Auction roundup – in-person sales return in a successful month ahead

Kicking off the month of May with some good news for in-person auctions. Meanwhile, agents witnessed another successful month with SDL Property Auctions and Acuitus will see London assets dominate its May sale. For those feeling flush, a beachside toilet block in Cumbria features in Landwood Property Auctions’ next sale, and Network Auctions reports the unusual lots that received top bids.

In-person auctions are coming back with a bang, says Loveitts

Auctioneer Loveitts says it is preparing to step up to the podium for its first in-person auction in two years.

Throughout the pandemic, all Loveitts auctions have been live-streamed to adhere to government-imposed lockdowns and social distancing rules.

But with almost all UK restrictions lifted, buyers can now immerse themselves in the excitement of a live, in-person auction, with the first taking place on May 19.

Loveitts will also continue to offer buyers three other methods for bidding on lots – live stream, by proxy or post.

And with a wide range of properties set to go under the hammer, from investment opportunities, residential homes and vacant land, Loveitts claims the upcoming auction promises to be ‘bigger and better than ever before’.

Sally Smith, director and auctioneer at Loveitts, comments: “This will be such an exciting day for us as nothing beats the thrill of a live, in-person auction. After two years of live streaming, it will feel incredible to be back in the room with our buyers, watching the joy on their faces when they successfully bid on their new homes.”

“We are also delighted with the quality and selection of lots set to go under the hammer on May 19. There is definitely something for everyone, with homes priced across all budgets, as well as land and commercial buildings which offer excellent opportunities for investors.”

Throughout the pandemic, auctions have maintained excellent engagement with buyers, with Loveitts hosting a mixture of national online and live-streamed auctions.

The firm achieved an impressive 88% success rate last year and are a member of Auction House – one of the UK’s largest residential and commercial property auction company.

It says part of the success has been driven by the housing market remaining strong over the last year with many properties achieving above guide prices and investment properties returning strong yields.

According to Shawbrook Bank’s 2021 report, rents across the UK increased 1.6% year-on-year. However, both the West Midlands and East Midlands saw growth of more than two per cent.

Smith adds: “Over the last couple of years, we have seen buyers coming from both in and outside of the region. The Midlands is a popular location to live as it has a good blend of houses, from affordable family homes close to schools and shops, to countryside dwellings in idyllic settings.”

“Also, with its thriving student communities and some of the country’s biggest employers on its doorstep, the region presents some fantastic buy-to-let investment opportunities.”

She concludes: “With rental yields increasing, we are seeing more and more business-minded individuals choosing to invest in properties and maximise on the opportunities that the buy-to-let market presents.”

The first in-person auction in two years will take place on Thursday May 19 at The Village Hotel in Coventry.  Bidding can also take place through the live stream, by proxy or phone.

Anyone wishing to bid virtually can register online here.

Agents witnessed an amazing April with SDL Property Auctions

In its ongoing bid to help agents, SDL Property Auctions says it helped its partner agents from across the UK to secure ‘fantastic’ results for their properties during April.

The auctioneer offered a range of lots, from classic terraces to large family homes, with the majority going under the hammer, raising over £18 million.

A month of successful Timed Auction results crescendoed to its conclusion with April’s National Property Auction, with SDL Property Auction’s partner estate agents benefitting from having both sales methods at their disposal.

One of the first lots to sell in April’s live-streamed auction was 18 Dashwood Street in Derby. Offered for sale in partnership with Hannells, the substantial two bedroomed terrace located within easy reach of the city centre and in need of a full scheme of renovation works, sold for £81,000 – not far off twice its guide price of £45,000-plus.

Excellent results were obtained across the East Midlands, with the sale of 95 Alfreton Road in Nottinghamshire, which was offered in partnership with Amber Homes. Arranged as a three bedroomed detached home and generally in good condition throughout, the property received a number of bids, eventually selling for £137,000 after being offered at a guide price of £110,000-plus.

But it wasn’t just residential opportunities going under the hammer. In Coleorton in Leicestershire, a parcel of land plus stables were offered in partnership with Reddington Sales and Lettings. Extending to approximately 7.8 acres in total, the site contains a timber stable block, as well as a concrete yard with feed and hay stores. With huge scope for development for a variety of uses, this sold for £200,000 – £25,000 over its guide price of £175,000-plus.

The auction action could be found online too, with The Cedars in Kidderminster selling for £826,000 in a Timed Auction, after being offered at a guide price of £640,000-plus and receiving 61 bids. Offered for sale in partnership with Nock Deighton, the property sits on a plot of approximately 6.5 acres, with the detached bungalow including a triple garage and offering scope for the buyer to update and extend to their own specifications – subject to planning permission being obtained.  

Andrew Parker, managing director and auctioneer, comments: “It’s always exciting watching the bids come through with seconds of each other, and it really can be as exciting as being in the room.”

“I would encourage any estate agent who finds themselves resorting to best and finals in the current market to get in touch to see how auction could present an excellent alternative to achieving the best possible price for your sellers.”

The next National Property Auction takes place on Thursday May 26. Those looking to sell property by auction, either in the live-streamed National Property Auction or in a Timed Auction online, can get in touch on 0800 046 5454 or request a free sales valuation online to find out more.

London assets most prominent in Acuitus May auction

London properties represent nearly a third of the lots being offered at the upcoming Acuitus auction on May 18.

Richard Auterac, chairman of Acuitus, comments: “Greater London is still the favoured location of many investors but supply remains relatively constrained.”

“In the first quarter of this year, our Commercial Property Auction Data (cPad) research shows that London accounted for 17% of the lots sold by number, and 27% by value of all UK transactions. This was well above the 10-year average of 20%.”

The London properties in the May sale include investments in Kenton, Winchmore Hill, Shepherd’s Bush, Euston and Tooting. Guide prices range from £425,000 to the £2.95 million being asked for a freehold retail and office investment on Tooting High Street. The property comprises a large ground floor unit let to Ladbrokes with offices on the first, second and third floors. It produces a current annual income of £205,862.

David Margolis, investment director and auctioneer at Acuitus, says: “Following the success of the two auctions we have held this year, which have raised around £50 million under the hammer, it’s encouraging to see the variety of assets that we are now seeing on offer.”

At the May sale, a mixed-use property in the centre of Coventry is the largest lot on offer. The Old County Hall in Bayley Lane comprises a ground floor let to a Slug & Lettuce bar on a lease expiring in 2041 while the upper floors consist of 17 student accommodation units let to Coventry University. The property produces current annual rental income of £203,316 and the guide price is £2.95-£3 million. 

Acuitus director, John Mehtab, adds: “This is a substantial prominent town centre property and investors will be attracted by both the long lease on the leisure element and also the strong covenant backing the student accommodation.”

Two shopping centres also feature in the May catalogue. The 51,498 sq ft Roebuck Shopping Centre in Newcastle under Lyme generates an annual income of £102,416 and is being offered with a guide price of £650,000-£700,000.

In Falkirk, the Howgate Shopping Centre which comprises some 185,000 sq ft of accommodation currently arranged as 56 units has a guide price of £500,000. It currently produces annual gross rental income of just over £1,000,000. 

The auction also includes a light industrial asset in Norwood, south London, which is being sold on instructions of Joint LPA Receivers. The property currently produces £91,200 annually, and has a guide price of £1.2-£1.3 million.

Acuitus director, Charlie Powter, concludes: “In the recent cycle, we have not yet seen large numbers of distressed assets coming to auction, but LPA Receiverships such as this are now steadily increasing. The pace of this trend may quicken as interest rates rise and refinancing becomes more expensive”.

The Acuitus auction will take place on May 18 at 1pm and will be broadcast via live stream on the Acuitus website with bidding online, by telephone and by proxy. Further details can be found here.

Beachside toilet block enters market for £7,500

A toilet block that offers some of the best views in Britain has hit the market for £7,500 with Landwood Property Auctions.

The beachside public convenience looks out onto the ‘breath-taking’ Solway Estuary, with Scotland’s Southern Uplands beyond.

Located in the village of Allonby on the north west coast of Cumbria, the facilities have a footprint of 33 sq metres.

A holiday hotspot in a designated Area Of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Allonby also boasts three caravan and camping parks alongside numerous holiday cottages.

Auctioneers at Landwood Property Auctions are selling the property on behalf of Allerdale Borough Council with a reserve price of £7,500.

Subject to obtaining the necessary consents, the block could enjoy a number of potential new uses in the future.

Director James Ashworth comments: “For generations, the spectacular coastline around Allonby has proved an irresistible draw for holidaymakers of all ages.”

“You will have to spend a little more than a penny, but this former public convenience presents a great opportunity for the right person.”

He adds: “At Landwood Property Auctions we are renowned for achieving superb sale prices for councils, with the Directors having dealt with over 400 auction sales for local authorities throughout their career.”

“Our results have always been impressive, with selling prices for councils a combined 70 per cent above the reserve prices set over the last three years. So, don’t risk getting caught short, register your interest now.”

Bidding for the lot opened on April 27 and more information can be viewed here.

Unusual lots top Network Auctions’ best-selling list

Network Auctions’ online sale on April 28 raised a total of £4.3 million and a sales result of 78%, with the properties boasting something a ‘little bit different’ attracting the most attention.

A chocolate box cottage on the Dorset coast was a winner considering the current staycation boom and desire to move to the country. Guided at £450,000-plus, the three-bedroom property in Chaldon Herring achieved a 50% uplift selling for £672,000.

Auctioneer Richard Worrall says: “This lovely property had been in the same ownership for 47 years. The sellers provided a full description and itinerary of works carried out during their ownership. This kind of attention to detail is unusual and proved to buyers what a loved home this had been.”

Interestingly, problematic lots do not always put bidders off – as the sale of Beechwood Avenue, Greenford displayed.

The three-bedroom semi-detached was an illegal conversion arranged as three flats which had a current enforcement notice in place to restore the property to a single dwelling from Ealing Borough Council. With a reserve at £340,000, the property attracted multiple bids and sold for £441,000.

But the star of the auction room was a parcel of amenity land equivalent to 0.218 acres situated in an established residential area in Derriford, Plymouth. Despite no planning permission and only speculative potential for development, the property exceeded all expectations attracting 40 registered bidders and 185 bids to achieve a sale price of £82,250 – 33 times its reserve. 

Toby Limbrick, auctioneer, adds: “Our latest auction has shown a solid performance with some outstanding prices achieved for happy sellers.”

Network Auctions’ next auction will be held online on June 9. For more information, visit www.networkauctions.co.uk.

Written by: Houseladder