‘Treat clients like your own mum’ says estate agency founder
The founder of an independent London estate agency marking its 20th anniversary has revealed the secret of his success so far – to “treat clients like they were your own mother”.
So says Steve Wayne, founder of two-branch firm Benjamin Stevens, which has re-branded to coincide with the milestone, which it is marking today.
The estate agency, based in NW London, was launched in January 2004 from a modest serviced office in Mill Hill when Steve was aged just 22 years old, having had only three years’ experience within the property industry.
Since then, he and his team have grown and developed the business which now operates large and successful residential and commercial sales, lettings and property management departments as well as a well-established block management arm and an in-house auctions department.
Its branches are in Edgware (since 2004) and Bushey (since 2009), currently covering Edgware, Mill Hill, Burnt Oak, Colindale, Kingsbury, Stanmore, Wembley, Harrow, Bushey, Oxhey, Watford, Borehamwood and all surrounding areas.
But the agency also launched a hybrid ‘hub’ offering In September 2018.
“Since then, the number of Partner Agents working on a self-employed basis under the Benjamin Stevens brand who have joined our Hub model has tripled in size,” says Steve. “They are all local area experts, covering the entire London, Greater London areas.
In 2014 the agency was invited to become members of the Guild of Property Professionals.”
Steve and his team of loyal staff, many of whom have been working there since its early years, describe themselves as “one big dysfunctional work family”.
They say the secret to their success is the fact that they care about their clients. Their record over the past two decades, is having re-sold the same house four times – each time the owner returning to Benjamin Stevens to sell the property again, because they were so pleased with the service they received.
Wayne says: “My philosophy has always been to treat clients with the same respect you would want someone to treat your own mum.
“It’s a rule that has paid off time and time again. There will always be a need to for people to buy, sell and lease their properties, but it’s the service you offer that wins you the business.”
Wayne says that at 42 he’s “nowhere near ready for retirement and want to continue growing the business and enjoying what he has achieved so far”.