Henry Charles Estates celebrate their 18th anniversary as one of the most experienced brands of the real estate industry in North Cyprus. Kıbrıs Emlak Merkezi interviewed the Director of the company, Arzu Aygın on that occasion to find out secrets of their success and the conjuncture of the TRNC real estate industry.
Interview with Henry Charles Estates Director Arzu Aygın on their 18th Anniversary
When you have a look at the opening and closing statistics of companies in Northern Cyprus the movement in the real estate industry is immediately apparent. During periods of increased demand of buyers many people enter the sector just to close down the business without a second thought when sales start to slow down. As a result, the profit earned remains in their pockets, whereas their clients and the industry face the unpleasant consequences. Unfortunately, this cycle repeats itself for many years now.
Dedicated companies in the sector however manage to overcome even dire periods with success. One of those stable companies in the TRNC is Henry Charles Estates proving their experience and success over years by setting an example for others.
Henry Charles Estates is celebrating its 18th anniversary at the dynamic real estate industry this year.
The company is also one of the most popular brands of Turkish, English and Russian contents of Kıbrıs Emlak Merkezi, the first and only real estate news and listing web portal of North Cyprus. They are searched, read and followed by visitors logging in all over the world.
We talked about the past, present and the expectations of the real estate market with Arzu Aygın, Director of Henry Charles Estates.
“We Do the Same Business, The Same Way at The Same Office”
Congratulations on the 18th anniversary of Henry Charles Estates. What have you done in those 18 years?
Thank you very much. They were 18 years of success. We do the same business in the same way at the same office. I believe that being dependable is one of the indicators of our success.
Naturally there have been ups and downs of the market in those 18 years. Some years we experienced a boom in sales whereas some years obviously were rather stagnant.
The reason why we could remain in the real estate industry for so long over the years is perhaps that we are honest and lead our clients in the right direction. I believe that the preference of people choosing to work with us is an indication of that.
“We Are Not One of Those Real Estate Agencies Living on Borrowed Time”
Looking back to those 18 years, many real estate agencies have started business and many have closed their doors. It is an important detail that you are doing the same business in the same way… What is the secret of your success?
The secret of consistent success is to work hard. To be honest, like in any kind of business. We are a family business. Whist working together with my husband Ediz Aygın, I started to train my daughter for the business too. Another factor is trust. Following up and working never fails in our office. All of that combined created trust in our company over the span of 18 years. This really empowers us.
Our coworkers are with us for many years. They identify with the brand. We are like a big family.
We invest in promotional tools like digital marketing as well as international real estate fairs. People are aware that we are not one of those real estate agencies on borrowed time. They entrust their properties and leave their house keys with us because they trust us. We have a straight standing and never wronged anyone. This is the secret of consistency. Customers buying from us always recommend us to their contacts and they also prefer to work with us. We do not only sell their property. We are there to assist with every procedure. If requested, we rent and manage their property on behalf of them. We have an employee specialized in this work. Our services do not stop with the sale; we are involved in after sales as well.
“Everyone Should Stick to Their Own Profession”
A lot of people have changed course to become real estate agents because of relatively high profit margins in previous years. At that time experienced real estate agents commented that everyone should stick to their own business. The same people who became real estate agents are switching their business again these days. What would be your comment?
I always said and I’m still saying that everyone should sick to their job they’re specialized in. One person can only be good in two things at the same time. You have to delegate the rest to someone or rather not delegate, because at the end of the day you will have to control it. Time is important for everyone. If you have enough time to do it all, go ahead. The question is do you really have that much time at your disposal to master it all? When you start spending more time in favour of other endeavors, would you really show enough devotion to real estate? This is debatable.
We are a real estate agency. This is what we focus on. It would be difficult for us to be busy with other work when we are committed to lead our clients in the right direction and tracking the real estate market. I think this gives you an insight.
We are not involved in short term rentals either because we believe it takes the focus away from our actual work. I see that people open a shop with a table and two chairs in it to do whatever they please. Their level of success is questionable. I don’t think so. Their lack of so many things starting with integrity leads to a growing number of wronged customers.
“All Title Deeds Carry the Stamp of the TRNC”
The wrong doing you mentioned makes the investor regret their decision to invest and keeps the prospective investor away. What should investors watch out for when investing in North Cyprus?
The most crucial part of buying a property is the ability to sell promptly. This is valid for investments all over the world. If you cannot liquidate your investment immediately when necessary, it’s not an investment. The right location and right price are significant factors.
For instance, different types of title deeds provoke a crisis. In fact, there is only one type of legal title deed and that one bears the stamp of the TRNC. Stakeholders of the sector turn this into an issue to profit from it and the buyer hesitates. The differentiation of title deed types also creates various pricing levels where sellers profit from.
Obviously correcting this is beyond our capacity. I just wish that it could be regulated so the confusion would end.
“Sales are Closed with Offers”
How is the market now? On one hand there are the implications of the pandemic and on the other hand there is the rapid devaluation of the TL? How would you read this?
People were hesitant to buy for a long period of time and there is also a shortage of cash. With the devaluation of the TL against hard currencies most of the buyer come up with an offer for the property. The seller has a price tag, the buyer puts in an offer, if they can meet at a balance the sale goes through, or not.
Talking about online sales… I’ not really convinced about the alleged volume of sales stated. There is also a new instrument for payment on the market in the form of crypto currencies. The real estate industry has adopted quickly to this novelty.
We have seen a variety of situations at the market during our 18 years of business like the aftermath of coups, the aftermath of the Annan Plan. There were times when we predominantly dealt with British customers. Then the Russian came, followed by Turkish clients.
Nowadays the Arab market is the most dynamic.
Despite difficulties it is a fact that the we are in an upwards curve of the market.
“Kıbrıs Emlak Merkezi Has Been Our Voice”
Henry Charles has been one of the longstanding members at the first and only news and listings portal in North Cyprus, Kıbrıs Emlak Merkezi. We had a close cooperation especially during the lockdown period of the pandemic. What are your thoughts about the portal?
Kıbrıs Emlak Merkezi once again proved their consistency and willingness of hard work to us during that period. You have worked with devotion and success even when everyone was locked down in their homes. Kıbrıs Emlak Merkezi has been and continues to be our voice and strength at all times.
I particularly appreciate your permanence. We worked together for a long time and I saw so many web portals in the same sector getting online, being fantasists with the result of shutting down soon. This is what I admire about Kıbrıs Emlak Merkezi in this fragile sector, durability and devotion to their work. No matter whether the market is good or bad, whether there is a pandemic or not, our offices open or locked down due to Covid-19, Kıbrıs Emlak Merkezi was there for us, worked hard and achieved results. It’s a pleasure working with you.
KIBRIS EMLAK MERKEZİ
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