Guildford-based housebuilder Barratt Southern Counties has appointed a new Head of Sales and Marketing, who has taken over responsibility for sites across the Home Counties including Berkshire, Surrey and Sussex. Alex Dowling returned to the division this month (October 2023), where he began his career as a Sales Consultant more than 15 years ago.
Alex will be responsible for leading the sales function and implementing marketing strategies across the division. Alongside this, Alex will oversee pilot schemes aimed at boosting first time buyer homeownership, with the newly-launched Rent then Buy programme available across selected developments.
“It is a difficult market at the moment, and I would say the first truly challenging market I have experienced in the industry, given the changes over the last 18 months in particular,” says Alex. “Yet this isn’t a time to shy away, and there is a unique opportunity here to spearhead homeownership for first time buyers through our pilot Rent then Buy scheme. I’m passionate about helping buyers on every rung of the ladder to achieve their homebuying goals.”
Alex has more than 20 years’ experience in the new homes industry, initially beginning his career as a Sales Consultant in London before securing his first role at Barratt Southern Counties. After five years’ as a Sales Consultant for the division, Alex progressed to a Project Sales Manager, followed by Part Exchange Manager and then Head of Customer Service.
Alex comments: “I managed to gain experience in a variety of roles early on in my career, which helped me gain a deeper understanding of the customer journey. I was involved in the creation and execution of numerous processes that are still in practice today, benefitting our customers and ensuring we maintain our excellent standards for buyers.”
In 2015, Alex moved to FABRICA by A2 Dominion for a year on a project-basis, but was drawn back to Barratt in 2016 where he joined the Southampton division as a Sales Manager. “I enjoyed working in London for a year, but when I was offered the opportunity to return to Barratt, it was an easy decision,” says Alex. “As a PLC housebuilder, there are endless opportunities for progression, including transferring between divisions for personal development.”
Looking for the next step in his career in 2020, a Senior Sales Manager position arose within Southampton division. Here, Alex was responsible for selling landmark schemes including Harbour Place, New Quarter and Heritage Quarter.
Alex comments: “Progressing to Senior Sales Manager, particularly in the height of the post-lockdown property bubble, presented a new challenge and it was an exciting time to be selling new homes. We were extremely busy, and I enjoyed working in a new area.”
When the position of Head of Sales and Marketing became available at Southern Counties division, this was the natural next step for Alex following his wealth of experience over the years. “Barratt is an excellent company to work for and champions promotion from within if you are willing to work hard. It feels like a full-circle moment to be back in the Guildford office, leading a 29-strong sales and marketing team.”
Alex adds: “The property market is never straightforward, and whilst it is undeniably a challenging time, I am confident that we are a resilient division. Our land team is strategic in its investments, and as a result we have a number of new developments recently launched or due to launch over the next 12 months that are in desirable patches across Berkshire, Surrey and Sussex. Cost-of-living remains top of the agenda for buyers, who are more conscious than ever before on factors such as sustainability, energy efficiency and connectivity.”
Barratt Southern Counties has a number of new developments planned to launch in the coming months, including 199 homes at The Poppies in Aylesford, and nearly 400 homes in Westham, including at Brookwood Meadows. In addition, the housebuilder recently launched its Finchwood Park development in Finchampstead, with an initial 100 homes delivered in the first phase.
All new developments have been planned in preparation for Future Home Standards with enhanced energy efficiency measures including combi boilers with integrated flue gas heat recovery, waste water heat recovery system, photovoltaic panels, decentralised mechanical extract ventilation and electric vehicle charging points.
To find out more about the enhanced energy efficiency measures visit www.barratthomes.co.uk/efficiency-built-in/features-and-benefits.
For further details about Barratt Southern Counties visit www.barratthomes.co.uk or call 0333 355 8498.
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