Behind the Scenes: Alex Dowding
Tuesday, March 04, 2014 by Douglas And Gordon
Tell us a little bit about yourself. Where did you grow up? Whereabouts do you live now?
I grew up in South Oxfordshire and UAE and have lived in Earlsfield for the last 5 years
How long have you been an estate agent for?
I have been a letting agent for nine years in July.
How long have you worked for D&G?
Have worked for Douglas & Gordon for five years in July.
What’s the funniest story you have from your time at Douglas & Gordon?
Working in Northcote Road as a negotiator I had an early viewing about 9am at a tenanted flat. It was all booked in he was going to be at work. I knocked on the front door to no answer, it was double locked so I assumed the house was empty. As we went to the loft bedroom I let the female applicant go in first. And there he was, lying stark naked, face up on the bed. We closed the door quickly and I never heard anything more. I can only assume he must have been out drinking, over slept, and was either too embarrassed to say anything or didn’t wake up. She didn’t take the flat.
When you’re not in the office or showing people around, what do you do in your spare time? Any interesting hobbies we should know about?
I am a keen cyclist and have cycled Paris Roubaix, Tour of Flaunders, the Etap, London to Paris and Lands End to London. I also like anything travel related
What questions do you most commonly get asked by clients/customers?
What’s happening with the sales market?
What advice do you have for people looking to rent in Southfields & Earlsfield?
The good property will go quickly and most lets go within five viewings, so don’t hang around if you see something you like. Most landlords like long tenancies so be prepared to commit to at least a year without a break clause and sometimes longer to make your offer stand out from the rest.
What do you love about Southfields & Earlsfield? What are your favourite hangouts? Where do you grab your coffee in the morning, or take a business lunch?
Southfields is a very friendly place and people actually know their neighbours (unusual for London). Everyone who knows Southfields will know Chanteroy which is a great French deli - the baguettes are great and the Earl Spencer is fantastic if not busy for a Sunday Roast. Earlsfield is great 20 minutes door to door along the South bank. If you’re staying locally, the relaxed atmosphere at Mels in Earlsfield is good for breakfast or brunch at the weekend. There is also a nice steak restaurant called Roxie and Cah-Chiif you like Korean. Finally, it has three pubs and two bars so there is plenty of choice for a local night out.
If you could wave a magic wand what would you change about the property market?
I would reform stamp duty land tax, not just the slab approach, which is unfair and distorts the market. I would also change the amount we pay with rising property prices - it is just going up at an inflation busting rate and makes moving home expensive or almost impossible for some.