The week starts off with a phone call from a buying agent who has a new client in his thirties wanting to find the ultimate party pad. The only brief is that he wants the wow factor.
I immediately start scanning through our selection to pick out the best options, and keep an eye out for properties with floor-to-ceiling windows, giant roof terraces, state-of-the-art kitchens and in-built media/cinema rooms.
Being in the West End, we have plenty of good-quality boutique developments to show him, so we book in a viewing for Wednesday and I start planning a tour of our wow-factor homes.
We receive an email in the early hours from a buyer in Sydney.
They are looking to relocate to the UK and have put in an offer on a two-bedroom apartment with 12ft-high ceilings and an impressive view overlooking Soho Square.
Fortunately, the property is still available and the offer shouldn’t be too far off being agreed.
I get to work in negotiating the terms with the sellers and in the meantime, I recommend a solicitor to use who I know will give them the best possible service, to ensure they can complete in the next few weeks. Shortly after, I receive a call back from the sellers accepting the offer.
It’s an early start today as I meet my potential party pad buyer. I have arranged a morning tour of all the finest properties we have available, and he soon appreciates the quality of them all. This makes reaching a decision quite difficult, but I assure him that this could all be due to change. Future planning constraints for office-to-residential conversions in the West End may mean there will be a shortage of property in this area in years to come.
We visit an amazing apartment converted within a famous old art school, just down the road from the new Crossrail station at Tottenham Court Road. Needless to say the buyer is impressed. I leave him to reflect on the properties seen, and he tells me to expect a call in the morning — without fail.
Last night, we entertained buyers at a wine-tasting network event hosted in one of our new development marketing suites.
This is a great way to catch up with old buyers and to update them on what is going on in the market. Despite a slow start last year, we surpassed expectations and sold more properties in every price bracket than in the previous year.
I make a few contacts which could lead to new business, so I’m delighted with the evening’s work, not to mention that I now feel I am as qualified as any top-class sommelier when it comes to knowing a good vintage.
I receive an offer from yesterday’s viewing, which means I have plenty to do before meeting a buy-to-let investor in Bloomsbury. She bought last year and was so amazed by the yield achieved, she wants to buy another.
Our Friday mornings are spent reporting to our clients on the week’s activities. It’s been a busy week for the office and most of our clients are delighted. The task now is to make sure the solicitors are on track with our deals. Given that we have recommended solicitors, we are comfortable that everything is in safe hands.
After some negotiations, we agree on an offer from my party-loving buyer for the converted art school apartment near the new Crossrail station. He is delighted with the flat and promises to send me an invitation to his housewarming bash.
- Ian Parsons is a negotiator with CBRE in the West End (020 7420 3050).