The Five Minute Interview with Chris Timms, Head of Sales for the North, Octopus Real Estate


Chris Timms, Head of Sales for the North, at Octopus Real Estate

Octopus Real Estate, part of Octopus Group, is a leading specialist real estate lender and investor, with over £2 billion under management and a highly experienced team of over 110 professionals.

The property lending team provides bespoke, customer focused financing solutions across the UK residential, commercial and development sectors.

The team has lent more than £4 billion across over 3,000 loans, providing competitively priced financing throughout the UK and spanning the property investment lifecycle, with loans typically ranging from £100,000 to £50 million.

We speak to Head of Sales for the North, Chris Timms:

What is the best thing about being in the property finance business?

The people are what makes our business so exciting. I’m lucky to work with a great team at Octopus Real Estate and the broker network is full of great characters who make sure that no two days are the same.

What keeps you focused?

I’m naturally competitive, I love the buzz of completing a deal and ultimately making my clients happy.

I’m also aware of how important reputation is in our market so I always make sure I’m delivering on what I promise to make sure brokers come back to Octopus Real Estate time and time again.

What qualities do you look for in your employees or colleagues?

Honesty, integrity and drive. I want to work with people who are determined to succeed but not afraid to admit a mistake or ask for help – that’s the only way we will continue to improve.

Are you an optimist or pessimist?

I am definitely an optimist. I don’t see the point in thinking the worst, we should be grateful for what we have and believe that anything is possible.

What did you want to be as a child?

Kylie Minogue’s boyfriend, a professional rugby player and Head of Northern Sales for a leading specialist finance company.

I probably won’t make it professionally as rugby player but two out of three wouldn’t be bad.

What will be the greatest challenge facing the property finance industry in the coming months?

Following a somewhat uncertain year the market should look to stabilise. The challenge will be making sure we have our lending strategy set to be ahead of the curve, that we are lending against the right assets, in the right locations and at the right gearing.

I’m confident now that the industry can progress and move on.

Who or what makes you laugh?

Other than myself, I’d have to say my little boy, he never fails to make me laugh.

He can often be found pointing at dogs in the park, making a pig “oink” noise or putting on shoes 15 sizes too big and trying to climb up a slide with a toy car in one hand and Igglepiggle in the other.

Do you dread Monday mornings?

No way, we have just opened the office in Manchester which has a fantastic team, the deals are flowing in, the completions are going out and the atmosphere up there is buzzing. I love my job and my team.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

Good question – I’m so happy where I am that I’d rather look forward to what’s next and continue to build on my myself, my family and our future.

With whom would you most like to have dinner?

The Queen – I’d love to get a glimpse at the person behind the crown, I think she’s an amazing woman and I’d love to know what makes her tick.