The timing of the move may say quite a lot about the strength of the local market after what everyone concedes have been several years of very difficult times for local sellers.
Homelink managing director Ian Lobban (pictured seated, left, above) says the investment in Cumbernauld is really just a natural extension of the firm’s long-established presence in Motherwell and Coatbridge, but has been timed to take advantage – long term – of what’s seen as a gap in the market.
“We launched in Motherwell all those years ago at the same time as about four other agents, and have proved a long term player there where others have moved on,” he says.
“We aim to use our local knowledge to get people the sort of results they expect, starting with realistic ask prices for properties and advertising and promotion that really works.
“Because we’re a ‘new’ name to many in Cumbernauld we’ve got opening deals too, but really all we want to do is extend the success we’ve won in other parts of Lanarkshire to this area – with the message that we are very much ‘here to stay’”.
Homelink covers the entire property spectrum, from the ritziest des res in Westerwood, Craigmarloch or Dullatur to the entry-level maisonette, and the whole private rented sector.
“We have to work hard for every person we deal with, because where property acquisition is concerned it is usually going to be the biggest thing, finance wise, the person concerned will ever have done,” says Ian.
“We know it is no good simply posting property details in all the obvious places and hoping things will work out well, because if people are still waiting for a result six months down the line they’ll be right to wonder why things haven’t turned out as they thought”.
Homelink’s town centre office is, as Ian’s colleague, Cumbernauld branch director Gary Mitchell (pictured right, above) observes, the sort of fixture you’d expect to see in Glasgow’s West End, which is a hot spot for estate agents. And in fact, it has been deliberately set up that way to convey to local residents that the firm is making a major commitment to the area.
“We just got the new office sorted but we’re already delighted by the response we’ve been getting from people who’ve seen us in other towns and know that we have a strong, long-established Lanarkshire presence,” said Ian.
“As we get to know people as clients we’ll do what we’ve done in every other area where the focused Homelink approach has worked so well, and provide them with a service that realistic, honest and informed – based on an appreciation of how the local market ticks”.
“We are having an Open Day this Saturday from 10am to 1pm, and will look forward to chatting with prospective buyers or sellers over a glass of Champagne, including people who have perhaps had their home on the market for a while – and maybe also to local landlords we may be able to assist.”