Auction roundup – high success rates and PropTech startups

16 September 2020 | Investment

From successful sales for Network Auctions and Sutton Kersh Auctions, to brand-new auction startup Aucspace aiming to streamline the bidding process, Property Investor Today delves into this week’s top auction news.

Network Auctions registers another successful sale

Network Auctions’ latest online property sale achieved a 90% sales success rate and raised £1.78 million.

Director Toby Limbrick says its continued success shows ‘the strength of the market and the demand from buyers for attractive opportunities’.

The auction took place on September 10, with a public house in Berkshire, a lock-up garage in Wembley and a detached villa in Plymouth all among the 32-lot catalogue.

“We’ve always been a nationwide firm and online auctions allow us to cater for everybody without them having to set foot out of the door,” Limbrick comments. “Increasingly we are seeing buyers enjoy the convenience and flexibility of online bidding.”

“Investors are still attracted to yields and potential development angles and so we are seeing short lease flats, smaller parcels of land and garages retaining strong interest levels.”

He concludes: “We believe we have produced another solid performance underlining the strength of the property market, despite the effects of Covid-19.”

Network Auctions’ next online auction will take place on October 1.

Sutton Kersh Auctions sells over £8.5m worth of property to date

Sutton Kersh’s sold 76 properties in its September sale, bringing its total number of properties sold at auction to 377 and an overall £8.5 million raised.

Its fifth auction of the year saw strong bidding from the offset, with investment and residential properties proving extremely popular.

Lot 1, a three-bed semi-detached home in L7, had 22 bidders registered and sold for £120,000 against a guide price of £70,000.

A three-storey mixed-use property on County Road sold for £30,000 over the guide price due to the current high demand for this type of property.

Cathy Holt, associate director of Sutton Kersh, said: “It was great to see so many lots selling for above their guide price. We have so far sold 80% of Lots offered, with more being sold post-auction and I am delighted to have achieved this result once again whilst we are in a pandemic.”

Further highlights of the sale include; lot 8, a three-storey mid-terraced property in Bootle that was converted into three self-contained flats, which sold for £138,000 – a huge £38,000 over the guide, and lot 27, a vacant two-bed on Hawkins Street in the L6, which had a guide price of £40,000 and sold for £73,000.

Lot 87 in Wavertree was the ultimate ‘doer-upper’ for those who wanted to expand their property portfolio. It gained a lot of pre-auction interest with 30 bidders registered and sold for £47,500 over the guide price.

A sizable four-bedroom semi-detached property in Torquay, Devon was ‘exceptionally’ popular with bidders. It had a guide price of £235,000 and sold for £307,500.

Holt adds: “Demand is still high for properties throughout the country, especially in Liverpool and on the South Coast. The Croft in Paignton in Devon is a fantastic example of this. This beautiful three-bedroom bungalow sold for £370,000 which was £30,000 over the guide price.”

Sutton Kersh is now taking instructions for their next live-streamed auction which will take place on October 22.

Auction PropTech platform launched to streamline buying process

A new PropTech startup has launched in a bid to give prospective bidders the chance to buy at auction in a more affordable, hassle-free way.

Aucspace is providing buyers with Legal Pack Summaries, which reduce hundreds of pages of legal documentation provided by sellers into an ‘easy-to-read report of a few pages’, viewable online or as a download.

Prepared by expert in-house property lawyers, the reports feature a section-by-section summary as well as suggested auctions. The platform also automatically reviews new revisions and alerts the customer as soon as changes are updated on the run-up to auction.

Although auctioneers recommend all bidders get legal advice on the seller’s documentation, only one third hire solicitors knowing they may not win the bid, while the remaining two-thirds try to mitigate risk by wading through documentation themselves or rely on legally savvy family or contacts.

The company was founded this year by chief executive Andy Mendelsohn, chief operating officer Matt Geppert and directors Daniel Shafron and Adam Russell. It says its inspiration to create a new alternative comes from direct experience with the problem.

Aucspace currently has two in-house property solicitors and will be expanding the team as it rolls out its platform to offer services for all upcoming UK auctions.

“Our priority in building Aucspace for the auction industry was using technology to enable more efficiency and transparency for buyers where there has been little,” Andy Mendelsohn explains.

“It has been encouraging, at the same time, to see the auctioneers adapting during the Covid pandemic with increased adoption of online practices.”

“We are delighted to have Stretton’s lead the industry by offering our product directly to their customers. Forging this ‘new normal’ is needed now more than ever.”

The platform confirmed that Strettons is the first auction house to sign up for the service and has been providing it to buyers ahead of its September event which takes place today (September 16).

Andrew Brown, director of auctions at Strettons, comments: “I personally think Aucspace is a brilliant idea. We’re immensely proud to be the first auction house to join forces to bring this service to our customers in our September auction.”

This post has originally been featured in Property Investor Today.