According to the latest figures published by Rightmove, Whitman & Co is once again ranked the Number One Chiswick agency for both sales and lettings. The Turnham Green Terrace agent has sold 23% of all properties in W4 and arranged 10% of all lettings.
For Sales Director Chris Chalmers, there’s no mystery to the company’s consistent success. ‘We have always used a small, close-knit team that concentrates solely on Chiswick and its immediate surroundings and, most importantly, knows the streets like the back of their hand. It’s a simple philosophy, but it has stood us in excellent stead.
‘Recently we calculated how many years we’ve all been living in the area and working inb property. Even we were surprised by the figures!
Collectively, we’ve been local residents for 373 years and we’ve spent 224 years in the industry: that’s with a relatively small team and, what’s more, we have just said goodbye to one of our longest serving members of staff.’
No one better epitomises the local focus than Chris, who was born and raised in W4 and joined the company in 2002. ‘Many of our negotiators have “learned Chiswick” while gaining experience with us,’ he explains.
‘For example, Tom Allen and Andy Ogden (Lettings and Sales respectively) joined to look after weekend viewings – Tom was a student at ArtsEd and Andy had worked for BA – and they subsequently became full-time. By then, they had a solid grounding in working here.
‘For the same reason, we believe in playing an active role in Chiswick life. We work with people on a day-to-day basis and see them at every stage of their lives, so it’s important that we pitch in and support local clubs, charities and schools.’
This year to date, Whitman & Co has completed over 150 sales transactions, and one of the keys has been a realistic approach to valuations. ‘The volume of sales we conduct means that we understand pricing street by street and property by property,’ explains Chris.
‘We always quote figures that we are convinced we can achieve, not ones to secure an instruction, and that pays dividends. Also, we’re transparent and honest, we flag up issues and we try to solve them without fuss. If you are straightforward, people trust and respect you – and will come back.’
Over the past few months, one of the most encouraging signs in the market has been a revival in the demand for lettings. This has been driven by the number of people returning to work in London, even if that means splitting the week between home and office. ‘That has definitely had a positive impact on lettings,’ says Chris. ‘New lets have been snapped up in a matter of days, with some family houses going to best bids.’
‘That resurgence has also been reflected in the corporate sector, with many exciting new ventures opening their doors on the High Road. While talk of an imminent interest rate rise may impact the buoyancy of the market, there’s no doubt that Chiswick continues to attract new buyers and businesses.
‘If you need any advice about buying, selling or letting a property in Chiswick, we would be delighted to help. Do pop in and say hello or follow us on Social Media – we look forward to talking to you.’