Keep updated on Built Environment industry insights and thoughts from UCEM Principal: Ashley Wheaton.
Global learning: Q&A with Natasha Collins, our Real Estate Tutor in New York
Posted on: 1 February, 2019
UCEM’s online mode of study is a modern solution for our international student community but students aren’t the only people we engage with worldwide. We work with international professional bodies and alumni, and our tutor base ranges from those who work full-time at our Reading-based HQ to our part-time Associate Tutors who combine practice with academia.
Such is the flexibility of our operations that when Real Estate Tutor, Natasha Collins relocated to New York, she was able to continue working for UCEM and here, we catch up with her to find out how she is finding life in America so far…
– How did the opportunity to move to New York come about?
My fiancé Chris was relocated for his job. He works for Facebook in Sports Media partnerships. If you are on Facebook and watching sports for free, that’s him!
– How are you finding it?
I’ve found it a lot easier than I thought I would. Having RICS based out here has helped a lot. In the first month, RICS had a networking event which I went to and made friends with some of the lecturers at NYU [New York University].
I’ve met a few other property investors via Instagram who are showing me the ropes of investing in residential. Living in a dog-friendly apartment has also helped. There’s a dog run on the ground floor and Summer [Natasha’s Jackaraniun puppy] and I have made good friends both with the dogs and their owners. It’s a nice community in the block.
Surprisingly, one of my podcast listeners owns a podcast production studio near me (he’s a property developer) and invited me to record there. That’s also a great community of podcasters.
– From a real estate point of view, how does the industry in America compare to the UK?
I did a guest lecture at NYU on management of commercial property and that was completely translatable – only a few terms were different. Students in America follow a programme very similar to what we teach in the UK. UK commercial practitioners would be able to still practise in the US. However, residential property is very different, I’m still learning the terminology. More often than not, you’ll find me repeating back what my investor friends say, and then asking them to clarify if it’s the same as how I understand something.
– Has living in America had any impact on your UCEM teaching?
It’s allowed me to host webinars later which are friendlier times for students who have to work during the day. I like the flexibility of being able to lecture from anywhere. It allows me to experience the industry on a global level and how the markets interact, which I can then put that back into my teaching.
– Your career has also taken you to the likes of South Africa and Hong Kong, as well as other countries. Is this representative of working within real estate or is this fuelled more so by a personal interest in travel?
I like exploring new places. I have clients from the Members Club [Natasha’s NC Real Estate Members Club] all over the world including, Australia, Kenya, Sweden and Spain. Working in real estate can be whatever you make it. I find my clients through social media, which means that they don’t have to be UK-based to be investing in the UK.
It was part of the plan for the NC Real Estate Members Club. I wanted to be able to access all investors in the UK, but without being on the road the whole time. So I moved it all online, but it’s nice to have that one-to-one interaction if I’m in their country.
– Where do you see yourself going next in your career?
I love running the Members Club as it allows me to work with clients on my favourite thing – property investment strategy. I will continue working on growing that as well as lecturing with UCEM as the pair complement each other really nicely!
Natasha teaches on UCEM’s postgraduate and undergraduate property management modules. For more about Natasha and her business interests, click here.
To find out more about UCEM’s Real Estate programmes, click here.