Daniel - Land Director

CALA Homes (SHC) Ltd

What does your department do?

The land and planning department is responsible for sourcing, bidding for, contracting and purchasing residential development land. This is done from either self sourcing or via Land agent introductions. The department are responsible for coordinating a board pack which will highlight all the associated risks with the purchase as well as the potential profits. 

At various stages of the sites inception and purchase the department are responsible for achieving Main Board approvals to contract and purchase the land. Delivering planning permission on sites we control is also a key part of the department function. 

Once the site is purchased with a planning permission in place the department supply a package of information to the production departments ahead of a start on site at which point houses can start to be built.  

What do you do on a day-to-day basis?

On a day to day basis the Land Director is responsible for managing the Land and Planning teams ensuring land buying targets are met and key and milestone dates are achieved inline with the board approvals. The Land Director would also be involved with monitoring legal positions on contracts as well as approving planning application submissions. The Land director is also responsible for maintaining key contacts across the industry and networking and corporate entertainment is a regular occurrence. 

What do you like about what you do?

I like the fact the work is varied. No two sites are the same and each new development brings a whole host of new challenges and opportunities.  I like the satisfaction that comes with being the selected developer on the purchase of a site we have been chasing and the satisfaction of achieving a planning permission, especially if it has been a difficult project. It is also a nice moment to see a happy family move into a house that has been completed on land we have purchased and developed. 

Why did you choose this career?

Before university I developed an interest in the built environment and made the decision that all business required either land or property, therefore there would be plenty of property related employment opportunity across a broad spectrum of industries. I therefore focused upon the property industry and pursued a degree in Planning and Development.  

What qualifications did you need to get this job?

I studied Property Planning and Development at university. Although I did not need this degree specifically it did help me to understand the way the industry operated in the early years of my career. To be a successful individual in the property industry you need to be outgoing, enthusiastic and personable. So much of the industry is build around relationships and making and maintaining contacts is vital. 

Is there any particular advice you would give to someone looking for a career in your area of work?

GO FOR IT! If you’re not doing a property degree, get some good industry relevant work experience on your CV during university summer holidays, this will help you work out which of the many areas of the business you have an interest in as well as bolstering your CV. One of my key sayings is “if you don’t ask you don’t get” so don’t be shy in approaching companies that interest you, if you don’t hear back from them it’s their loss!