Top Five Property Management
‘It started with me on a motorbike with a toolbox on the back,’ says former estate agent Collingwood, who founded London Management Company after a bad experience of his own.
‘In 2009 I rented a flat, which was being managed by a well-known estate agent,’ he says. ‘My boiler broke in the middle of winter and it took them three weeks to fix it and I was furious.’
Collingwood spotted a market opening up for property management with a high level of service. ‘A lot of foreign money was flowing into London after the credit crunch,’ he explains. ‘I thought, “Who is managing these properties? Not just the letting stock, but more importantly the pieds-à-terre?”’
LMC now looks after 60 per cent pieds-à-terre and 40 per cent rented properties, worth between £700,000 and £40 million-plus, for a starting annual subscription of £3,500. The service is personalised.
‘We don’t put our clients in a box,’ he says. ‘We’ll stock the fridge, look after your car, put fresh linen on the beds, make sure the boiler or the internet’s working, and do your cleaning and maintenance.’
More obscure requests have ranged from removing a bee from a bedroom to providing a private screening of Star Wars: The Force Awakens on the release date — but this is not the core of the business, he stresses. ‘I’ve never wanted it to be a concierge company. Our clients already have people lined up to do that job,’ he says.