perspective, we have been hugely successful in guiding our clients on the state of the market pre and post the outbreak of the pandemic, addressing rent reviews and lease renewals based on current market evidence and lease terms.
Collaboration between us and our data is of a high standard and we are able to provide sound local knowledge wherever we are. We continue to advise clients swiftly on their assets and portfolios and have even had recent success with winning new bank lending clients as the lending market continues to evolve.
It has to be our ability to maintain and build relationships and trust over a period whereby the opportunity of seeing people on a face to face basis has significantly diminished.
We were also quick to diversify our business model and adapt to changing market conditions, expanding our proportion of non-secured lending work as the banks increased lending criteria and withdrew lending products from the market.
We increased our profile with Local Authorities in particular and have won work as a result, providing them with essential valuation advice for longer term planning and housing strategy, which is somewhat protected from the hopefully short term impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
What’s in store for next year?
I expect that in the coming year we will have to be ready to keep adapting to challenges as the economy and property market begins to rebalance. For example, the Professional Indemnity Insurance market for general practice surveying firms has been really challenging and we’ve worked closely with our brokers to demonstrate our due diligence in respect of processes and who we work with to secure the best terms possible.
One thing is for sure – the team are ready and prepared to ensure a continuity of high quality professional advice and service to our valued clients, and we genuinely hope to return to the offices as soon as it is safe to do so. We recognise the many benefits that working in a collaborative environment have, including not only sharing best practice, business development and sharing of property intelligence, but also the camaraderie of working closely as part of a team.
But we will also implement some of the lessons learnt over the past few months in terms of some of the efficiencies in working from home, as well as the lifestyle benefits and we will, as a team, look to embrace the best parts of the office environment and working from home over the next year.