Ursula Drake

Head of Marketing

How long have you been in Real Estate?
Just over two years.

What aspect of Real Estate are you an expert in, or what aspect are you most proud of that you do? 
I am not a qualified Real Estate professional, but I know that it takes years of experience, on the job, to really understand this industry! I am proud to support the team in a marketing capacity.

What is the strangest/nicest/most interesting thing you have had to deal with, in your Real Estate career? 
I have been both Landlord and Tenant. As a Tenant, I could never understand my Landlord’s reluctance to remedy basic drainage issues even after receiving expert advice from his Property Manager to do so. After a major down pour and days of rain, the house flooded and the damage to the internal fixtures and electrics in the property was significant. The house became inhabitable. The house remained untenanted for more than six months while repairs were carried out. Not only did the Landlord lose rental income during that time, but the repair bill would have been significantly higher than fixing the drainage issues in the first place. 

What is the most interesting non-Real Estate job you have ever had, and what about that job has helped you most in your current Real Estate role? 
As a marketing comms manager for a couple large financial institutions, I quickly learned to balance stakeholder requests, regulatory requirements and ensure that our communications were still client centric. It is great working for a company like LongView, were everything we do is for the benefit of our clients.  

What is the one piece of advice you would give a new Landlord/Vendor/Tenant/Client? 
I used to think one of the most important factors in choosing a Property Manager was the management fees charged. Since working in Real Estate, I realise that the more significant cost to worry about is vacancy. A 1% or 2% difference in Property Management fees between agencies, might cost a few hundred dollars difference each year. But a vacancy over several weeks would cost significantly more (in the thousands). Choose an agency which manages lease renewals and Tenant selection really well. Or better still, choose an agency which offers a Rental Guarantee that covers vacancy as well as arrears ….. hmmm only LongView does that!