Allsop’s latest residential auction achieved a total of £57 million, with 258 lots offered and 192 lots sold.
The auction was held at the InterContinental London Park Lane on 28 March, just a day before the original date for the UK’s proposed withdrawal from the EU. Despite economic uncertainty and turmoil in Westminster, the firm achieved a 76% success rate.
The largest lot, Lot 50, was a 31-year unexpired leasehold building at 33 Charles Street, Mayfair, London. Sold on behalf of receivers, the property is arranged as five self-contained flats with a combined total of 6,260 sq ft. It was occupied on disputed terms and offered subject to pre-registered arrangements, guided at £6 million but knocked down for £6.6 million.
Investors in the protected tenancy sector were out in force, with a total of 16 regulated investments being sold with an average yield of 3.49%. Ground rents were also favourable – however, there are signs that specialists in this market are concerned about legislative change.
As always, development opportunities drew competitive bidding and several were presented on behalf of NHS Property Services. Lot 7, a former health centre on a site of 0.156 acres in Holly Park Road, Friern Barnet, London N11, sold at £1.03 million from a guide of £820,000.
Despite recent changes in the buy-to-let market with regards to mortgage interest tax relief and stamp duty, there was sustained demand from larger investors for assured shorthold tenancy (AST) income. Lot 49, for example, was an unbroken block of 12 self-contained flats in Howard Close, Waltham Abbey. Fully let on ASTs and generating £123,600 per annum, the lot fetched £1.59 million (7.8%).
“We’re experiencing one of the most uncertain economic periods for decades. Yet, it seems that there is still a level of resilience in our auction rooms,” Gary Murphy, partner and auctioneer at Allsop, said.
“With realistic pricing, it’s entirely possible to generate competition and achieve strong prices. Reassuringly, we also saw a good level of post-auction activity with deals being done on unsold lots before the day closed.”
He concluded: “Although there’s unlikely to be any clarity on Brexit for some months now, I think that our recent sales are demonstrating that buyers and sellers are intent on carrying on with business as usual.”
Allsop’s next auction will take place on May 30 at The InterContinental London Park Lane, W1J 7QY.