SDL Surveying was born from the foundation of Direct Valuations in 1989,
through which we provided First Direct and HSBC with a national valuation solution. This panel management approach was the first of its kind, and spawned an entire industry in the UK. Through continuous innovation and relentless drive for improvement, not only do we retain our business with HSBC almost 30 years on, but we now provide our surveying services to many other major lenders across the mortgage industry.
Today SDL Surveying represents a network of surveyors, valuers, property agents and managers across England and Wales, through a combination of our employed surveyors and independent firms.Thanks to the continual strive for innovation across the SDL Group, we continue to drive commercial advantage in property valuations and surveys. Central to this is our roll out of bespoke iPad software, which has helped to improve accountability and facilitated a more efficient approach to our work, both among our in-house surveyors, and with our network of independent firms across the UK.
SDL Property Management brings together our services in lettings, the private rental sector & build to rent, and estate & residential management. By combining these services under one umbrella, we are uniquely-placed to combine the SDL Group’s signature personal service with the backing of a major brand with genuine expertise across all of these disciplines. In particular, this nationwide coverage enables us to provide industry-leading support in the development and management of investment solutions in the PRS and build to rent sector. Taking projects from inception to ongoing management, the Group’s work with Sigma PLC has proven the viability of PRS investments in the UK. Central to this is our industry-leading lettings provision, provided through our ARLA-qualified staff, property management software and robust processes.
Alongside this is our Estate Management division, incorporating the former CP Bigwood, Alexander Faulkner Partnership and SJ Higgins businesses, which manages over 30,000 units across the UK. We work alongside major developers, such as Bellway, Bovis, Kier and Miller Homes, freeholders and resident management companies, in every case delivering management solutions which are tailored to each development.
Identifying the potential to aggregate property management support across the UK, combining large-scale compliance and insurance support with personal, on the ground service, we introduced SDL Property Partners in October 2017. Providing franchise services to previously self-employed property managers, ambitious property management employees, or sales and lettings agents looking to diversify their services, SDL Property Partners is new to the Estate Management industry, and offers a truly unique and differentiated service to developers, leaseholders and residents management companies in the UK.
The guiding principle for SDL Property Partners was to combine the personal, tailored management solutions that each development requires, with the backing and assurances of a major national business.
Auctions & Agency
SDL Auctions was established following our acquisition of CP Bigwood, Graham Penny Auctions and Humphreys of Chester in 2016. In 2017 alone, our combined SDL Auctions network sold over 1000 lots, raising more than £600m in sales for our vendors across the country. Our auctions are highly publicised both regionally and nationally to ensure our vendors achieve the best possible price for every property. As well as servicing a range of corporate lot introducers, we pride ourselves on bringing sales by auction into the mainstream. We are regularly featured on BBC One’s‘Homes under the Hammer’, helping to showcase auctioning a property as a genuine alternative to selling via private treaty.
Having formed SDL Auctions, our search for innovation and improvement identified the potential for a major auction network to partner with estate agents to promote sales by auction as an additional service. This led to the creation of SDL Auction Partners in 2017. We have invested heavily in the people, technology, training and marketing required to ensure auctions is a seamless extension of our partners’ businesses. We now work with over 300 partners across the UK, providing their vendors with a fast, efficient and secure way to sell properties. Selling predominantly through online auctions, the auction partners approach enables these consumers to choose an approachable and viable alternative to private treaty through our partner agents.
Through the UK licence of global real estate brand CENTURY 21 UK, we provide forward thinking, market-leading business and marketing support to our franchised estate agents across the country. This has led to CENTURY 21 UK organically becoming the fastest growing estate agency franchise in Britain. Our franchisees are provided with a one-to-one, tailored service, which ensures every business owner has the tools they need to make their business a success. The services they offer to vendors and landlords are honed at our company owned office in Chester, and across our network we provide vendors, purchasers, landlords and tenants with a personal, one-touch service.
Our mortgage network, the Stonebridge Group, is one of the fastest growing Finance and Protection specialists in the UK. Stonebridge offer a broad and bespoke advisory service to a wide range of clients – giving us the ability to provide assistance and advice about the full range of finance and insurance products. The bespoke financial solutions we offer through Stonebridge and its appointed representatives led to the business being named Best Mortgage Network at the 2017 Mortgage Strategy Awards.
Our MoneyQuest business provides telephone-based mortgage advice, with qualified advisors working with clients across the UK, as an appointed representative of Stonebridge. Expert at partnering with corporate introducers, we are exclusive mortgage advisors to comparethemarket.com, a relationship which is built on our nationwide coverage and exemplary customer service. Our scale also enables us to tailor our approach to the needs of every introducer, providing them with the advice and expertise that their clients need at times to suit them.
Pure Protect is our specialist insurance broker, driven to deliver the best cover for consumers’ life insurance, critical illness cover, mortgage protection and health insurance. We operate as an appointed representative of the Sesame network. Our team are experts at assessing each individual customers’ needs and finding and arranging the very best protection for them.
In particular, we specialise in working with mortgage brokers to cover insurance provision, freeing our broker clients up to focus on arranging mortgages. We also offer a back book review service, generating additional income for brokers by assessing their client bank and helping their customers to assess existing policies and arrange new and better cover.