Eddie Hooker, Chief Executive Officer at my|deposits, one of three government-authorised tenancy deposit protection schemes, explains why he is proud to be sponsoring the NLA’s Property Women Awards.
It is safe to say that the private-rented sector often gets a bad press. We all know that bad news sells newspapers, so we regularly hear of appalling tales in the media of landlords who don’t fulfil their obligations to their tenants, or stories of tenants who don’t respect the property they live in. But whilst these stories are hitting the headlines, there are many examples of good practice out there in the industry.
The stories from this year’s NLA Property Women Awards are truly inspiring and this year’s judging panel, on which my|deposits and Hamilton Fraser had a seat as headline sponsors, heard them all. From those who lost all financial security but went on to build up a property portfolio worth over £2 million, to others who have been nominated by their tenants for being an “exceptional landlord and friend”.
The winners of the awards this year have successfully built themselves financial security with impressive property portfolios, but at the same time haven’t compromised when it comes to providing a home for their tenants. One winner re-decorates according to a tenant’s individual taste and another even helps her tenant’s manage their utility bills to find the most cost-effective provider.
These women go above and beyond the call of duty as landlords, which is why the NLA is so keen to celebrate their success and why my|deposits is proud to support these examples of best industry practice.
Crucially, the awards also celebrate those working in a support role to the private-rented sector, including lettings agents and local authorities, or those within the ‘third sector’, such as housing charities.
The issue of under-representation of women within the property sector is of course one for further debate. NLA research has found that the gender balance in the property industry currently stands at about 65/35. There are no prizes for guessing which way the scales are weighted, but the good news is that female representation does break the 30 per cent barrier that other industries – such as the media – struggle to meet.
But it’s not just women who are making a great contribution to the industry of course, and this would undoubtedly be strengthened further if the awards were opened up to everyone.
Either way, the standard across the board is always exceptionally high and above all, the NLA Property Women Awards provide a fantastic opportunity for fellow property professionals to learn from current best practice. I for one believe strongly in the importance of celebrating all kinds of best practice in property in order to further encourage improvement.
Maybe we should be taking more time out to take a step back and applaud those who are making a real contribution and difference.
For tickets, or more information visit www.propertywomenawards.org.uk and keep an eye out on the blog for news on this year’s winners and success stories.