Northwood gave us the building blocks to develop our lettings empire

With a total of 30 years’ lettings experience, Brian King and Scott Wilding are building a lettings empire across the A127 corridor.

Scott opened Northwood Romford in 2001, when Northwood was a company still in its infancy. It was just the third office of the network to open. Today, 12 years later, Northwood has an impressive network of over 75 offices across the UK.

Brian came on board with Scott in 2004 and the two have worked together ever since, with Brian becoming partner and then franchisee in 2011. They opened Northwood Southend in 2006 and the latest addition to the network, Northwood Basildon, opened in November 2012.

“It’s a result of sheer hard work to get to where we are today,” says Brian. “I have been interested in property from an early age and started working in the lettings industry when I was still a boy at the age of 17. Scott then asked me to join Northwood Romford as Sales Manager eight years ago.

“I haven’t looked back since and have quickly worked my way through the ranks. Northwood really does offer excellent training and, with the company’s support and help from tutors at Northwood HQ, in 2011 I completed the NVQ Level 4 Residential Property Lettings and Management after a year’s intensive course. The next, natural step was to become partner and to achieve my ambition of becoming a franchisee.

“Today business is flourishing,” continues Brian. “Home ownership in England has fallen to its lowest level for 25 years, to 65.3 per cent of households. As first time buyers are struggling to get mortgages, the private rental market is buoyant and there’s never been a greater need for professional and responsible letting agents.

“Our results speak for themselves. This year the turnover of the Romford office is £2.8 million. The opening of Northwood Basildon is a really exciting next step in building our business. It is ideally placed in between Southend and Romford to cater to the heavily populated rental market of the town. We now manage a portfolio of 425 properties across the three offices.

“Northwood provides an excellent framework to grow your own business: we are the first franchisees to operate three offices and our plan is to open a fourth in Dagenham within two years. I have no doubt that an exciting future is ahead of us and wouldn’t hesitate to recommend

Northwood to anyone considering a sound franchise opportunity in a sector that is bucking the economic downturn.” Northwood started life in Portsmouth in 1995. Since then it has expanded steadily and, over the past five years, is defying the recession by growing 20 per cent, year on year.

The business represents a unique business model within the lettings market. The ‘Guaranteed Rent’ service – a minimum 12-month contract to the landlord, during which Northwood manages every aspect of the tenancy and effectively becomes the tenant – it has been the cornerstone to its success. This is a significant point of difference in the market and over 13,000 landlords are Investment Required from £39,950 + VAT currently enjoying risk and hassle-free rent. It’s a proven and profitable strategy that has cemented Northwood as a leader in property franchise opportunities.