As the owner of Rochester Building and Damp, Martin Sykes has built a reputation for providing high-quality timber and damp preservation services in Medway and the surrounding areas. In this interview with Jill Parry from HubDot, Martin shares his insights on running a successful business in the industry and offers some practical tips for homeowners struggling with damp.
Jill: Martin, could you start by telling us a little bit about how you got into the timber and damp preservation business?
Martin: Sure, Jill. I actually started out in the construction industry, working on various building projects in the Medway area. But I soon realized that there was a real need for specialist services in timber and damp preservation, particularly in older properties that were suffering from moisture-related problems. So, I set up Rochester Building and Damp to address that need and provide homeowners with a reliable, professional service.
Jill: What’s the best thing about running a timber and damp preservation company in Medway?
Martin: There are a few things that I really enjoy about the job. Firstly, I love being able to help people solve their damp problems and restore their homes to a safe and comfortable condition. It’s a great feeling to see the difference that our work can make. Secondly, I enjoy working with a range of different clients, from homeowners to landlords and commercial property owners. It keeps things interesting and varied.
Jill: What’s the biggest challenge you face in the industry?
Martin: I think one of the biggest challenges we face is educating people about the importance of damp prevention and treatment. Many homeowners don’t realize how serious damp problems can be and often ignore the signs until it’s too late. So, we try to raise awareness about the issue and encourage people to take action as soon as possible.
Jill: What’s the best way to tackle damp in the home?
Martin: There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the best approach will depend on the specific circumstances of each case. However, there are a few general tips that can help. Firstly, it’s important to identify the source of the damp and fix any underlying issues, such as a leaky roof or faulty guttering. Then, you need to dry out the affected area and treat any mold or rot that has developed. Finally, you should take steps to prevent damp from recurring, such as improving ventilation and using a dehumidifier.
Jill: What’s the most common mistake people make when trying to tackle damp themselves?
Martin: I think one of the biggest mistakes people make is assuming that all damp problems are the same and can be fixed with a quick DIY solution. In reality, there are many different types of damp, each with their own causes and treatments. So, people often end up wasting time and money on ineffective solutions that don’t address the underlying issue.
Jill: How do you stay up-to-date with the latest developments in the industry?
Martin: We’re constantly researching and learning about new technologies and techniques in the industry, attending conferences and training sessions, and collaborating with other experts in the field. We also regularly review our own practices and procedures to ensure that we’re providing the best possible service to our clients.
Jill: What advice would you give to someone thinking of starting their own business in the industry?
Martin: I would say that it’s important to have a genuine passion for the work and a desire to help people. It’s also crucial to be patient and persistent, as building a successful business takes time and effort. Finally, you need to be willing to adapt and evolve as the industry changes, and to always put the needs of your clients first.
Jill: Thanks so much for your time, Martin. It’s been great to hear your insights and advice on the industry.
Martin: My pleasure Jill.