Avant Homes – A phoenix from the ashes about to soar


Get To Know Series – UK Developers

In this series, we showcase many of the UK Developers work with. The UK market is full of quality developers with proven track records and who are working hard to solve the housing crisis, despite the hinders placed by Government at every level.

Exceptional quality in exceptional locations

Avant Homes aspires to be the UK’s largest housebuilder, as it once was in another life. With the backing of three hedge funds, a go-to management, and a new line of financing recently agreed. It has every possibility of doing so. In the meantime, investors who buy properties from Avant Homes will benefit from innovative design, and high-level specification all included within the price.

One of the largest privately-owned property developers in the UK

Avant was once the UK’s largest housebuilder when it was an amalgamation of 15 housebuilders collectively known as Gladedale. However, the company had to be rescued when it nearly collapsed under the weight of £1 billion of debt in the recession following the Global Financial Crisis. The company’s saviour, Lloyds Bank, sold Avant to a consortium of three hedge funds – Alchemy Special Opportunities Fund, Angelo, Gordon & Co., and Avenue Capital Group.

It has been slimmed down by CEO Colin Lewis and focuses on building homes in Scotland and the North of England down to Bletchley, Milton Keynes. With 600 employees, the group operates via a number of regional subsidiaries. The major of these are Avant Homes Scotland, Avant Homes North East, Avant Homes Midlands, and Avant Homes Yorkshire.

Avant – paying attention to quality and the local area

Avant’s mission is to be ‘good, better, different’. This is personified in the homes it builds, and how it builds them. The company doesn’t simply want to be the biggest at what it does, and it seeks to be the best. It benchmarks its product against that of other property developers, compares approach, and aims to build homes that are ‘good, better, different’.

With the focus on quality, attention to detail, and the local area. They seek to work with and build communities while maintaining excellence in its core responsibilities: employees, investors, customers, clients, stakeholders, and community issues. To achieve all of this, Avant’s management:

  • Drives the delivery of cost-effective homes designed for the needs of their customers. Built to the highest standards and future-proofed for residential needs
  • Emphasizes on site safety, use of natural resources, and environmental impact
  • Builds with specifications for sustainable lifestyles (including recycling, reduced waste, and using fewer resources)

High-level specifications creating unique homes

Avant’s specification list is off the charts. Off-plan investors have the choice of more than a dozen designer kitchens, with features that include soft close drawers, integrated appliances, and choice of colour schemes.

In the bathroom, buyers have a choice of panelling, hand-hair wash and slim-profile bath fillers, full-height tiling, digitally controlled thermostatic shower, and a floating vanity unit in a range of colours.

Sliding door wardrobes, en suite, and BT and television sockets to the bedrooms complete the individualisation options.

All of this is included as standard in an Avant Homes property (including carpets).

In February 2017, Avant Homes became the UK’s first national property developer to partner with British Gas and install the Hive Active Heating technology in every home it builds, giving homeowners and tenants the ability to control their gas and energy usage better and reduce costs.

Recognition beginning to flow

Avant’s design, build quality, and internal and external specifications have helped it win several industry awards, marking it out as a property developer delivering to the needs of its customers and local communities. Its most recent awards include:

  • The new housing development in the village of Winchburgh has been named the best in Scotland.
  • The developer’s team at Richmond Gate were presented the Property Team of the Year Award at the Herald Property Awards for Scotland in September 2016.
  • Also at the Herald Property Awards for Scotland, Avant Homes’ Pendlebury house type won the Best Family Home Award.
  • At this year’s Scottish Home Awards, Avant Homes won the House of the Year Award.

Where can you invest in an Avant Homes property?

Avant Homes completed more than 1,600 homes last year and planned to increase this to 2,000 homes per year within five years. It is currently developing dozens of sites, with more expected, providing homes ranging from one-bedroom apartments to five-bedroom family homes. Two of Avant Homes’ developments are:

Life at Bletchley

Located in the heart of Buckinghamshire and surrounded by stunning countryside, Life at Bletchley is a collection of homes from one and two-bedroom apartments through to four-bedroom homes. This development lies within a walk of the local railway station. From where London is less than 50 minutes by train: ideal for professionals working in the capital. Bletchley is close to the A5 and M1, providing excellent transport links to the rest of the country.

Local schools in the area include Knowles Nursery, St Thomas Aquinas Catholic Primary, White Spire School, and The Milton Keynes Academy. Local shops include a Tesco Express. There is a range of dining options locally, as well as a cinema, a hospital, and, of course, the amazing countryside to relax. Nearby Milton Keynes, which is in the running to be named the European Capital of Culture 2023. It provides further leisure and shopping facilities.

Johnsons Wharf, Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent

In the heart of Stoke-on-Trent, Johnsons Wharf is part of the City Waterside regeneration programme. The site is surrounded by historically preserved buildings and puts residents close to the action of the bustling city centre. As such it is ideally located for local shops, leisure facilities, bars, restaurants and theatres.

And yet, residents also benefit from the peace of waterside living.

The development also benefits from Stoke’s fantastic transport links. With easy commutes to Stafford and Macclesfield, and good road and rail links to Birmingham, Manchester and Liverpool. Families benefit from proximity to local primary and secondary schools and further education.

Properties available here range from two-bedroom apartments to four-bedroom homes. All of which benefit from the quality of Avant Homes build specification.

Avant Homes provides exceptional quality in its build and quality, and offers exceptional locations for investment, too.

Live with passion,

Brett Alegre-Wood

About the Author

Brett has over 20 years experience in all facets of property, he owns various companies centred around property and is the driving force behind the education and training at Castlereach. His companies have sold over £850 million in UK and London property and he manages over 1200 properties through his estate agency chain. Today he shares his time between UK, Australia and Singapore. He is married to Arlene and together they have 4 kids. Brett holds both the Level 3 Property Mark Qualifications for Property Sales and Property Lettings and Management.