You can have a great ‘feel’ for what properties will sell, as well as which particular sectors they would slot right in to. But you really won’t get far in this business unless you’re prepared to get out and meet other people within the industry. And of course, you wouldn’t just meet with them – work out who you could work with and then you can begin to build a foundation of contacts for your future in property.
Good working relationships are crucial to property success. Not only do you want to surround yourself with people you can trust, but you’ll also want to meet regularly with individuals and companies who are prepared to tip you off about forthcoming Below Market Value (BMV) deals. So how do you get the most from networking? We would recommend these tips:
Knowing reliable and skilled contractors such as joiners, builders, plumbers etc, are always helpful, especially for hands-on buy to let landlords. You can always refer them onto other landlords too – the same applies to contractors.
Architects and surveyors
Excellent professionals such as planners, architects etc, aren’t as easy to come by as you might think. Many architects, in particular, have their own ways of working and aren’t always as amenable as you might hope. Construction delays can run into hundreds, even thousands, of pounds. So, once you’ve found a good one, stick with them. These people often have a good idea about new developments and construction planned or going up in the community.
A good mortgage broker can definitely be worth his or her weight in gold. The better they get to know you, the more they’ll understand your funding structure and the type of packages that would work best for your particular circumstances. They may even vouch for you when in comes to accessing particular finance.
Where to meet these ‘prized’ individuals:
These give you an opportunity to meet other investors, landlords, professionals etc. from other locations. This is ideal if you’re planning on expanding, but it’s also an opportunity to hear others’ experiences and tips.
Local networking groups
Always a good chance to catch up with investors and landlords etc. within your area to find out the latest news. It’s also a good opportunity to socialise and strengthen relationships.
There are multiple networking groups for investors and landlords on social media. These include forums where you can help and advise others in the industry. There are also trade bodies where you can find out what’s happening in the sector, as well as comment on consultations if you’re a member. These include the Association of Residential Landlords (ARLA) and the British Property Federation (BPF). For estate agents, it’s NAEA Propertymark, while the prominent Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) represents the property surveyors’ profession.
Other community-based networking ideas
- Sponsor a competition at your local fete;
- Volunteer for a social housing charity;
- Put yourself forward as an ‘expert’ voice for local radio or the local newspaper (journalists love having contacts for a particular sector that they can ring right away);
- Join the community council for your area or local business groups.