It’s summer. And Mike Reid is planning a family barbecue.
“Do you buy your meat from a butcher or a supermarket? he asks me. Supermarket, usually, I confess.
“It’s okay. Not everyone realises that a butcher doesn’t just sell meat but gives good advice too.
“My barbecues are famous because of my butcher.” He tells me what’s best or freshest and how to get the most from what I buy. Our relationship is worth more than the discounts I get at the supermarket.
“Don’t tell my family,” I add, quickly. Mike is explaining the difference between a firm of chartered surveyors and estate agents and a typical estate agency. “We are the only cross-sector one in Eastbourne,” he says. “And that means, like my butcher, we add valuable experience and expertise compared with many estate agents.”
Reid+Dean is the only agent in Eastbourne which offers comprehensive residential, commercial and development expertise combined. “Like a butcher that sells specialist meats?” I ventured. “Now you’re getting it,” said Mike. The proof is in the steak and kidney pudding, of course. The company has sold more hotels and guest houses than any other commercial agent in Eastbourne, and more than their fair share of High Street shops too. And to make sure that the residential side of the business continues to build in the same way as the commercial, Reid+Dean (like some in the resurgent butcher trade) is moving to a more prominent High Street location – on Memorial Roundabout in Cornfield Road. “We are the only major operation to move towards the High Street, rather than away, in many years,” said Paul Wilton, one of the senior negotiating team. “We want to make our passion for helping people to realise their property dreams – not just buying the next home – as accessible as possible. It’s been a challenging few years for everyone in property, but the things which distinguish us from other agents are the same reasons we’ve prospered. ‘It’s the right time to invest in raising our profile and taking these benefits to more people.” Reid+Dean’s involvement in the local community doesn’t stop with business. Mike is a director of Eastbourne Chamber of Commerce and a member of the Town Team, Paul is Vice Chairman of Round Table. Both are committed fund raisers, with Mike performing Bucket Master duties at this year’s Sunshine Carnival and the company sponsoring the Eastbourne Half Marathon for many years. Combined they’ve contributed thousands to local schools, societies and clubs.
“Being active in the community fits in with how we view all other traditional High Street shops,” Mike added.
“We have a responsibility to be active, to know our community and to try and help where we can, both in business and life. We all know Eastbourne has a lot going for it. We’re determined to be part of the reason people say that. Just like your excellent High Street butchers.”