Sold in just seven hours from instruction to exchange

A £1m property has been sold for the full asking price in just seven hours – the time it took from instruction to exchange.

It was sold by Auction House London which received a phone call from the seller of the property in Mill Hill at 10am last Friday, and it was sold under auction conditions to one of two interested buyers by 4.30 that afternoon.

Auctioneer Andrew Binstock said: “When the owner first got in touch, he said that he wanted us to sell the property in three days – but our next scheduled auction was still several weeks away.

“Nevertheless, I suggested that as we had a huge database of buyers, as well as a large presence online, I thought we could help.

“As an auction lot, I would have suggested the right level to take it on at would have been in the region of £850,000-£900,000.

“But as it was not being treated as an auction instruction, there was no harm in taking the vendor’s valuation as our guide.”

Auction House London was given access to look around the property at 2pm. But rather than simply going along with just one of the auction team to view it, Binstock sought and achieved permission to promote it and conduct an impromptu block viewing for any potential buyers at the same time.

He then sent an urgent newsletter out to his registered buyers for north-west London, uploaded the details to the website and all relevant portals, and spent the next three hours drumming up interest.

A dozen potential buyers went to the property, along with an Auction House London member of staff.

Binstock explained: “My employee made it very clear to all those on site that best offers would be invited as soon as the viewing was over.

“Whilst for most of the parties there, the house was not quite right or priced a little beyond their own valuation, two of the viewers were seriously interested.

“After discreet discussions with both, one of them was willing to proceed at the full £1m asking price.”

The seller’s solicitor had prepared a legal pack during the previous couple of hours, which was forwarded to the buyer’s solicitor. The buyer then went along to the boardroom of Auction House London with their solicitor to hammer home the deal.

Binstock said: “By 4pm, questions from the buyer’s solicitor had been satisfactorily answered, and within half an hour the buyer was happy and ready to put down his deposit.”

Binstock added: “Not only had the vendor achieved a sale in seven hours, but he had exchanged at the same price that he had been told by local estate agents his house was worth. No discount was necessary.

“Of course, I am not saying that we could reproduce that kind of result every time we are asked, but it does show that property auctioneers are not just about yelling numbers at people in glamorous hotel ballrooms.

“We also have the ability to find buyers at very short notice and conduct quick, professional, legally-binding sales at the very best prices when required to do so.”

In answer to questions from EYE, Binstock said he did not know why such a quick sale was required, but thought it was probably related to a purchase.

Quick transactions are a flag for money laundering, but Binstock said all the usual checks were carried out within the seven hours.

Yesterday evening, a spokesperson for Auction House London emphasised: “Auctioneers don’t just shout out figures at auctions. They can also act proactively in generating successful sales, at asking price, in incredibly short periods of time.”