A True Lifestyle Business

Hi John here,

Alison & Derek Wedding Photography (16 of 329)Today I talk to serial entrepreneur Derek Armson about a new lifestyle business he has added to his growing portfolio.

Working In The City

Just to give you a bit of background, Derek spent 25 years recruiting high level technicians for the Investment Banks in the City of London before deciding to change direction.

What happened I asked him?

“I just got fed up with the people in the City. They were far too full of themselves and I knew long before it happened something nasty was going to hit. I was sitting with a derivatives project manager who todl me his bank had made nearly £1 billion on derviatives in just one quarter. He told me if they had made that much that someone must have been holding the other very rotten end of the stick. It was a house of cards and simply had to fail. It was in that instant I decided to get out”.

That was brave wasn’t it?

Brave Or Stupid?

“Stupid more like”, he laughs at the memory. “I decided I wanted something where I stood or fell by my own efforts and decided on Digital Marketing. In all honesty I was hopeless at it!”

Tell me more I am intrigued.

“It was just so different to me. I was a salesman at heart and here I was trying to learn all sorts of weird and wonderful technical stuff trying to build a residual income online. It was quite stressful because I was failing and the money was running out”.

But you got there in the end.

“I did, but if you’d asked me when i satrted if I thought it would have taken as long would I have done it? the answer would probably have been a resounding “no”, but now I am here I have to say I do enjoy it”.

What amde you suceed in the end?

“Dogged determination and a seachange in my thought processes. I realised that online you are nothing without traffic, be that paid or organic traffic. So I decided free traffic was best, so i voraciously learned everything I could about SEO. I now have a rapidly growing search engine optimsation business which you can find at Authority Digital“.

But, we’re not here to talk about that are we?

“No, we’re not”, he smiles.

Lifestyle Sunshine Apartment Rentals

Tell me about your lifestyle business.

“Well, Alison and I love our time in the sun and we found a little place on the Costa Del Sol called Nerja. It’s absolutely beautiful. It does have some toruism in the main summer months, but it is predominantly Spanish tourism and it retains a unique Spanish feel. We found we kept going back, so we decided to look for a place there”.

When was that?

“We started going about 6 years ago and started to look for a property seriously in September 2014. We finally settled on an apartment in the Las Palmeras development and at the end of March 2015 we travelled to Nerja to take possession of our apartment. It was one we’d viewed back in the previous September. We knew it was run a tad run down, but when we saw it empty, we realsied the size of the task in front of us. There was no way we could get any of our investment back by renting out because it was too old and shabby”.

So, what did you do?

Luxury Refurbishment

“Oh dear, we spent a shed load of money doing it up to luxury standards. However, the winner was that by doing that we increased the aparment for rent in Nerja weekly rate from about E500/week to over E800/week. Obviously we wanted to use the apartment ourselves and we have made a significant investment in it, but…the figures worked out like this. Our rental agents reckoned we could get 46 weeks per annum rented out, which really surprised us. They went on to say that would net us E20,000 each year. So, we decided that if we rented for half the year that could pay for us to stay the other half pretty much”.

So, it’s not really a business then~?

“I guess not as such. But it’s leveraging your money isn’t it”?

Yes, I suppose it is.

“Think about it. We had the money available and we knew we wanted to spend more time in Nerja and the surrounding area. To spend six months down there would cost us a fortune in rental or hotel bills. So, if we tioe up some of our capital we can use that to leverage the funds we need to stay there whenever we want. Plus Spain is very much on the up as Greece and other areas of Europe start to fail. They are expecting 10 million extra holidaymakers in 2015 alone. Consequntly, we bought at exactly the right time.”

“Our agent valued the place for us last week. Our amazing apartments in nerja is now worth more than the combined price we paid for it AND the refurbishment costs – which were not inconsequential”

Happy days then?

“Happy days indeed, it truly is a lifestyle business because it pays for the lifestyle I want”!

Now that you cannot argue with!

Here’s a video giving you a guided tour of the apartment with Derek on the other side of the camera!