Lovell Homes Setting Itself Apart From The Competition

Posted 5 September 2019 by Lizzie Leigh

This week we talk to Lee Sale, managing director for the North West division of Lovell Homes...

Lee Sale tells us about the Lovells’ sweet spot and how an outstanding spec on new build homes sets them apart from the competition.

You joined Lovell Homes as its regional managing director for the North West back in February, how are you enjoying it so far?

I’ve had a great seven months - the energy around the business is infectious. Our strategic plan and the goals we want to achieve are now clear for both the team and myself. My focus for the business is creating a sustainable pipeline for the next five years whilst maintaining the highest standards of customer service and delivering projects safely (which is of course a given for us but something that must remain a discussion point).

What do you think Lovell Homes does particularly well in terms of new build homes?

We understand our strengths very well. Regenerating communities and delivering much needed mixed tenure affordable family homes at pace is our sweet spot. This is where we excel in our offer to the market. We work closely with the local community to establish its needs and then incorporate that into our development plans. All Lovell homes have an outstanding specification for the price range and this sets us apart from the competition.

Your development at Oaktree Grange in Clayton-le-Woods, Lancashire, offers a selection of three-, four-, and five-bedroom new build homes; who are you finding these are appealing to the most?

Oaktree Grange (Lovell)Our specification is high and, with lots of competition, we had to ensure the quality of our show homes was first class and demonstrated the “Lovell difference”. The design of our homes is driven around family life and how every inch of living space is used. The feedback from our sales team has been very positive with visitors commenting on the flow of the rooms and the high specification. The external cladding we’ve used at Oaktree is very distinctive and the homes look and feel high quality, with grey windows and exceptional brick and stone facades.

Your scheme at Shawbrook Manor is in nearby Leyland, Lancashire and launches in October, can you tell us a bit more about it?

Shawbrook Manor is a fantastic development of family homes in the most attractive area of Leyland. The development is very well connected, with the M6 motorway located close by. The area also feels semi-rural with great views on all boundaries and the attractive Worden Park just a stone’s throw away. Our show homes and sales complex will open in October.     

Both Oaktree Grange and Shawbrook Manor offer three-bedroom houses which you feel would be great for first-time buyers and downsizers alike; can you tell us why?

Oaktree Grange (Lovell)The price range and specification of our three-bedroom homes at both developments are very competitive. They are versatile homes with spacious rooms on offer. Bedroom three can be easily changed into a study for example, while bedroom two could be a very spacious guest bedroom. They are flexible to meet the needs of a wide range of buyers, which makes them so popular.

Downsizers are in the market for an easy to maintain home and a major advantage of a new build is that there’s often no need to redecorate or do any maintenance work when moving in. The homes at both Oaktree Grange and Shawbrook Manor both include handy storage spaces and energy efficient appliances so keeping them clutter-free is very easy. It leaves downsizers with more time to enjoy their home instead of having to spend money fixing it.

Many of our first-time buyers are young couples with aspirations of eventually starting a family or relatively young families. The option of a third bedroom gives these buyers more room to grow, so there’s less need to find somewhere new a few yearsdown the line. And with the availability of the Help to Buy scheme, stepping onto the property ladder in a three-bedroom home instead of a two-bedroom one is becoming much more achievable.

Do your homes offer any incentives to help first-time buyers get on the ladder?

All our developments have Help to Buy on offer to assist first-time buyers. More specifically, this September at Oaktree Grange we are offering a £10k incentive towards any optional extras package on specific plots for completion in our financial year.

How is the local North West property market performing at the moment?

I keep in contact with lots of my housebuilding colleagues in the area and the general feel is from a sales perspective it’s business as usual. The data suggests the same and currently at Lovell we are ahead of plan from a sales perspective this year and are currently focusing on the strength of forward sales for 2020.

What’s the best advice you can give to somebody looking to buy a new build property?

Research well and visit every outlet before you buy. Buying a home is an amazing journey and should receive the same attention as choosing the location. Having a clear set of parameters is always good when there is a lot of choice. Being clear on price range and location are fundamental in buying a new build. The specification and location of the actual plot on the development will become clear depending on each individual development.     

What are some of the ways in which Lovells invests in the local areas and communities where it builds?

Generating and creating social value is a massive part of the Lovell DNA and we set out our agenda before the start of all new developments. Our focus is on how we can leave something positive and sustainable behind us once all homes are complete. This can be something physical like the great work we do with charities on buildings or community areas, people focused activities like raising money completing walks or runs with partners or more traditional routes of bringing people in the area back to work by offering upskilling courses.       

And finally, what’s the next exciting project on your radar this year?

We have many exciting projects, including opening new developments in Weston near Crewe and Thornton Cleveleys near Blackpool this year. Both these schemes shall deliver the outstanding Lovell standard specification and competitive pricing, with a range of optional extras from our Inspirations catalogue. These have been designed to give each new home buyer the ability to shape their new home in every aspect of design.      

Caroline Verity, Skipton Properties
15 June 2017
WhatHouse? speaks exclusively to Caroline Verity, creative director of Skipton Properties...Read more
Interviews with the Experts
Louise McGuckin, Story Homes
9 February 2017
Our exclusive interview this week focuses on one of northern England's most ambitious housebuilders, Story Homes, and its sales director, Louise ...Read more
Interviews with the Experts
Michaela Lancaster of Barratt Homes Manchester
17 December 2015
The Barratt Homes director speaks exclusively to WhatHouse? about Barratt's new homes for sale and the property market in and around Manchester.....Read more
Interviews with the Experts

Click here to see your activities