There have been significant developments at Crayson in the last year as this highly focused leading boutique operation, based in Notting Hill, has expanded into not just sourcing and selling ‘prime’ and ‘super-prime’ property across central London but has also branched out into serving the needs of HNWs and asset managers who regard London property as a blue-chip ‘investable asset class’.
With new hirings and a reputation for being one of the most ‘hands-on’, smartest and most trusted niche operators in the London property business, Crayson also works closely with property funds and a leading re-location agency. He is now starting up his own specialist investment vehicle with a unique model that will allow HNWs and funds to invest in new build luxury flats as ‘buy to let’ for investment purposes. Crayson brings his former City experience by eliminating the ‘disconnect’ that he feels often exists when City people look at property investment opportunities.
‘Crayson is a research based business’ says Crayson (maybe say ‘Nick’ – too much Crayson in sentence). ‘The City is so often behind the curve when they analyse ‘desk top’ property investment in central London. Because we are very at the coal-face we are more on the curve – we can be a very useful resource and service for family offices and other such offices – when it comes to providing the most up-to-date information for their clients – when it comes to property matters. Nick is also very much the person that HNWs will deal with personally – he takes calls at hours that you would not believe and won’t delegate down to a junior.
Crayson also specialises in the discrete selling of off-market’ properties through his own private network of clients (he is an old Etonian with connections to top hedgies, art dealers and bankers) that has been built up after years of being one of the leading independent players in London super prime space. ‘My team are not sales people – we are presenters. Our clients are sophisticated and can make up their own mind. They don’t need to be told it’s a “good buy”.
We do not have ‘sales-orientated’ language in our modus operandi – much terminology is banned at Crayson – even property descriptions have to be accurate – if the condition is shoddy – it will say that it is shoddy! ‘We invest in the highest quality marketing and collateral and we create an optimum marketing platform for our clients to the right niche market. We don’t always make decisions that benefit Crayson. The client always come before Crayson. We are entirely ethical – fair and reasonable – and transparent it’s ‘if the house is the picture, then we are your frame’.
The Crayson raison d’être is to provide a genuinely authentic service that automatically resonates with everyone who comes into contact.
In addition to running Crayson as a leading boutique operation in Notting Hill, Nick also works as a property consultant to a growing number of fund managers Ultra High Net Worth individuals and their family advisors. In this guise, Crayson is building discretionary property portfolios as well as developing houses and apartment blocks, with a focus on new build luxury apartments in central London.
Crayson act on a ‘highly discreet’ basis on behalf of clients who do not want to be associated with a large corporate or property chain.
Due to the bespoke service offered by Nick and his partners, there is no ‘shared’ office computer network where the information can be accessed by other people in other offices or countries. ‘We pride ourselves on being run like a branch of the intelligence service’ says Nick. ‘No information ever appears in the press. Integrity is central to our ethos’.
Whilst the word bespoke is much used, in the case of Crayson it really a case of ‘small is both beautiful and effective’ with Nick available at all hours a day. “Our service involves me – and sometimes my dachshund – being able to drive over to evaluate a property opportunity at any time. As a trained banker, with years of City experience, I am used to doing a much higher level of due diligence than you will find in other property firms. Living in Holland Park himself, he knows every garden square of London’s super-prime areas like a big hunter operating in the pre-war Kenyan outback.
One of the areas that Crayson is currently leading the competition is by thinking like an investment banker and realising the opportunities that exist for merging his property skills and experience with the needs of Blue-Chip companies (around the world) that require flats in London for managers and senior executives. Due to his close relationship with property developers, he can offer HNWs investment opportunities that they will not hear about from other agencies until they read about them in the Home pages of the Evening Standard when it is too late.