Redstones Franchise : Investment & Innovation At Its Best

At Redstones, our franchisees come from all walks of life and previous experience in the lettings or property management sector isn’t essential to succeed. Our comprehensive training programme covers every aspect of running your own lettings agency, including overcoming some of the most difficult challenges in this competitive market.

Our recent testimonial from Brinder Bains, a former electrical contractor and now franchisee of Richmond reflects the thoroughness of our training.

In contrast, the most recent addition to our network, our Ilford franchisee Jeya Ruban, has several years of experience in both letting and managing properties.

Having just completed his training course with Redstones, we asked Ruban for his initial feedback, particularly on the technological systems which are essential for the efficient running of a lettings agency:-

Here’s his response:-

‘Whilst it is difficult for me to write a testimonial as an experienced landlord who has been letting and managing properties over several years where I learnt the entire process “the hard way”, I found the entire process very encouraging to commit into building the new franchise.

The management systems in place are excellent.  I particularly found the back office system useful as it has built in functionality for each and every aspect of property management.’

Ruban also has extensive experience in financial services and his own substantial property portfolio. His Ilford branch of Redstones will open early in the New Year and we’ll be bringing news of his launch through this blog.

As well as our state-of-the art-technology that supports both our front and back office systems, Redstones’ groundbreaking expertise takes advantage of all that online marketing has to offer.

This investment and innovation offers significant benefits to our franchisees and includes:-

SEO strategy and pay-per-click : Today’s marketing takes place ‘in the cloud’ with 80% of all property searches now carried out online  Our attention to detail with both our SEO and pay-per-click has resulted in a notable online presence.

Dedicated micro-site : Every Redstones franchisee is provided with their own unique micro-site to promote their business extensively within their chosen territory to property owners, buyers and sellers. This is underpinned with Redstones ongoing brand marketing.

Premier online marketing : Redstones provides its franchisees with the latest in walk-through technology to produce detailed brochures and 3D floor plans for their clients.

On-line auction :  For clients wishing to sell their property quickly, our online auction services fits the bill. Our franchisees benefit from this additional marketing tool which recommends the modern method of auction.

Launch of our new app : Staying ahead of the crowd, our latest marketing tool is the introduction of our exclusive Redstones app, which enables our clients to request a property valuation, keep up-to-date with all of the latest news via our blog and find their nearest Redstones office. This exciting new product is available via the iTunes App Store and Google Play Store.

To find out more about the advantages of investing in a Redstones franchise, contact us today. Please note that our franchise fee is increasing with effect from 1st January 2015.

For more information, please refer to our previous blog Change Your Life : Start 2015 With A Redstones Franchise

Redstones - DEAN in his Office

Change Your Life : Start 2015 With A Redstones Franchise

For would-be entrepreneurs seeking a forward looking franchise, Redstones has always offered a value for money investment with a franchise fee of £11,995.

With our ongoing investment in the brand, that fee is rising with effect from 1st January 2015 to £14,995 which still offers an extremely cost-effective route into a competitive industry sector.

With a New Year on the horizon, there’s never been a better time to seize this opportunity to change your life and invest in a reputable franchise brand.

In recent blogs we have highlighted some of the additional income streams available to Redstones franchisees which add up to a more intelligent business model in a competitive market sector.

These include:-

Redstones Financial Services – Our innovative, independent financial services company offering solutions to the financial requirements of our clients, from finding a mortgage, to arranging car insurance.  This innovative marketing tool enables our franchisees to provide a ‘one stop shop’ solution to the financial needs of potential customers, from tenants to property owners and their families.

Utility Warehouse : Our membership of Utility Warehouse enables our franchisees to offer prospective tenants an invaluable way of keeping down their household bills during the period of their tenancy agreement. With the continual rise in living costs this is a timely addition to the Redstones brand.

Platinum Total Care service : One of our flagship marketing tools, this unique service gives landlords peace of mind by guaranteeing that their rent is paid on time every month, regardless of whether or not payment has been received from the tenant.  For a franchisee, it means another advantage when it comes to winning new business.

Switch Agents : For landlords or property sellers dissatisfied with the service offered by their existing lettings or estate agent, our Switch Agents facility gives our franchisees an easy way of moving their business to Redstones.

Larger than average territories : Redstones franchise network was designed with the franchisee as a priority.  Our territories are based on population rather than postcode, giving each of our franchisees the opportunity to build a successful business.  Each franchisee is allocated a generous territory covering around 250,000 people which equates to approximately 100,000 chimney pots.

Unrivalled customer service : Redstones is known for consistently delivering on its promise of outstanding customer service.  Our abovementioned Platinum Total Care and Switch Agents services are just two examples of how our franchisees can easily separate themselves from the competition.

State-of-the-art marketing : Our continual investment in the latest technology has to offer ensures that all of our franchisees benefit from a notable online presence as well as their own dedicated Redstones micro-site.

You’ll find more reasons to invest in a Redstones video from our founder Manjit Virdi in the following video:-

Make 2015 the year you change your life.  Contact us today to discuss the opportunities available to you as a Redstones franchisee.  All agreements signed before 31st December 2014 will benefit from the current franchise fee of £11,995.

For more information and advice, read our previous blog From Employee To Franchisee In 4 Steps With Redstones

Redstones Property Management

6 Essential Property Maintenance Tips For Landlords

As a landlord, property maintenance is one of your main responsibilities. The better the condition of your property, the happier your tenants will be and the greater the chance of your tenancy agreement being renewed.

Here’s our advice on how every landlord can effectively manage property maintenance:-

Obtain quotes

As a landlord, it’s important to strike a balance when choosing a suitable tradesperson to carry out repairs on your property.  Avoid the so-called ‘cowboy’ builders who may be cheap but carry out a shoddy job. You are responsible for ensuring your property is more than habitable. Obtaining a number of quotes will allow you to choose a quality builder at a cost effective price.

Establish relationships

For landlords with established or expanding property portfolios you may need to call on reliable tradespeople on regular occasions. Establishing a relationship with a trustworthy company or a number of individuals means the next time you need a builder, plumber, electrician or gas engineer you have a list of contacts to call on. Creating a list of multiple contacts means that you have several options available, which is essential if your property requires emergency repairs.

Carry out regular inspections

At Redstones we recommend that mid-term inspections are carried out during the period of your tenancy agreement. This gives you the advantage of ensuring there are no problems with your tenants and is a common sense precautionary measure.  For more information, you may find our previous blog helpful Renting Your Property? Why You Need A Mid-Term Inspection.

Deal with issues immediately

If you are aware of a minor maintenance issue, you must respond promptly to avoid it escalating into a major problem. Your tenants will also be happier if they are confident their landlord will quickly rectify issues with the property, whether it’s a leaking tap or a broken down boiler.  Don’t let it drag on, it will only cost you more in the long run and may mean you breach your legal obligations as a landlord.

Focus on safety

The safety of your tenants must be your top priority.  As a first step, ensure that all boilers and gas fires are regularly serviced to minimise the chances of future problems and ensure your tenants’ safety.  With regular crackdowns on landlords who fail to comply with legal requirements, you must stay fully updated on changes to the law.

Consider engaging a property management specialist

For some landlords, keeping up with the pressure of their responsibilities can be stressful. Letting your property through an experienced property management specialist offers a number of advantages:-

  • Mid-term inspections are carried out on time.
  • All relevant checks, including gas and electrical safety tests, are carried out on a timely basis.
  • Property maintenance issues are dealt with promptly on your behalf.
  • You will receive regular updates of changes or additions to your legal obligations as a landlord.
  • Reduced stress levels!

At Redstones, growing numbers of our clients are choosing our comprehensive property management option for their peace of mind.

Contact us today to discuss the property management option that’s most suitable for you.

For more information on your obligations as a landlord read our recent blog 8 Landlord Obligations You Need To Know

Redstones Residential Sales

House Prices Are At All Time High – Is It Time To Sell?

Updated statistics on house sales released this week have revealed that the price of houses in England and Wales are at an all-time high.

Does this mean now is the optimum time to sell?

The answer, as always, isn’t straightforward.

The report, from the Nationwide Building Society, revealed a 0.5% month rise in house values to an average £189,333 during October, a contrast to the slight fall seen in September.  For property owners who are weighing up their options, a number of factors need to be taken into consideration, including the following:-

  • House price growth has slowed slightly overall for the last two months and the Nationwide suggests it has lost some momentum.
  • The number of mortgage approvals in September represented a 14 month low.

Having said that, there are several additional issues to take into account:-

  • Homeowners wishing to downsize may find it a particularly favourable market right now.
  • With the economy still growing, many experts suggest that this slowdown is only temporary.
  • As we draw nearer to Christmas buyers typically put their purchasing plans on hold so a seasonal slowdown is traditionally expected from the end of November and should be regarded as normal.

It is also anticipated that with growing consumer confidence, falling unemployment and record low mortgage interest rates, buyer interest in properties will remain high.

Is renting your property an alternative?

The saleability of your property is influenced by a number of variables, including its location and the market trends unique to your area. While uncertainty over the housing market continues, the private rental market is thriving. The average monthly rent is at an all-time high in England and Wales and while month-on-month increases may slow down, the overall trend is still upward. Nor is this rise limited to London and the South East; both the North West and the East of England are competing with the capital in the private rentals market.

For property owners considering selling but unsure of the best way forward, talk to a reputable agent with a track record and reputation for customer service. Your local Redstones office will be able to advise on the most appropriate way forward for your unique circumstances.

Selling via auction

At Redstones, we know from experience that the housing market can remain stubbornly unpredictable regardless of current trends.  Some properties may be difficult to sell all year round for a variety of reasons outside the owner’s control.

Homeowners who need to sell their property quickly regardless of the timing or circumstances may wish to consider selling via auction. Redstones offers the modern method of auction for residential properties falling into this category. Our previous article, Should You Sell Your Property At Auction? provides more information for property owners considering this route to market.

Whatever your reason for selling, it’s vital to consider all of the options available to ensure you achieve the best possible price. Contact Redstones today to discuss the most appropriate route for you.

For potential buyers seeking the best mortgage deal, Redstones Financial guarantees to find the most cost effective mortgage for your personal financial situation.

You may also find our previous article Selling Your House? Get Your Timing Right helpful.

Meet Brinder Bains : Our Richmond Franchisee

As part of our occasional series of articles featuring our new franchisees, we recently spoke to Brinder Bains, our Richmond franchisee, to get his personal insight into why he chose Redstones.

Welcome to Redstones Brinder! Tell us about your career prior to becoming a franchisee

It’s been quite an interesting road to life as a Redstones franchisee. I trained as an electrician in my younger days and branched off into residential property quite early on. At the time, it mainly consisted of buying the odd flat, renovating where necessary and then renting it out. Somewhere in all of this I ended up buying my local Indian restaurant and running that for almost 10 years before selling it and returning to my electrician roots!

So immediately prior to launching your franchise you were working as an electrician?

Yes, I was working on electrical contracting and property maintenance for landlords.

When did you find out about franchising?

I seemed to spend a lot of time and effort preparing properties for landlords to let. It occurred to me to be a natural progress to start offering that service to my landlords, as I had been doing that for my own properties for some years too. Franchising seemed the natural route.

Why did you chose franchising over an employed career?

 Having been in business all of my life, employment was never really an option for me.

Why did you choose Redstones over other lettings agency franchises on the market?

Having known Redstones founder, Manjit Virdi, for a number of years, there was never any doubt that Manjit could and would only ever be involved in something solid and worthwhile.

The support of your family is obviously important when launching your own business. Will your wife be involved in the running of your franchise?

The plan is for my wife to take an active part in the running of the business. We do hope to employ staff progressively and maybe tailor our own roles as time passes.

How did you raise the finances required to invest in your Redstones franchise?

All of my investment came from my savings.

How have you found the training and support you received from Redstones?

I have received every ounce of support I would have expected to receive from Manjit and Redstones. It has been as easy as can be so far. I feel I have all the tools at my disposal to build as big a business as I endeavour to build.

What challenges have you faced while getting to know your new business?

 The analogy I prefer to use takes me back to my restaurant days. ‘If the bin hadn’t been emptied, I had to do it myself’. What I suppose I mean is, all of the minute things about setting up a business have been down to me. I don’t have any staff as yet and have found myself carrying out a range of tasks, from buying stationary to populating my own Redstones micro-site. Whilst it certainly takes up your time, the satisfaction of edging slowly closer to launch is wonderful.

What ‘highs’ have you experienced with your Redstones franchise?

 Taking delivery of my sign boards was definitely very exciting. Seeing one erected outside a property is deeply satisfying.

What are your plans for the future?

To build a solid sustainable business and develop a strong presence in my territory.

What would your advice be to someone thinking of buying a franchise?

When it comes to an estate agency franchise I could only recommend Redstones above any other brand. I have no experience of any other franchise, but knowing what I know about Manjit and Redstones, I can’t imagine feeling any more comfortable and content.

Thank you Brinder and we wish you every success with your new Redstones franchise.

Brinder launched his Redstones franchise in Richmond on 15th October.

For more information on becoming a franchisee with Redstones, contact Manjit Virdi today.

Redstones Walsall Estate Agents

From Employee To Franchisee In 4 Steps With Redstones

Unemployment might be falling but with the rise in zero-hours contracts and low paid jobs, hard working professionals are seeking ways of creating their own financial security.

Franchising is only one of those options yet is increasingly becoming one of the most popular. The opportunity to join a successful, established brand and create a business of their own is a magnet to growing numbers of would-be entrepreneurs who recognise the benefits of becoming a franchisee.

The urge to become a franchisee generally comes down to one thing – the need to be in control of your own destiny but how do you make the transition from employee to business owner?

Every new franchisee should be prepared for four essential steps:-

Coming to terms with change : As a franchisee and business owner your daily agenda is something that you must set, manage and adhere to.  While the franchise business model will provide guidance on running your business, new franchisees may find it challenging in the early period. You no longer have an employer dictating your daily timetable!  For franchisees working from a serviced office or high street premises, like Redstones, this is much easier than home based franchises where the potential for distractions is much greater.

Access to suitable resources : In the early stages of a new franchise, you may be working alone. In this case, you will be managing your time by winning new business, looking after new clients and in the case of a Redstones franchise, finding and assessing tenants too.  Getting that balance right can be precarious which is why the support of your franchisor is vital.  Redstones is on hand during your business launch and to accompany you to your first appointments with potential customers if required.

Dealing with challenges :  As every business owner will tell you, the first year is always the most challenging.  As a franchisee, the buck stops with you when it comes to resolving challenges in your business. With a reputable franchise brand and support team in place, however, there won’t be any issues you are facing that haven’t been encountered before. At Redstones, our experienced support team are on hand around the clock to help you with any issues you face as you begin to establish your new franchise.

Confidence in the brand : New business owners often struggle with confidence while establishing their reputation. With a franchise like Redstones, the reputation of the brand as innovative, forward thinking and with unparalleled customer service is already firmly in place. Our unique marketing proposition includes our Platinum Total Care Service, Switch Agents facility and a number of additional income streams exclusive to our franchisees.  You’ll find more information in our recent article 7 Unique Benefits of a Redstones Franchise.

If you’re thinking of making the step from employee to franchisee but don’t know where to start contact Redstones today to find out more about becoming an owner of a successful Redstones franchise.

To discover more about life as a Redstones franchisee you might find our previous article help –  5 More Reasons to Choose Redstones As Your Franchisor.