What are the prospects for the property sector in Yorkshire and Humber?
Speaking to a lot of my peers both in industrial and office agency, they are all positive about the next 12 months.
We have already seen a significant number of transactions to date in 2018 and the general consensus is that this will continue, providing good opportunities for those working in the region’s property and construction industries.
However, there are some challenges particularly with a lack of grade A office stock in Leeds, requiring more new build office development to be brought forward to meet demand.
What is the best project you have been involved in?
One of the most rewarding projects recently was assisting Barnsley Council in reviewing and assessing bids for PIF2 funding. It’s great to see a local authority being proactive and looking to support local developers in bringing forward developments that should benefit their local economy.
What is your favourite building in the region and why?
Being based in Leeds my favourite property is St Pauls House in Park Square as it’s a great example of a period property dating back to 1898 that reflects the history and heritage of the city. York Minster is also always inspiring.
If you could change one thing to improve the property industry in this region, what would it be?
I believe there is still a lot of innovation required in property and hopefully technology and modular forms of construction will improve efficiency and quality of construction.
Technology has certainly improved the quality and speed of information distribution on projects, but there is still work to do to move away from the often adversarial nature of a client’s professional team vs contractor in a lot of contracts.
It would be great to see further innovation in tendering/procurement with a view to more positive partnering arrangements.
Who has inspired you?
One of my earliest employers, Ken Ashford, from APS Chartered Surveyors in London, was influential in developing my early career and showing that with hard work and commitment you can develop and expand an independent surveying practice to compete with the best in the industry.