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Small Developers Real Takeaways From 2020

Alex Harrington-Griffin, Chief Executive of TrustedLand, comments

Five of the ‘100 Real Developers of 2020’ closed shop last year. It’s tough reading for us as organisers, as you always hope the final selection are super-stable and resilient. Sometimes though, external challenges like global pandemics are just too much to handle. The reason I heard most often was about internal finance structures, build complications and being over-committed to private investors.

It is always amazing when you see courses or mentors promoting the huge profits and advantages of property development, but rarely do they discuss what happens when things go wrong, or how to deal with the problems. It probably wouldn't’ sell courses to be frank. And when looking back, many of the current trainers promoting their ‘expertise’ haven’t actually been through the tough times to teach it.

So when we had the opportunity to check in with some of the SME Developers featured in the newly released Real Developer 2021 Index, and understand what they learnt about last year, I felt it was worth sharing, to give us all a real view of the sector that often boasts about the many millions being made, but rarely the millions lost. Achieving the former, is where the real skill is.

In the first of a two-part article series, we asked five of the established firms recognised in Real Developers 2021 what they felt they learned from their experiences in 2020:

Oliver Dudley, In5 Group (10 Previous Projects): “This is more about being re-re-re-reminded, rather a new learning – that you make your money the day you purchase, not sell, in the property development industry – no matter if you buy pre planning or post and build out. For us, this is down to key relationships with the source of the deal.

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