David Price, 32, has built up a £19m portfolio since buying his first terraced house eight years ago using a hard-earned £6,000 savings pot to get him on the ladder.
Now he’s turned to his 13,000-follow-strong Instagram account to generate interest and excitement over his latest development in Cottam, and says the online approach has “completely changed the game”.
The former Bishop Rawstorne and Runshaw College student has managed to sell all units on his Edgewater Oaks development, at a time when the property sector in particular, was stuck in limbo due to the global pandemic.
The development, on the banks of the Lancaster Canal, has been built by by his company 10ACIA, and features five-bedroom detached homes costing around £850,000.
David said using his own personal account to sell was "completely serendipitous" and all started because he loved making the Instagram stories about what he was doing.
His approach is to use the Instagram Stories feature to upload regular video content, detailing all the aspects of the building process and "design obsession".
Now he claims his Rightmove statistics of people clicking through from Instagram are 800 per cent higher than other properties in the area.
He said: "It’s only a small development in Preston, but it’s getting a great deal of attention. People in Nottingham, London, Birmingham and Manchester know about this site – that would not ordinarily be the case.
“I post Instagram Stories every few days, covering topics such as where the development process is up to and how we source our materials.
“That can even involve travelling to factories in Spain to see first-hand how the kitchens are produced and the quality control they’ve got in place.
“We go to quarries to see how they are extracting the stonework that will be used.
“You become obsessed with the details and I think telling that story has engaged people because, whether it’s 18 year olds wanting to start a business through to retired couples looking to invest, people want to understand how properties are put together.”
David harboured a desire from an early age to get into the property business, although his CV also includes flying helicopters and working as a professional pianist.
By playing weekly gigs playing at bars and weddings, he saved up his earnings and in 2012, with £6,000 he started his developing career with a terraced house in Preston.
David believes his passion and personal touch are also helping drive interest and sales.
He said: “I do the viewings myself because I’m on site all day.
“I have a passion for the product and buyers are in a unique position to be able to contact the managing director of a multi-million pound company directly through Instagram.
“People generally think property developers are blokes in their mid 50s who are only in it for the money and don’t care about the product.
“I want to change that perception.”
On the local housing market, he is particularly confident.
He said: "There’s a significant amount of investment going into Preston, with large developers and small buy-to-let landlords across the board pumping serious money in the the city.
"Coupled with Preston’s share of the City Deal, and massive investment in road infrastructure, it offers a slice of the country lifestyle but with the local amenities of a city. Also, the Lakes and Manchester are so easy to get to.
"The value for money that buyers get has brought people to specifically relocate to Preston, from the likes of Kent and London. Our other buyers are from neighbouring towns."
Follow David on @davyprice