Steve Latham, property investor and letting specialist, Liverpool
Steve Latham is a property professional based in Liverpool. He has been working in the area since 1995, starting his career as a property renovator before setting up his own investment business 10 years ago. As well as his property investment business, Steve is the managing director of the Liverpool-based lettings agency, Concentric Lettings. Steve’s business model involves investing in properties, before using the other arms of his business to renovate and let them out.
Steve explains: “I’d been working in the property business all over Liverpool for a number years, which allowed me to get a good insight on the market what worked in terms of development. I bought my first investment property in 2003 with a business plan to renovate the properties to a high standard before letting them out long-term.”
For Steve’s business to work he required commercial finance for the purchase and renovation of properties, but high street banks could not offer the funding that he was looking for. At that point Steve was introduced to his local NACFB broker, Mark Davis at Omega Commercial Solutions, who helped him secure the funding needed to fulfil his ambitious plans.
Steve recalls: “I’d had my eyes on some hot properties that I knew would work and matched my business model perfectly. When I approached the high street bank for finance I felt like it was just a case of tapping my details into a computer and hoping for the best. Unfortunately the banks couldn’t help – which left me bitterly disappointed.
“I was given a lifeline when I was introduced to my local broker. Omega looked at the business as a whole and understood how I could make it work. Within a matter days Mark from Omega helped find the right type of loan for me. To say that I felt a huge sense of relief is an understatement. The team at Omega understood what I was trying to achieve, and 10 years down the line we are still working together. I can safely say that without them my business would not have expanded to what is today.”
Steve’s portfolio now ranges from houses of multiple occupancy (HMOs) for Local Housing Authority tenants, to former convent which he is converting into a 21-bed HMO. He employs 9 members of staff across his businesses and is regularly profiled as one of Liverpool’s biggest movers and shakers in the property industry.
Marcus Grimshaw, Chairman of NACFB said:
“Many SMEs have the perfect ingredients for a successful business, but feel helpless in accessing the right type of finance to make it work. The first port of call for business seeking finance is almost always the high street bank – completely unaware that there are more than 100 lenders out there. An independent broker has the expertise to make the match between a credit-worthy businesses and the right lender for their needs.”
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