Brixton-based estate agent is offering the money to any local homeowner who lets them value their property for rent or sale.
A London estate agent is offering to pay homeowners cash just to look inside their property — and more if they put it on the market.
In a sign that the capital’s housing market continues to heat up, a Brixton-based estate agent is offering the money to any local homeowner who lets them value their property for rent or sale. The money will be paid irrespective of whether they decide to list the property with the estate agency, the firm’s managing director has promised.
But if any owner does go on to list their property with the firm — again for rent or sale — the estate agency promises to pay an extra sum with “no strings attached”.
Estate agents have in the past offered inducements such as food hampers to persuade people to book valuations.
But Keating Estates’s offer of paying up to £300 is believed to be the first time anyone has promised cash in return for the opportunity to get a property on its books, albeit in Brixton Pounds — a currency that can be used in hundreds of shops, cafes and restaurants in the local area.
The offer is a sign of how London’s red-hot housing market continues to defy predictions of a Brexit-related downturn, and marks an uptick in the lengths estate agents will go to obtain new properties for sale and rent.
“But this is 100 per cent not a gimmick. Anyone who books a valuation with us: we will come round, have a look at your home, and then hand you £50 as we leave.
“If you decide you want to market your property with us, we’ll give you another £250. The only condition with that is we have to be the sole agent.
“Obviously someone could, at that point, turn around and take their property off the market again, and they would be £300 up. But I just don’t believe they will.”
Mr Mercieca said he is currently only looking for properties in Brixton, Clapham and East Dulwich.
He said his firm ran a similar promotion at the beginning of the year. While refusing to reveal how much the firm paid out, he insisted that the promotion “was well worth it” from a business perspective.
“The last time we did this in January it worked very well. We got a decent number of new valuations and listings off the back of it,” he said.