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Auction roundup – record results and PropTech partnerships

As we settle into 2021, Auction House and iamsold reflect on last year’s record sales, while Pugh announces new technology designed for estate agents.

Auction House sees best-ever success rate in 2020

Auction House UK is reporting its best-ever annual success rate of 79.2% during 2020.


The group sold more than 3,300 auctions lots for the fifth year in succession (3,304 from 4,171 offered) and raised a total of more than £447 million (£447,301,318) – up from £439 million in 2019.

Roger Lake, founding director of Auction House, comments: “2020 was a spectacular year for us. Despite the property market closing for over six weeks during the first lockdown, despite having to transfer all our room auctions to online or live stream sales, and despite ongoing coronavirus restrictions, we still managed to sell a higher percentage of lots than ever before!” 

“The auction market kept functioning, sellers and buyers remained both interested and active, and lockdown restrictions didn’t hold us back. Our immediate shift to remote bidding auctions helped maintain momentum and they grew in popularity as the year progressed.”

He adds: “This success is a tribute to the hard work and dedication of our regional teams across the UK and gives us confidence that even under another lockdown, we can look forward to similar successes in 2021.”

In December, the group sold 420 lots from 515 offered, achieving a success rate of 81.6% with almost £60.4 million sold. Monthly sales in October, November and December were all ahead of 2019 levels.

“The third national lockdown shouldn’t adversely affect us,” Lake continues. “The government has confirmed that we can still carry out valuations and viewings with safety measures in place, and we have regular live stream or online auctions booked, including weekly online auctions every Thursday.”

“What’s more, the message seems to be getting across to both buyers and sellers that – unlike the private treaty market – we can still deliver sales that complete in advance of the stamp duty holiday deadline on March 31.”

“Future uncertainty is influencing more and more sellers to choose auction and get their properties sold. Our January and February catalogues are filling quickly, and initial viewings are strong too. So, it is certainly business as usual at Auction House and 2021 looks set to be off to a very busy start!”

Auctioneer to offer PropTech support for estate agents

Property auctioneer Pugh has unveiled bespoke new technology designed to support its nationwide partnership network of estate agents.

The new platform has been developed to provide free technology to estate agents that are part of the Pugh network.

The partnership was launched in 2020 by the auction house to enable agents to securely sell properties that are unsuitable for sale by private treaty or require an immediate, unconditional sale.

Pugh’s new offering features a ‘partner portal’ online hub for agents to access training materials, videos, marketing downloads and submit new properties for auction.

Will Thompson, associate director of Pugh, comments: “We are really excited to have developed technology that not only allows us to collaborate with our partner agents in the most efficient way for them, but also enables them to work directly with their own clients and ensure they stay at the forefront of the market.”

“It has never been more crucial for agents to be able to access new revenue streams from properties and the partner portal is a simple way to refer a property to Pugh for auction, with unlimited users and varying levels of access.”

Pugh’s technology enables partner agents to directly submit properties for auction online themselves at any time, as well as seeing the status of their auction properties in real-time.

Thompson adds: “We are also providing a white-label microsite to our partner agents so that they can easily advertise the auction properties they have for sale at a Pugh auction. The site is branded with clients’ own colours and logos, so it really is seamless and has been developed to promote their brand.”

Since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in March last year, Pugh has sold lots totalling over £35 million at its online auctions. In 2019 it offered over 1,000 lots for sale at its auction venues, achieving a success rate of 85% and generating over £90 million in sales for clients.

Pugh’s next auction will be held online on January 20.

iamsold sees record online auction sales in 2020

Online auction sales at iamsold increased by a record 18% during 2020 on the previous year, with 3,770 properties sold.

Including in-room sales from the beginning of the year before the first national lockdown, the auctioneer sold 3,894 in total. This raised £529 million in capital value for sellers – up 8% compared to 2019.

Estate agents benefitted from £12 million in fees, while the company’s network of Partner Agents grew to over 2,500 branches as demand for auction services soared.

iamsold predicts that 2021 growth will exceed these figures, as the popularity of online (and now virtual) auctions continue to rise, propelled by Covid-19 taking traditionally in-room auctions online.

Jamie Cooke, managing director at iamsold, comments: “When the property market reopened during the first lockdown, we saw demand for auction spike instantly. There was growth across the whole category this year but no more so than online, with one of the main factors being the increased need from vendors for fast and secure transactions as an impact of lifestyle changes due to the pandemic.”

“Our Partner Agents have had record auction sales and told us that the main benefit for their business has been the more predictable and faster income payments.”

He adds: “We’ve pioneered MMoA as the modern and convenient way to buy and sell property for the last decade, and online auction really came into its own last year. More and more agents are offering it, consumers are increasingly aware of it and we’re working hard alongside our Partner Agents to dispel the historic misconceptions still associated with the method by some.”

“Last year more than ever we were seeing consumers become increasingly frustrated with the lengthy timeframe to sell and buy properties via the ‘traditional’ route, who are starting to look proactively for alternative methods like auction. Building on 2020’s demand and these positive changes, 2021 will be a big year for auction.”


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