Mario’s working life started from a very young age, working in his Father’s restaurant from just 8 years old. Rather than help him financially, Mario’s Father felt that gifting him with the skills to develop a strong business acumen would be far more valuable.
Mario soon demonstrated his ability to negotiate when, at the age of 18, he found a shrewd way to purchase his first property with a no money down deal, proving from a young age his motto of “you can make money with no money”.
He used the experience to expand his skills in planning, construction and housing, and over the years developed a strong contact book in the property and banking sectors. Over the past 30 years, Mario has experienced the highs and lows of his industry. Having lost and re-built everything through two recessions, he has learnt some tough lessons in what it takes to run successful property businesses and own a self-made portfolio.
In 2009, Mario Carrozzo found himself in a fortunate enough position to be able to help a homeless person off the streets and into accommodation – but he wanted to do more. Driven by this, he identified a gap in the market to assist individuals hit by the troubled economy. Using his infinite knowledge and experience as a landlord, he pioneered one of the first rent guarantee schemes in London, assuring a reliable income for landlords and providing housing and support for those in the social sector by acting as a guarantor for vulnerable tenants who were struggling to find accommodation.
Over the last 10 years, The Caridon Group has grown rapidly, building, procuring and supplying good quality homes across London and the South East. Owning over 1500 properties and managing a further 400 via their rent guarantee scheme, Caridon provides accommodation to thousands of tenants, many of which have come as homeless referrals through their work with charities and refuges.
Today, Caridon Group is a multi-million pound property development and lettings company, which has converted a £50 million investment into £150 million to provide end-to-end residential property solutions throughout the UK, from property development and management to property advice and consultation. The Group has won several awards including:
- Commitment to the Community at the Croydon Business Excellence Awards
- Gold for the Best Letting Agent for Tenants South East Region at the ESTAS
Mario’s continued passion towards social responsibility guides the vision of the Caridon Group, which aims to create new opportunities and fairer housing for all, and this has led to the creation of services such as the not-for-profit arm of the business Caridon Foundation, as well as Caridon Landlord Solutions and Caridon Young Living.
A highly respected property entrepreneur, industry campaigner and dedicated family man, Mario continues to apply the same hands-on approach and determination to every project he undertakes and spends time running workshops and Q&As for underprivileged young people who benefit from his advice and guidance.
This year Mario was also involved in sponsoring and judging the South-East Young Start Up Talent initiative, a community-based project aimed at young entrepreneurs aged between 16 and 25 years old, who are looking to start their own business.
His motto is “Always lead by example, believe in what you do and why you do it.”
Caridon Group comprises:
Caridon Property – works closely with 32 London boroughs and receives referrals from housing associations and charities. Caridon Property are market leaders in guaranteed rent and in management in the social housing sector.
Caridon Landlord Solutions – specialises in providing advice to private landlords, letting agencies and housing associations on Universal Credit and Housing Benefit
Caridon Developments – has built an enviable reputation in both the acquisition and conversion sectors, bringing quality accommodation to market quickly and efficiently.
Caridon Foundation – The foundation offers housing related support to their tenants that are deemed vulnerable within the community. Helps tenants to successfully manage their tenancy, avoid eviction processes, improve on money management, promote independence and link them into long term support
Caridon Young Living – Is a specialist support and accommodation service targeted at 16-21year olds who are making the transition into independence but who may still require additional care and support.The team are committed to providing high quality support in a caring and positive environment in which young people can achieve independence, fulfil their potential and realise personal goals.
Despite his success, Mario believes there is still a lot of work to be done before he can feel confident that he has followed through on his company ethos of “Making a difference in housing”. With the goal of becoming a Housing Association, Mario also wants to innovate the social housing sector and bring about change to remove the stigma and create co-living with a strong sense of community.
This year, Caridon Group has moved one step further to creating a new innovative way forward for social housing. In partnership with Bristol City Council, Caridon has converted former council offices in south Bristol into residential accommodation to provide more settled housing opportunities for people in the city. The properties at Imperial Apartments are let to a range of different tenants in need of accommodation, including people who already live and work in the local community. Both the Salvation Army and the Department for Work Pensions have offices onsite at Imperial apartments, enabling tenants to get all the support they need. Caridon has also installed three onsite gyms, an IT centre, Zen Garden, playground and soft play area.
“I have a wonderful team who work with me to ensure we go above and beyond our normal duties and obligations. We aim to help and house people who have faced barriers elsewhere, because I believe everyone should be able to strive for the same advantages in their future life, regardless of their past or present situation.”