Man! This flat’s got flower power
I check the latest property headlines first thing, and the autumn promises encouraging signs of recovery. Later in the day I receive a memory-evoking email from an old client, reminding me how we first met 18 years ago.
Unfortunately, it’s a divorce that has prompted him to get in touch and he needs to arrange a valuation. I put him in my diary for tomorrow as he has “bribed” me with a glass of vino.
London feels busier this week, with more people out and about. In the last week we have seen an increase in serious sellers instructing us to list their properties for the busy September market. This in turn leads to more enquiries, a lot of them from European buyers making the most of the euro/ sterling exchange rate. I look at the week ahead and it is pretty much full up with viewings.
I cut through to Floral Street to my valuation. This famous cobbled street is located just north of Covent Garden Piazza and my seller bought here before Apple moved in. He tells me that when Apple came the whole landscape changed, with many more stylish retailers and fashion labels arriving.
The flat is in a small, well-run, modern block and the owner has extended the lease to make sure his investment has remained at the top. We discuss figures and he lets me know when he will need to press ahead with the sale. Now for a final discussion over that glass of vino. We head to the Crusting Pipe in the Piazza which has live musical performers.
The sales team discuss current offers and interests. While transaction levels across London are much lower, we are still managing to attract the right buyers ready to move.
A colleague mentions one particular instruction which is quite high on price, but the owners need to sell quickly. Immediately, my memory kicks in — I know a man who is buying on the same block. I give him a call to see how it’s going and discover his purchase failed, so he’s on the lookout again. We arrange a viewing for tomorrow afternoon.
I’m off to Soho near the square, to value a flat where a lady has lived for 47 years. I’m not sure the decor has been touched since, as it’s very late-Sixties. Her parents were in the restaurant business with a place in Greek Street. They also ran a Soho nightclub where the likes of Bob Dylan used to hang out
Fitzrovia’s the location for a viewing at a beautiful two-bedroom apartment with a large west-facing terrace suitable for entertaining. The person looking produces a very famous children’s programme that my two-year- old daughter adores. That probably qualifies his ability to buy, all we need to do is make sure it suits them. Interestingly he viewed the flat while FaceTiming his partner, giving them a virtual tour via his mobile. All goes well and I am promised an offer early next week.
My prospective buyer from yesterday is keen on the flat we showed him. He makes a low offer initially but promises there is more in the tank. All positive signs for the market as we approach the busier autumn period when people look to complete before the Christmas break. Did I really just say that word? Christmas is closer than you think.