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Purplebricks lettings director quits to go to rival hybrid franchise firm

A lettings guru who worked at Purplebricks for five years in a string of key roles has quit the company to join a rival online operation.

Howard Russell played a key role in establishing Purplebricks’ lettings department. 

His roles included Property Manager, Lettings Manager, Head of Lettings Training and Development and finally, Lettings Operations Director.


Now he has joined Accommodation.co.uk to look after its network of Local Lettings Consultants.

He is also charged with “helping to develop systems and processes that will enable the company to grow and scale” according to a statement from Accommodation. 

“I am excited to join a truly hybrid letting agent which combines the very best technology and people. Accommodation.co.uk customers will benefit from an unrivaled digital journey and our Local Lettings Consultants will have the very best support allowing them to build successful businesses” he says.

Aaron Short, a co-founder of Accommodation says: “We’re so pleased to welcome Howard to the family. His industry knowledge and experience is unrivalled, so it’s an honour to have him on board.

“This is a real testament to our service and the work we’re doing in the lettings industry. Our aim is to become the UK’s largest and most loved lettings agency, and with Howard’s input, I’m positive that this will become a reality.”

This is not the first former Purplebricks lettings expert to join the start up Accommodation.

Last month we reported that Michael Booth, Purplebricks’ former academy director and Julie Findlater, the first Purplebricks lettings territory owners in Scotland, had been recruited. 

Booth is helping recruit and Local Lettings Consultants, and Findlater operates as a property manager.

Accommodation operates in Manchester, Leeds, Telford, Swansea, Lincoln and Stockport.

The company says it’s presenting “a first of its kind franchise offering” and a custom-built platform promising to ”streamline and automate administrative tasks” for landlords and tenants. 

It says early bird franchisees will benefit from no startup fee for a limited time. 

An introductory price of £1,000 will be levied before increasing in early 2020.  

The firm says its LLCs will be able to run their business “without the need for expensive high street offices, equipment and software” but with a digital platform and head office support from its Manchester HQ within the pricing structure.

Through the platform, tenants can find properties and arrange a viewing, make an offer on a property, complete the referencing, including wage verification and a credit check - all in 10 minutes, pledges the firm. 

Successful tenants will be able to sign the tenancy agreement and make a deposit payment. After move in, tenants can access a dashboard where they can report maintenance problems and communicate with their landlord.

Landlords can opt for full property management or a let only option.


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