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Allsop held  their first two day residential property sale for 15 months this week raising a total of £61m from the sale of 265 lots.  Held on Tuesday 29 and Thursday 31 May at the Park Lane Hotel, Piccadilly, London, the marathon event achieved a success rate of 77% against an industry average of 68%.

Speaking after the sale, Allsop auctioneer and partner, Gary Murphy, commented “This has been a very encouraging couple of days, particularly against the background of a double dip recession and recent economic uncertainty in the Eurozone. These events do nothing for market confidence yet buyers were bidding vigorously for higher quality lots in safe locations. London and the South East seems to be gaining strength at the expense of some of the economically weaker regional locations.

He continued

“It’s been well documented recently that the commercial investment market has softened and that buyers are turning to residential. We saw several examples this week of otherwise difficult commercial investments selling very well off the back of valuable planning consents for residential conversion.”

Murphy cited lot 25, a 6440 sq ft office and retail development known as Victoria House, Victoria Street, St Albans on behalf of Prupim Fund Management .  Mainly vacant but offered with the benefit of consent for change of use to provide nine self-contained flats, the property sold for £1,000,000 from a guide of £750,000+.

He also pointed to lot 26, Senate House, Southgate Road, Potters Bar, a 7000 sq ft office block producing £93,700 pa, but subject to a 20 month unexpired term, which sold under the hammer for £1,340,000  from a guide of £1.1 – £1.2m. The building had planning permission for conversion to 14 flats.

Confident bidding drove prices well over guides for London development opportunities. A freehold derelict industrial building with no planning consents but strong potential was offered for the London Borough of Hackney and made £1,660,000 (guide £300,000). The Powerhaus, a listed former pub in Seven Sisters Road, Finsbury Park, London N4 went for £1,400,000 (guide £400,000) on behalf of receivers. A site with consent for a mixed use scheme under the shadow of railway arches on Great Suffolk Street, Southwark, London SE1 was knocked down for £1,230,000 (guide £1m). And a Grade II Listed former pumping station in Chingford, E4, with planning permission for 5 dwellings, fetched £777,000 (guide £400,000).

Murphy said “These sales should give a welcome boost to confidence in the development market. All of these sites prompted lengthy battles between numerous bidders”.

Plenty of opportunities were available to owner occupiers also. A five bedroom family house in Pinner in need of repair made £545,000 (guide £400,000), a three bedroom semi detached house in Epsom fetched £330,000 (guide £250,000) and a maisonette in Cornwall Gardens was sold for £2,050,000 (guide £1.85m) on behalf of mortgagees.

“Owner occupiers are for more prevalent at auction than they have ever been but demand is largely cash driven.” said Murphy. “Our buyers appreciate the opportunity of a binding contract on the fall of the hammer.”

And finally, Kirklinton Hall, a totally derelict Grade II Listed country house in Cumbria, was sold to a private purchaser for £311,000. The buyer intends to convert one wing into a house in time for his son to move in. He is now 10 years old. “That should give him enough time to complete the renovation work!” remarked the auctioneer, Richard Adamson.


Notes to editor

Allsop is an independent property consultancy with a market-leading reputation for high quality service, integrity and innovation. We are also well known as the UK’s largest and most successful auction house.  Our success is built on over 100 years’ experience in commercial and residential property consultancy and sales.


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