Tag Archive: newcastle

Building Survey: Would you buy a property without one?

Buying a property is quite possibly the biggest financial investment you will ever make… James Cullen, Head of Building Surveying, explains why you should instruct a full building survey before acquisition.



What is a Basic Valuation Survey?

  • Required by the Mortgage lenders prior to approving a loan;
  • Confirm to the lender whether or not they can recover their investment if the property be repossessed;
  • This survey is not completed to provide detail on key structural and maintenance issues.


Pitfalls of Basic Valuation Surveys…

I have often been reminded that Basic Valuation Surveys are completed in less than 15 minutes… some of which do not incur a site visit or even involve entering the property or the roof space.

Similarly, with the rapid uptake of lump sum pension payments; there are a number of buyers on the market purchasing buildings outright without additional sources of finance. In this case, there is no minimum valuation survey requirement.

Consequently, purchasers are often exposed to a high level of risk. They are liable to commit the funds to maintain and repair the properties under their ownership. More often than not this liability is realised when it is too late to digest and plan for such issues.

Building Survey

Why Instruct a Full Building Survey?

According to research undertaken by consumer group ‘Which’; at a time when a purchaser is already expending funds, a survey can seem like another painful expense.

Typically, 20% of property buyers fail to commission a building survey prior to going ahead with a property transaction. This alarming figure identifies that the majority of property buyers run the risk of buying a property that could present major and costly defects which are unidentifiable to the untrained eye.

It is far better to be aware of any issues before purchasing a property so that informed decisions about how much the property is worth can be made and that the cost of any repair works can be considered at the outset.

This detailed survey can often be used to negotiate the purchase price down with the vendor, or can be set aside as a useful plan to target repairs, budget and recourse in the future.



Why instruct George F. White?

We pride ourselves on offering high quality, detailed and informed Building Surveys to reassure purchasers and identify the clear concerns with any building and where to target resources for repairs in the future.

Only the highest level of RICS compliant building survey is offered to our clients for the very reason that their security and protection is our highest priority. Moreover, this saves the unnecessary expense of revisiting and undertaking further investigation works which are often referred to in surveys such as a homebuyer’s survey.

For more information, a friendly service and advice tailored to meet your requirements, please contact James Cullen.

Commercial Growth for George F. White

We have strengthened our foothold in the North East commercial sector, providing a greater range of services and expanding the team with three recruits into our Newcastle office.

commercial

James Cullen has joined the team as Associate and will lead the Building Surveying team. James joins the team from a previous role at Building Surveyors Ltd and brings with him specialist surveying expertise in commercial building surveying, with a focus on acquisition and investment surveys, dilapidations, asset management and project works.

Speaking about his appointment, James said: “Establishing the building surveying service offering at George F. White represents a fantastic opportunity where Building Surveying aligns perfectly with the needs of its ever diversifying client base. I have always been passionate about building surveying and this role gives me a fantastic opportunity to establish a new team. I am delighted that within the first few weeks we have already established a market presence in Newcastle and the offering has been universally well received, with new work coming in already for private and corporate clients.”

In addition to James, the team has also appointed Victoria Huntley and Rhys Jones as Graduate Surveyors and to expand the team’s Commercial and Planning and Development team capability. Both are based at our Newcastle centre office.

Victoria joins the firm as a Graduate Commercial surveyor and will focus on commercial valuations, landlord and tenant and property management work. Rhys will be based within the our Newcastle planning and development team and his primary role there will be to assist with valuations of development property.

Richard Garland, Head of Tyne and Wear, added: “Since opening our Tyne and Wear offices last year, we have seen a great take up for our services, including the commercial property offering and have attracted a whole new client type. The ongoing evolution of the firm continues and I am delighted to now be able to provide a Building Surveying offering alongside strengthening our Commercial Property and Planning and Development teams. All three have shown fantastic energy and passion for what they do and a dedication to quality and client service which is the core of everything we are about.”

Time Flies When You’re Having Fun

We can’t believe how quickly time has passed and how much has happened since we moved in our city centre office in September 2017. We caught up with Richard Garland to find out more…

city

 

I am sure you can’t quite believe that we have nearly been in our Arch 2 office for a whole year. Remind us of your immediate priorities.

We went into our newest office with the view of expanding on the existing client base of GFW and to open up a new pool of potential work. It was important that we added further credibility to the work we already do in our Commercial, Energy and Planning and Development sectors, by having a presence in the city centre, where many other professional services expect to see consultants based.

 

Has business kick started the way that you hoped?

It always takes time to break into new markets but the GFW offering has been well received across the Tyne and Wear region. As a result of our presence and business development we have secured work that we would not otherwise have been considered for, including working on projects for a seven storey tower block in Newcastle, as well as city centre commercial property, red book valuations and large scale urban regeneration projects. Almost without exception, everyone we have talked to has been surprised as to how much of a specialist offering we have and how that aligns to client needs. Being in Newcastle has allowed more people to realise that.

 

We heard that you’re recruiting…

Yes! We are always on the lookout for good people. At the moment our key areas of search are for commercial surveyors and building surveyors to work out of the city centre office.

For more information about who we are looking to recruit, click here.

 

What is your most memorable experience since opening the office?

Refining the GFW pitch to people in the city centre and seeing the reaction of people that we have been doing business with for many years when they realise the true specialist nature of what we do. Aside from that, managing four bacon sandwich breakfast meetings and three evening drinks events in the same week (but I’m not complaining!).

 

Business aside, working in the city must have its advantages?

Working in the city centre has been an eye opener in many ways; the Newcastle culture is just fantastic. We should be extremely proud of our city, in particular the evolving food and social scene. As a team, we take full advantage of the abundance of independent bars, cafes and restaurants, whether that is for a staff social, a client meeting or just to grab a quick bite for lunch. We are particular fans of our neighbours, Herb Garden… what better way is there to celebrate a great week than a pizza?

Empowered People – the recipe for success

2017 was a pivotal year for George F. White. Here, our managing partner, Robyn Peat, explains the key ingredient behind such a milestone year and why 2018 presents further opportunities.

Empowered people

“2017 was a fantastic year for George F. White. A key highlight was the decision to move into Newcastle to further cultivate our Planning and Development, Energy and Commercial sectors as market developments have seen an increase in demand for a more urbanised business offering. The move was a success, and following further development within these sectors we have taken the next step and have moved into a bigger and more centralised office on Westgate Road.

Another high point of 2017, and something that will continue to be a key priority this year, is the development and expansion of our team. We appointed a range of people, from Board level positions down to junior and apprentice level roles. We added more specialists to the team, appointing a new operations director, Sally Hart, and also a new regional operations manager for GFW Letting, Donna Cheney. 11 new starters joined us when we expanded into Tyne and Wear, taking us to over 120 employees nationwide.

I often get asked, so what’s your secret to continued success, Robyn? And my answer is always the same: our team. Each team member provides clarity, direction and support to help clients make informed decisions and achieve the best outcomes. To us, this secures success and, in turn, drives growth and prosperity.

Fundamentally, our ethos is people-driven, which is why the personal and professional development of our team is vital. Another highlight of last year, was the restructure that the business went through. We wanted to support internal growth and identify new and consistent opportunities for staff and services. In Northumberland alone, 11 members of the team were given well deserved promotions, recognising the dedication, hard work and talent of the individuals within the business. The restructure has given everyone, regardless of their level or role within the business, a very clear route to progression. It has also provided leadership and management opportunities for many, and shown that the Group is committed to supporting each and every team member’s development, which is rewarded and recognised appropriately.

We’ve also introduced new and updated incentives in order to give back to the team, from extra holidays and changes to the maternity package, through to vouchers and rewards. Notably, a bonus structure has now been implemented so that all members of staff will receive a percentage of the whole business’ profits for that financial year.

Entry level employment is something we strongly believe in, too. Over the past year alone, the Alnwick office has been home to three apprentices and an Assessment of Professional Competence (APC) student. Over the past decade, we have supported 23 successful APC graduates and are currently recruiting for more across the business.

For me, investing in your people is without doubt the most important thing you can do as a business. By giving the right mentoring, training and tools to excellent people – the team – we’re able to give the right guidance and support to clients. Due to our consistent growth, we are actively recruiting, creating four new roles across the business. Our ability to grow our workforce is all down to putting our people at the centre of our ethos, and empowering skilled and nurtured people to thrive at George F. White.”

For more information about the current career opportunities at George F. White, please contact Liz Rhodes on careers@georgefwhite.co.uk

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