Auction Roundup – the guaranteed success of auctions

13 November 2020 | Investment

October was a fruitful month for auctioneers, with iamsold, Auction House and Strettons seeing good results from their most recent sales. Meanwhile, Wilsons Auctions outlines why auctions are the ultimate method for property sellers.

Auction sales at iamsold raise £53m in capital value

October was iamsold’s second highest month for sales this year with 421 properties sold via the Modern Method of Auction (MMoA), raising over £53 million in capital value for sellers.

This is 27% up in sales compared to October 2019, as MMoA is proving a popular and reliable option for sellers in need of quick and secure sales.

A total of 3,269 bids were placed and the majority of buyers bought for owner occupation (42%).

The highest sale price for a single property was £830,000, and the month earned iamsold’s network of Partner Agents over £1.3 million in fees.

Managing director Jamie Cooke says: “Our highest volume of MMoA sales so far this year saw 445 transactions in July which was record-breaking for our business. October was almost in line with this as the auction market remains strong, with vendors turning to MMoA for speed and security more than ever.”

“Traditionally the autumn months leading up to Christmas are our busiest time of the year, supporting our partner agents to sell their clients’ properties in the best way suited to their circumstances. This year comes with added elements including the approaching stamp duty deadline and impacts of Covid-19, contributing to how active the market is.”

Auction House sales ahead of the race in October

Auction House has announced a record October result, with a total of over £64.6 million raised – the highest monthly figure for the group in 2020.

The amount achieved is also the second highest the auction house has ever recorded. Full figures show 421 auction lots sold from 517 offered, with an 81.4% success rate.

Founding director Roger Lake says the results ‘tella powerful story about the effectiveness of regional auctions’. He comments: “We have always said that selling locally using our regional expertise is the best way to secure the highest prices – and these figures prove it!”

“Across the country, we are selling a huge number of lots under the hammer every month, often several times more than any other auctioneer. This now includes more high-value properties and family homes, along with mixed-use, land and commercial lots too.”

Lake says that TV programmes such as the BBC’s ‘Homes Under The Hammer’ and Channel 4’s ‘The Great House Giveaway’ have helped highlight the opportunities that auctions offer.

He explains: “The supply profile is very encouraging. Individuals purchasing for owner-occupation or a refurbishment projects are far more prevalent, and auctions are unquestionably growing in popularity.”

“Certainly, our bidder numbers are up, and the remote bidding methods that we use – whether it’s via livestream, online, telephone or proxy – are now well established and fully accepted.”

When looking at the cumulative 10-month results, 2,709 lots were sold from 3,425 offered, at a success rate of 79.1% and sales of £366.3 million.

Lake says while Covid may have limited the year’s activity so far, Lockdown 2 is very different as the government is actively encouraging the buying and selling of property to continue. He anticipates Q4 will deliver a strong finish to the year.

“October produced a record outcome and we have high hopes for November and December. Despite the global pandemic, the group is well on-track to achieve over 3,000 lots sold for the sixth year in succession – again, a record that no other auctioneer can match!”

Strettons raises £11.7 million at October sale

October was a successful month for Strettons, which raised £11.7 million and sold 91% of the properties offered.

The sale marks the firm’s fifth auction since the start of lockdown, during which time Strettons has raised £59.4 million with an average success rate of 88%.

The highest price of the sale was achieved for a freehold residential investment comprising eight flats and six ground rents on Sutherland Avenue in Maida Vale, W9, which went for £801,000. This was followed by a freehold vacant land site with planning permission for a three-bedroom house and two two-bedroom flats on Bakers Avenue, Walthamstow, E17. It sold for £601,000.

Many residential properties performed well and sold prior to the auction – a sign of the current freeze on stamp duty payments.

Commenting on the sale, auction director Andrew Brown says: “I am pleased with the results we have achieved for our clients and with our overall total.”

“There was healthy interest for the majority of properties which is always a good indicator of market sentiment. Investors recognise when lots are sensibly priced, and these have performed well in our sales and those of other auction houses.”

Lots are invited for Strettons’ next sale which will take place on Tuesday 15 December 2020. The auction will be livestreamed with online, telephone and proxy bidding.

Need a property sold? Auctions are best, says Wilsons

Wilsons Auctions reinforces the notion that selling at auction is the best way to mitigate the risk of a sale falling through.

Sometimes seen as the last resort for selling property – although quickly becoming a popular route in light of Covid – offering a property under auction contract gives certainty of a successful outcome to sellers and buyers.

Wilsons says there is also a misconception that a property will be sold at any price at auction, however, a property will only be sold if the bidding meets or beats the reserve price agreed with the seller.

Dave Pennick, corporate services executive at Wilsons Auctions, explains: “There are many benefits to selling property under contract at auction, namely the immediate exchange of a binding contract, a 10% deposit paid by the successful bidder on the fall of the hammer, subject to meeting the reserve price and a fixed completion date. This reduces holding costs and assures a property will be sold at market value, with no risk of falling through.”

Given the current climate within the property industry, it is estimated that fall-throughs on property sales is currently at a very high level in the UK. However, Wilsons says property auctions can offer sellers a fixed and short completion, giving them confidence in times when they are in need to sell.

Pennick adds: “Our experience is that properties priced appropriately and entered early into the auction cycle, with legal packs available well in advance of auction day, allowing us to provide focused marketing and facilitating viewings.”

“Generally, properties receive strong pre-auction interest, sometimes pre-auction offers which are reported to the vendor, or sell in the room. So, I would encourage private vendors who are in want to sell their property to make the most of our free valuation and get in touch.”

Wilsons Auctions Online Land & Property Auction in Northern Ireland takes place on the last Thursday of each month. It is part of Wilsons Auctions’ group-wide Land and Property Department offering auction solutions to buyers and sellers across the whole of the UK and Ireland, hosting up to 60 property auctions annually.

This post has originally been featured in Property Investor Today.