Monday 11 May 2015

REA T & J Gavigan 75 years in business

In the current economy, there are not too many businesses who can say they have been in operation for 75 years, but this is the proud position that REA T & J Gavigan holds, having been established in 1940 by John Gavigan and his brother Tom. The Gavigan brothers grew up in Brownstown, Co. Westmeath. Their strong business ethos was evident early on in both their careers. John learned the property trade initially in Shields General Merchants in Carrickmacross and Tom in the shoe business in Kells.
In 1940, Tom and John Gavigan established T & J Gavigan in a small office on Newmarket Street, Kells which is now part of Paddy Duff’s shoe shop in Kells. Times were different then, communication was conducted in person and not be telephone.  Deals were struck at the local fairs at Kells, Delvin, Oldcastle and Ballyjamesduff. Business was mainly about land sales and lettings and all paid in cash as very few people had bank accounts at the time.
In the 1940’s The Company had a few major sales at the time. Farms such as Boltown Hall, Kells sold at auction in March 1945 for £4000. This included a valuable residential property on c. 185 acres. Another high profile sale was c. 232 acres at Cullendragh, Batterstown, Co. Meath which sold at auction in October 1942 for c. €5,500.
T & J Gavigan went from strength to strength and in 1955 Tom’s son also known as Tom joined forces.  Tom has been at the helm of the business since then. No over 80 years of age, Tom is still dealing in property sales particularly with land sales and lettings. Tom has driven the business through the decades and has lived through the many peaks and troughs of the property market.  The focus of the business has moved with the times, through a predominantly land sales based business to a modern firm of Chartered Surveyors and Auctioneers. The company sell and let residential, agricultural and commercial property, carry out portfolio and due diligence appraisals and provide consultancy. They have a valuation department that provides mortgage, probate, commercial and red book valuations.
Various historical influences have steered this change such as when the Ground Rent Act was passed in 1967 permitting tenants to acquire the freehold ownership of their property.  Prior to that time in Kells for example, most properties in the town were owned by the Headfort Estate.  This was a major breakthrough for the property market and thus commenced the movement of both residential and commercial property sales throughout the country.
The subsequent economic dips and peaks of the 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s and 00s had further impact on how the property business evolved into what it is today with residential and commercial sales being the centre of the business.
The Gavigan family have been key players in the auctioneering business in Meath since those early days of the 1940s. In 1961 Tom bought the site on the corner of Newmarket Street and Farrell Street in Kells where the business has operated from ever since. A major professional highlight for Tom was his appointment as President of the IAVI in 1985.  This was a proud moment for him.
The biggest compliment for any parent is when their offspring follow in the same career path as them.  Tom and Marie Gavigan have four out of their six children working in property, three of which are involved with REA T & J Gavigan that’s Tom, Michael and Cara.  Eimer is the Group Marketing Manager of Real Estate Alliance of which T & J Gavigan were one of the founding members.
Michael Gavigan set up T & J Gavigan on Railway St. in Navan in 1993 and this business continues to grow from strength to strength while Tom Jnr. and Cara run the Kells office. T & J Gavigan employ a number of professionals across the residential, commercial and land sectors with expertise in sales, letting and valuations. It is testament to Tom Senior that he still works in the Kells office and looks after some of the land sales. Property is in the blood and the fact that much of the Gavigan family work in the business strengthens the credibility of the Gavigan brand and this is proved by their 75 years in business. The company would not be where it is today without the great team that work in the business. This includes Ann Moloney who deals with land lettings and general enquiries, Miriam Kiernan who is the office and accounts manager, Nessa Fitzsimons who runs the residential sales and lettings and Janette Ashmore who is Valuation’s Administrator. In the Navan office Jane Monaghan is head of residential agency, Maggie Quine is the Office Administrator and Commercial Specialist, Janet is Accounts Manager and Noelle Burke our most recent recruit is in charge Brand Marketing.  There is a great deal of professional expertise in the Kells and Navan offices with 12 employees who work very hard to get good results for their clients.