Belfast Telegraph

Special Agent: Real life isn’t like property shows

Weekly focus on who's who in our local estate agents

Name Gillian McGimpsey

Age 51

Live in Ballyholme, Bangor. Divorced with three children, Jamie (27), Hannah (23) and Jack (17)

Who you work for John Minnis Estate Agent

What brought you into the business?

The agent who was selling my house during my divorce called in for a cup of coffee. By the following day I had an interview and a job offer.

Who has inspired you in the property world?

No one person in particular, however, my current work colleagues are a great team and we inspire each other.

What do you have sitting on your desk?

My desk is usually covered in paperwork, empty coffee cups and bottles of water.

Downtime is?

Walking my Assisi rescue dog Lucy on Ballyholme Beach followed by some serious gardening.

Do you do lunch?

I try to do lunch as much as I can. It doesn’t look good to be eating at reception.

What qualifications do you think are essential for estate agency?

Being able to deal with people in a friendly, courteous and informative manner, and a sense of humour helps.

What did you want to be when you were a child?

I wanted to be a veterinary nurse, but ended up training as a children’s nurse instead.

If you could give it all up tomorrow, where in the world would you move to, and what would you do?

I would move to the country, rescue dogs, keep chickens and grow things.

Any unfulfilled ambitions?

Apart from never having dated George Clooney, life is too short to be unfulfilled.

What is the most common misconception people have about estate agents?

That we are untrustworthy ‘telephone jockeys’, which is simply not true. We work very hard for our clients and try to guide them through the buying and selling process to the best of our abilities.

Your top tip for house-hunters is:

Try to ignore all the property programmes on television, real life just isn’t like that.

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