Agents are reporting the prime central London (PCL) market is returning to life, with a suggestion that gazumping is back.
Buying agent Camilla Dell, managing partner of Black Brick, said properites in the prime central London area are now selling fast and often at over asking price.
She said: “In the first quarter of 2017, we have seen activity in the prime London residential market pick-up significantly, particularly at the upper end, which has been subdued for some time. We are also seeing a return of competitive bidding across the spectrum, particularly on property that is priced correctly and in line with the current market.”
She cited one example of a flat in Queen’s Park which came on the market for £750,000 and sold within four days at £785,000, after attracting four separate offers.
Dell also reports one case where she narrowly avoided her client getting gazumped.
She said: “Not only is some property attracting competition, but we have also seen a return of gazumping. We recently secured a flat in Canary Wharf for a client at £1.48m, our initial offer of £1.44m was accepted but we were gazumped by another buyer who offered £1.5m. Luckily, we managed to re-agree the sale at the original asking price as our client was a cash buyer.”
Estate agents on the sales side have also reported rising appetite from purchasers – but not gazumping.
Miles Meacock, head of Strutt & Parker Notting Hill, said: “If anything, the return of this scenario is an explicit indication of a market which is beginning to accelerate, in timely conjunction with the spring. We have seen a rise in appetite from purchasers, which has attracted, in some case, offers from multiple parties.
“As many buyers have been sitting on the fence for such a long time, some feel compelled to pounce on a property, even if they come to the table after terms have been agreed and feel justified to flex their muscles.”
Jonathan Inglis, head of Strutt & Parker Chelsea, added: “Over the past fortnight, our office has been involved with three properties which have gone to best and final bids – but no gazumping yet.”