Women’s Property Networking Events Confirmed

Founded in 2017 by Emma Vigus, Managing Director of mio, the Estate Agent’s sales progression platform, Women in Residential Property (WIRP) aims to, both, encourage collaboration across the residential property industry and improve networking opportunities for women who may find traditional industry events intimidating and overtly competitive.

The network has raised over £3,000 for charity since its formation and has recently committed to exclusively support the charity, Ella’s, which provides invaluable support for women who’ve been the victims of trafficking or sexual exploitation.

WIRP will host six lunch events in 2020 with each lunch providing the opportunity to hear from high profile speakers including Dana Denis-Smith, founder of the ground-breaking history project, The First 100 Years, which charts the journey of women in law since 1919 and Kate Faulkner, Chair of the Home Buyers and Sellers Group.

WIRP lunches are informal, friendly and fun. They are specifically designed to appeal to women working at all levels across conveyancing, agency, surveying, mortgage broking, regulation, insurance and lending. WIRP is, in this respect, unique. There are no other networking events for the residential property industry that attract representatives from such a broad range of professions.

The blend of attendees is critical to one of WIRP’s founding aims, namely collaboration. Repeated appeals have been made for greater collaboration between those involved in residential property transactions. The collaboration mantra is hardly new but with the exception of the Home Buyers and Sellers Group, there’s limited evidence of it actually happening and more importantly, delivering.

As consumers we’ve come to expect collaboration even if we don’t recognise it as such. We organise family events via a WhatsApp group, most of us enjoy the seamless linkage between retailers’ websites and online payment platforms and the cars we drive are the beneficiaries of decades of collaboration in motor manufacturing. But, when we come to make the biggest purchase of our lives, we are confronted with a proverbial spider’s web.

We know that it is hard to solve this problem, but it needs resolving, for the good of, both, the consumer and all the stakeholders involved in a transaction. If the industries that we traditionally associate with residential property transactions don’t work together to find a solution, it’s increasingly likely that businesses from outside of the sector will.

The technology and the attitudes, required, to sort out property transactions already exist, and, in some cases, they’ve been well tested in other industries. There are around 1m residential property transactions in the UK per annum with buyers and sellers collectively spending approximately £15bn on those transactions. That’s over double the income Amazon generates in the UK. In short, residential transactions offer access to a very compelling potential revenue stream and it won’t take a rocket scientist to knit together the various technologies that already exist to make a transaction simpler.
Effective collaboration is a vital to resolving this challenge and to ensuring that the many businesses that have worked so hard to support consumers aren’t blindsided by a new entrant. That is why encouraging collaboration is at the heart of WIRP.

As the Founder of WIRP, Emma Vigus, is frequently asked why she chose to set up a network exclusively for women.

“Whilst I’m very conscious of the equality agenda, WIRP is not about overtly driving it. I don’t believe that women are better than men or vice versa but I do believe that men and women have unique skills and character traits which, when combined and properly managed, create a more effective ‘whole.’ I also believe that women are more open to collaboration and there are several studies that suggest that women are more likely to care for the collective which is crucial to effective collaboration. It can also mean that women are often better team players and that, in turn, makes us increasingly likely to support people to get things done. That is vital to effective networking which is about supporting people and receiving support, in return.”

To find out more about WIRP, please visit www.womeninresidentialproperty.co.uk.

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