Diary of an estate agent

Our agent from Clerkenwell starts the week with international clients, pulls on his blue booties — and makes sure he doesn't let the cat out
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Diary of an estate agent
© Merrily Harpur (harpur.org)


We arrive early this morning as we are all anxious to hear about our Hong Kong launch of a new residential development at Number One, Lambs Passage. Located between Barbican and Moorgate Tube stations, there are 59 apartments, perfectly placed for the City. After a successful launch in London, the news from the other side of the world is good: 24 apartments are reserved and exchanged over the course of the weekend.

The international theme continues throughout the day as sales are agreed on a stunning penthouse in Bloomsbury with a buyer from Taiwan; a onebedroom flat near St Paul's to a couple from Switzerland, and a very authentic loft apartment as a pied-à-terre to a French banker.


I get a phone call first thing today from a previous client wanting to sell her flat. It is a wonderful top-floor loft apartment with a great roof terrace. Since we already have all her details we are busy on the phones booking appointments. By lunchtime we have 14 interested viewers and decide to hold a viewing day on Friday. The client reminds us not to let her cat out of the apartment, and that everyone must take off their shoes.


Good news this morning, after many meetings we are instructed to sell 14 stunning, newly refurbished loft apartments in the heart of the City. A combination of technology with original features, they will appeal to our buyers. Built in 1771 by the East India Company, this is not only a great instruction but a "wow" landmark building.

In the afternoon we are given a final tour around a new residential development in Turnmill Street located just by Farringdon Road station. Half of the apartments are already finished, so in order not to damage the highly polished wood floor, we put on bright-blue plastic slip-ons. The apartments are beautifully finished and dressed. Once finished we head back to the office, only to realise halfway there that we're still wearing the blue slip-ons. Not the sharpest look with a smart suit.


Clerkenwell has a wonderful mix of properties, from authentic loft apartments and office conversions through to very modern flats. Today I revisit a client who bought a freehold double-fronted building in central Clerkenwell that had been empty for years, with a view to selling it.

Builders have been frantically working away for over four months and I am stunned by the transformation — an ugly duckling has become not only a stunning home but possibly the most expensive house in the area. It does not surprise me that the client has decided to keep it.


Usually a busy day of contract exchanges, and today is no exception. Four are expected to happen this afternoon, phone calls are made early in the day making sure contracts have been signed by all parties and deposit monies are with solicitors.

I volunteer to carry out the viewings for our loft apartment instruction from Tuesday, remembering once I get there that it is a third-floor walk up. By the end of the 14th viewing my legs are trembling as I realise I have just walked up the equivalent of a 36-storey building. But at least I receive four offers, the cat doesn't escape and everyone leaves wearing their own shoes.

Marco Fugaccia is manager of Hurford Salvi Carr in Clerkenwell (020 7250 1012)

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