Hunters franchise owner is off to a flying start

Independent estate agent, Hunters, welcomes new franchise owner, Lester Hurst, to its expanding network of offices and personal agents

Experiencing the property business from the “other side of the fence” has got Lester Hurst’s new agency off to a flying start. He launched a personal agency of the well-known property group Hunters back in September, covering the Ilkley, Otley and Guiseley areas and has been so successful he has since opened office premises in Ilkley.

“I had been involved in property for 15 years but as an investor rather than an estate agent,” explains Lester, who has been so successful he is currently looking for suitable premises to provide a ‘shop front’ presence in the area.

“What prompted me to open this business was that each time I either bought or sold a property I was let down. It made me convinced that I could do a better job and six months on, other people seem to be agreeing.

“There’s no point pretending that this is an easy market but old-fashioned hard work and personal service seems to be paying off. All my clients have my mobile telephone number and it’s not unusual for me to be talking to them at 9pm or before 8am.

“If I say I’ll return a call I do – that was one of my biggest complaints with estate agencies I had used previously – and the buck is never passed to someone else. It’s my business and I deal with the client every step of the way; they’re not passed on to somebody else.”

As a seller of property, Lester says he often found himself chasing his estate agent, asking if they had got any feedback from viewers or spoken to solicitors to help push a sale through.

“It annoyed me that I was paying for a service but always seemed to be sorting things out myself,” explains Lester. “I pride myself on always being one step ahead. Nobody has to chase me.”

September was a busy month for 36-year-old Lester. Not only did he open his new business but he also got married.

“I’m in this for the long term,” he said. “I’d like to thank people for their support in these first six months and urge others to give me a try. Building a reputation takes a long time but through hard work – I’m eating, breathing and sleeping property – I am convinced that business will go from strength-to-strength. In the current economic climate a personal agency and all the one-to-one service it offers, backed by the national mailing lists and exposure of a team like Hunters, makes sense.”

September saw the opening of the new, and very stylish, Hunters Ilkley.

Situated in Crescent Court on Brook Street, the office had an extremely successful launch; attendees and Hunters team members alike commenting on the stunning Murray Hurst Interiors’ designed space. Lester was delighted with the turn out and feedback, and is looking forward to welcoming clients through Hunters Ilkley doors.

Written by Sarah Todd