The Five Minute Interview with Jess Aspey, Underwriting Assistant, Stretton Capital
Stretton Capital are a privately funded short term lender based in Chester covering England, Scotland and Wales.
They provide bridging and development finance up to £10m for projects in the residential, commercial, industrial and agricultural sectors.
We speak to underwriting assistant, Jess Aspey:
What is the best thing about being in the bridging and development finance business?
I am going to sound like the biggest cliché ever but it’s the diverse nature of what we do. You can work on a simple £250k bridging loan for a property bought at auction one day and then be dealing with a £10m development finance loan for a new housing estate.
What keeps you focused?
Well me and my boyfriend are just buying our first house together so paying the mortgage for the foreseeable future has absolutely focused my mind!
What qualities do you look for in your employees or colleagues?
Friendliness and likeability. We spend so much time in work that I think I would go mad if I wasn’t able to laugh and get along with people that I work alongside.
Are you an optimist or a pessimist?
I would say I am a pessimist as I always find it easy to home in and focus on the negatives of a situation first rather than the positives. I am trying to see more of the positives in life but sometimes being a pessimist in this sector isn’t too bad as I can spot a bad deal from a mile away.
What did you want to be as a child?
I changed my mind more times than I can count but the one thing that stuck was an architect. I have always been fascinated by the design and structure of a house so much I used to sit for hours and design houses for my whole family. Now I enjoy getting to look through the design aspects of a project, most of the time I imagine myself living there!
What will be the greatest challenge facing the bridging and development finance industry in the coming months?
Apart from that tiresome subject that begins with a B, we are seeing lots of new entrants to the market so I think that the source of a lenders funding will become a huge issue for borrowers and brokers alike.
Who or what makes you laugh?
My dog. She’s quite a character and can tell when you are happy or sad. She will bring you a sock to cheer you up and she never fails.
Do you dread Monday mornings?
I do dread Monday mornings as I am a person who likes their sleep but the anticipation of what challenges the week ahead will bring, keeps me getting up!
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
I would give myself the confidence and encouragement to go for what I want in life. It took a lot of courage to apply for the job I have now, as I previously came from the hospitality industry meaning I knew nothing about the bridging and development finance sector but I am so glad a made the move.
With whom would you most like to have dinner?
Chris Evans (the actor, not the DJ!). I am sure he wants dinner with me too, he just doesn’t know it yet or even if I exist. But he does now. Call me Chris!