Tributes pour in for property entrepreneur and ambassador
- Credit: Archant
Norfolk man Chris Hall, who "loved all things property", has died, aged 73.
Christopher Clive Hall, who lived in Skeyton, near North Walsham, passed away on December 5, leaving a wife, Wendy and son, Ben. He was also stepfather to Matthew and Rachel, grandad to Lola, Sienna and Imogen and brother to Lisa.
Mr Hall , who came from Norwich, received the highest accolade in his industry when he was made president of the National Association of Estate Agents in 2005.
He was also treasurer of the Norwich & District Association of Estate Agents, of which he was a founder member, for 12 years.
Working in property for more than half a century, Mr Hall was an entrepreneur, often ahead of the rest.
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He was renowned for always looking dapper, often dressed in a cream linen suit, whatever the weather.
His CV lists 20 different positions of authority in various property businesses.
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Starting out as a trainee quantity surveyor in 1966, Mr Hall, with his robust nature but an enormous sense of humour, quickly showed aptitude for being at the helm.
In two years he was project manager at May Gurney in Norwich before going on to become chairman and director in construction businesses locally.
In 1985 he set up his own property management firm, Hallmark. His expertise in property but desire to break boundaries and invest in new ventures saw him help create Home Stagers in 2009.
The concept of staging a home with interiors to sell was almost unheard of in Norfolk but Mr Hall saw its potential.
He had a strong desire for improvements in his industry and campaigned hard for them.
When president of the NAEA he was instrumental in getting the ill-fated Home Information Pack abolished.
He was an ambassador for Wroxham Football Club's open academy, and a parish councillor for Wroxham.
He also was a chairman of the Drayton and Taverham Interface from 2013, helping to build better business relationships.
He loved cricket, sailing and Norwich City FC, being an associate director at the club from 2004.
In 2009 he helped set up a new estate agency in Norwich called Homeworks and then in 2011 another, Iconic.
Mr Hall also saw the opportunities of investing in property abroad and in 2006 set up his own agency, Villas Abroad.
He went on to become an international member of the National Association of Realtors USA, and a judge for many different property-related boards.
Never one to stop putting his energy and expertise into new areas, Mr Hall helped set up the Mortgage Advice Bureau Norwich in 2010 before, in more recent years, working for his own property consultancy.
He was a hugely generous man, who at Christmas would always leave presents for staff.
Mr Hall was always full of encouragement for those who tried to better themselves, recently commenting on a post on LinkedIn from a woman who had set up her own estate agency, saying: "It's not all about the money, that follows.
"It's about loving what you do and wanting to know and being experienced and certified."
Jan Hytch, chairwoman of the NDAEA, said: "Members were saddened to hear of the passing of Chris Hall.
"A significant figure in the estate agency landscape in Norfolk, Chris enjoyed a reputation for his love of all things property
"Chris was generous with his time and always happy to share his knowledge and experience."
Nick Salmon, managing director of the national website Property Industry Eye, said: “In his business life he was always fizzing with ideas, always looking for the next opportunity.
"In recent years, he would phone up out of the blue and say 'What do you think about this?'
"He was a kind and thoughtful man, generous of spirit and an ambassador for our industry. He will be sadly missed.”