Mark Manning, managing director of Manning Stainton, which has 19 sales and letting branches in Leeds, Harrogate, Wetherby and Wakefield.
How did you end up working in property?
A: I grew up in the world of estate agency and after university I decided that this was the place for me. One of the first lessons I learnt from my father was that this is a people business rather than a property business, and it’s the customers who define how successful we are.
How is the housing market faring in your area?
A: We cover a large part of the region and I would say that overall the property market in these areas has remained buoyant. In my opinion this is due to an excess of demand for homes and a shortage of supply. I believe that this is a problem that will not go away for the foreseeable future.
Are there any up-and-coming places?
A: The areas to the east of Leeds are seeing a real surge in activity at the moment. So, Crossgates, Garforth and the surrounding areas are definitely the ones to watch over the coming few years. The outer ring road is changing to provide greater connectivity and land is either being built on or has been optioned off for development. We forecast the growth of Meanwood in Leeds and the change in Headingley and that has come to fruition.
If you were the Housing Minister what would you do?
We have such a constraint on supply so my focus would be on how best to bring more properties to the market. We need to speed up the planning process. We also need to help small and medium size developers to build more homes and we need to ensure that we dedicate more resource to helping the construction side of the process in order to speed up new-build completions.
What are the best and worst things about working in property?
A:The best bit about working in property has to be the people you meet in this job. I also enjoy being part of a team that helps our customers through what is often a very significant life change - whether that’s good or bad. Where and what is your ideal home?
Ok, this is a bit cheesy, but I don’t mind where and what the home is, just as long as it is filled with the people that are important to me and contains lots of love and laughter.