After a decade spent working for some of North West London’s top agencies, and a stint working in Dubai, Varun launched his business on the Nested platform in March 2022 — setting up shop in the glamorous London borough of Hampstead.
As he settles into Area Partner life, we caught up with Varun on how he went from aspiring actor to estate agent — and what he loves about his newfound autonomy as a business owner.
I’d been working in hospitality for about 10 years. When I got to the age of 30, I decided it was time for a change. I looked at the transferable skills I’d picked up in hospitality: When you work in bars and clubs you’re dealing with people from all walks of life. I was talking to some people one day who suggested a natural next step for me could either be recruitment or property, because both of those roles are very people-focused.
My friend at the time worked for Foxtons, so suggested I come to the open day. It was really enjoyable, so they offered me a role. After 3 months, I was approached by an independent estate agency for another job. Since then, I’ve worked for various independents in North West London.
What I love about the industry is that it’s so much more than being a salesperson; it’s about building relationships with people. You’ve really got to get people to trust you, and guide people to help them find what they want. There’s always different challenges and ups and downs. You can have a tough few weeks or months, and then you can be on a real winning streak.
I’d been in touch with Nested since they first launched, about 5 years ago. I thought the company and the mission sounded fantastic — but I was a bit too junior to join the team at the time. More recently, I saw Nested had launched the new area partner model. After finding out more about the opportunity, I thought it sounded fantastic. The timing was also perfect.
“When I spoke to Nested, I was really impressed by how much support was offered. It really is a collaboration with Nested; we’re not just using the Nested name, we’re using all their tools, services and resources too.”
I hadn’t thought much about going self-employed. I knew the broker model was growing in the UK, so it was on my radar. After covid, I realised that my free time — and how I spent my time — was super important to me, so I was already after more flexibility in my career. When I spoke to Nested, I was really impressed by how much support was offered. It really is a collaboration with Nested; we’re not just using the Nested name, we’re using all their tools, services and resources too.
From leaving my previous company to coming on board with Nested, it was all very quick — so I’m still adjusting to everything at the moment. I’m looking at things in 6 month stages, and setting specific targets rather than being entirely money-driven. For example, in 6 months I want to have 15 properties listed, and then another 6 months later increase that to 30, and so on. But I’m mostly learning as I go!
“We do everything a traditional agent does, plus all this amazing stuff on top.””
The tech is my number one USP when I pitch. People are always really blown away by it. It’s a massive distinction from the traditional agents. Especially in London, the estate agent market is so saturated — you’ve got to have that differentiator, and being able to show people the technology has worked so successfully. The app, the communication, how we use the data and the statistics — that’s what I lead with when meeting new clients, and it really lands. We do everything a traditional agent does, plus all this amazing stuff on top.
I’m pretty new to Nested myself, but what I’d definitely say is to give yourself time. Don’t judge yourself day by day or week by week, because it’s so up and down. Allow yourself to settle in, and make sure you’re in a financial position to have that time. Be persistent, trust yourself, and don’t beat yourself up.
Also, use the team around you! The tech team, the marketing guys — everyone’s on hand to support, and they’re amazing. The other area partners on Slack are also always on-hand to chat. It doesn’t feel like I’m self-employed sometimes to be honest! So know that you’ve got that team around you, and lean on them when you need to.
Book an introductory call