In our latest edition, we’re shining the spotlight on one of our Branch Managers, Paul Johnston from Hartley Wintney.

Staff Paul JohnstonPaul joined us over 6 years ago, in the summer of 2011, originally starting out at our Fleet branch as the Assistant Manager, before moving over to Hartley Wintney to work alongside our Sales Director, Steve Tetlow.

Whilst Paul has only been with us for 6 years, he brings to the table over 25 years of experience, having worked within the industry across Hampshire, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Surrey.

So what sent Paul down the Estate Agency career path?

“I have always had a keen interest in property and architecture. My parents are members of the National Trust, so from a young age I would visit grand stately homes and historic buildings, which must have had an influence on me. I was looking to buy my first property in 1992 and saw an ad in the paper for new recruits with an interest in property, which led me to join my first agency as a trainee. I sold my first house within the first week and was hooked. Within two years I was managing my first branch in Surrey, and the rest, as they say, is history.”

IMAG0232Having worked across the region and for a variety of agencies over the years, it was the people and unique business set-up that drew Paul to Mackenzie Smith.

“Having visited two of the branches before coming to join, I felt a real energy in them. In our branches, we have some of the best and most experienced local property agents. The people I met and work with today were a real deciding factor on joining the team.  The marketing tools we are given, and the fact that we have our own in-house marketing department, is a real benefit that not many agents of our size can boast. Having worked with both corporate and independent agencies over the years, in various roles, I decided I wanted to get back and focus on doing what I enjoy most, hands on estate agency. At Mackenzie Smith I am able to build relationships with both sellers and buyers, without getting caught up in the day to day distractions that some companies force upon their employees.”

With such a diverse agency background, and the reasons Paul gives for joining Mackenzie Smith, it’s no surprise that his favourite aspect of the job is the end result, going to see a vendor on the moving day and collecting the keys before handing them to the buyer, a job well done. But when it comes to the most memorable moment in his career, well that one is a little more surprising.

“Back in the ’90s, I sold an apartment in Surrey for the then hugely popular “Jet” from Gladiators, the TV series. Whilst I only met her on a couple of occasions, as she was busy working during the sale, she was positively charming. She also had some portraits in the apartment that always got people talking, at the time she was a very recognizable personality.”

hw instaMoving from Surrey to Hampshire to sell, and subsequently Fleet to Hartley Wintney, Paul loves the village he now works in. “There is a really eclectic mix here, of both people and properties. The village has a great community spirit, one which is often absent from many other towns and villages. Hartley Wintney still has a local baker, butchers, a family run wine shop and a weekly greengrocer on Wednesdays. There are also a variety of events held throughout the year, which are always wholeheartedly supported by the community, and are very much an asset to the village. Hosted on the village green and the quintessentially English market High Street, there are festivals, an apple day, a Christmas market and much more.”

When Paul isn’t selling homes or getting involved with the local community, he has a wide variety of hobbies and interests to keep him busy; from swimming, biking and badminton, to watching movies and spending quality time with his family.

If you’d like to speak to Paul and our team at Hartley Wintney about selling your home, or would like any information regarding our services, please contact the Hartley Wintney branch on (01252) 844015 or e-mail