Russell Savage of Whitman & Co takes the long view of Chiswick’s property market
‘As an agent who has worked in Chiswick since 1988, sometimes I pinch myself when it comes to valuations. You might have seen a house in Grove Park in the late 80s and advised the owner to ask £99,950. Now, with the same property, you’re saying £999,950! It makes you stop in your tracks.’
With so much local experience, Russell Savage, co-founder of Whitman & Co, is well placed to recall the transformation of the W4 market. ‘What hasn’t changed, however, is that Chiswick has always been a desirable place to live,’ he adds. ‘Having arrived, people like to stay, whether that means upsizing, downsizing or letting.’
Following a career as a navigator in the Merchant Navy and a period in financial services, Russell joined Tyser Greenwood, which was where he met James Matthews. In 1995 the pair bought Whitman & Co, a Chiswick company which had been established in the 1920s by Colonel Whitman, who was also a coal merchant.
Russell has worked on all sides of the agency, initially running sales, then becoming involved in the commercial department and now focusing on lettings and residential investments. ‘James and I have always believed in being straightforward and realistic. Over the years, I’ve seen many examples of properties being valued astronomically to secure the instruction. If that’s the case, we pass. We quote figures that we’re convinced we can achieve. That pays dividends
in the long run.
‘The other fundamental, of course, is the people. Our team is friendly and efficient and, unusually for estate agents, they don’t come and go. You can buy or sell a property with us and return five years later and deal with the same person. That is very important.’
Over the last two years, lettings and property management have become increasingly integral to Whitman’s business. ‘Whatever the sector, our philosophy and principles remain the same. The fact that we have such a high percentage of personal recommendations for both sales and letting tells us that we must be doing something right!’
Whitman & Co
5-7 Turnham Green Terrace,
Chiswick W4 1RG