About Us

Toby Nicholson, the founder of LRA, has three decades of experience alongside a successful track record in residential and commercial real estate.

LRA offers tailored advice to clients within their chosen geographies and asset classes. Comfortable working with private and public groups, both domestic and overseas, Toby’s specialty lies in advising on all aspects of Build to Rent (BTR). His proven track record of successfully leading transaction and consultancy projects dates back to 2012, when global interest initially sparked in the sector.

Recognising the importance and strength of client relationships, our principal aim is to complement skill sets and maximise value. 


“Property disposal is defined as the sale or transfer of a building(s), site(s) as well as the land on which they sit”


“Property acquisition is defined as the process of gaining ownership or rights over real estate”


“Providing real estate investment advice to clients after careful analysis of market conditions & trends.”


Craig Marks
Founder & Chief Executive

I have worked closely with Toby and his team at Colliers since 2015, principally focused on my site in East Croydon, where he was always loyal, willing to go the extra mile to support and help progress the project.

He worked with us on re purposing the scheme for build to rent and identifying a forward funding partner.

We were delighted to reach financial close on the project with MEC during the Covid in Summer 2020 and started on site within days of finalising documents. 

Menta look forward to working with LRA on future projects.

Jason Cheng
Senior Director
Balfour Beatty Investments

I have discussed numerous build-to-rent projects that Balfour Beatty Investments considered with Toby since 2013. He has been friendly and professional to deal with, always given insightful, data backed advice and has understood the nuances of the sector as it has evolved.

We instructed Toby and his team at Colliers to give consultancy advice on the design, layouts, amenity provision, optimisation and funding of our Manchester development of 274 apartments which we successful partnered with AIG on.

Paul McGowan
Executive Director, Grainger Trust
Grainger PLC Development Board Member

I’ve known and worked with Toby over the last 15+ years, most recently when LRA represented Grainger acquiring Exmouth Junction in Exeter, off market. 

Toby recognised the opportunity of Grainger’s revised strategy and the scheme represents the first BTR land led project in the South West. Toby brought a complete grasp of the elements needed to advance the project to financial close, and was able to integrate and support the wider team throughout the acquisition due diligence process.

It was a pleasure working with LRA and Toby again and I have little doubt our paths will cross in the future

Dan Batterton
Head of BTR
Legal & General Investment Management

Toby has been ever present in the BTR market ever since L&G chose to deploy capital into the sector in 2015, and even before. As such we have had the pleasure of working with him on 3 of our investments in Wandsworth, Chelmsford and Southampton. He has acted both on our behalf but also where L&G have been partnering with his other clients so there is a strong, mutually respectful working relationship where he has been successful in working collaboratively to reach the common goal of financial close on projects, in what are often complex situations, involving multiple stakeholders.

His ability to problem solve, his knowledge of the nuances of development, construction the BTR market drivers and more specifically to us, of how L&G are looking to expand, makes it highly likely there will be other chances to work together in the future.

Steve Hollands
Senior Investment Manager
Pension Insurance Corporation (PIC)

I have enjoyed working with Toby over a number of years on build-to-rent forward funding opportunities.  Toby has an excellent knowledge of the residential investment market and understands the requirements of institutional investors.

He is commercially astute and able to identify deliverable projects and bring the respective parties together, managing the process in a fair and professional manner.

In 2020, Toby supported PIC on our £130m New Victoria BTR scheme in Manchester.  This was our first transaction in the sector on a highly complex site.  Toby brought us to the table with Muse and was our key point of contact at Colliers, ensuring the right support from the wider team as required.

In an evolving Build to Rent market, Toby provides sage advice in order to ensure the best outcome for his clients.

Michael Hawkins
Senior Director
Colliers International

I have worked with Toby on various projects since 2015 and our relationship benefits from mutual respect, team work and the collective aim of achieving the best result for the client.

My knowledge of the Manchester real estate market and what Toby brings in BTR insight, experience and understanding was instrumental in progressing the deal with Muse and Pension Insurance Corporation.

As team players, we are actively looking at ways to work together on future projects.