Diary of an estate agent: a brilliant start to 2014 in Covent Garden

Fishy excuse for a day off work but sales are going swimmingly.
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The day starts with conversations about who managed to stick to “dry January” over the weekend — most of us, surprisingly. Then it’s straight into our usual 9am meeting. We go over the three deals agreed last Friday, and make sure the buyers and vendors are happy. The interesting link between all three deals is that none of the properties were even advertised on our website, which is a sure sign that the market is heating up with keen buyers. I then head out to value three apartments in Fitzrovia. At the end of the day I set off for my Monday run home — my new year resolution.
Our firm is part of CBRE property consultants, and yesterday we had eleven fresh enquiries from our new CBRE Residential website. I ensure all potential buyers have been spoken to and are booked in to visit the properties they are interested in viewing. Later, the whole team visits a new development of three finished show flats overlooking a garden square in Marylebone. This is going to be a popular scheme. I get back to the office to find we have had an offer on a fantastic flat in Bedfordbury, and another on a flat in Fitzrovia. The week’s shaping up brilliantly.
At our meeting we discuss how sales are increasing on developments that have not even been launched or appeared on our website yet. This highlights how crucial it is for agents to stay in close communication with purchasers, to keep them aware of what is available off-plan so that they don’t miss out. After the meeting I speak with a buyer who saw a property through us before Christmas and wanted a second viewing, but in that time the vendor decided to take it off the market. I contact the vendor and luckily he agrees we can come back in, so it’s crucial this viewing goes well. I also have a great valuation on a fantastic flat in Soho Square — which we sold in the first place, so I know it’s great.
Today one of my negotiators is off work after she ate a “dodgy prawn” last night. The dodgy prawn excuse is a running joke in the office, as it has been used when someone has had a few too many drinks the night before. However, on this occasion I actually saw pictures of the offending prawns — before they were consumed, not afterwards — which the negotiator’s boyfriend had lovingly prepared. It could be his last attempt at a romantic meal. Later in the morning I go to meet the vendor of the Soho Square property we saw yesterday, and he agrees to market it with us — success. The same client also invites me to see his penthouse, for which I happen to have a buyer in mind. I love the fact that one deal often leads to another in this job.
My second viewing from Wednesday is fruitful, as the buyer offers on the property, and it is immediately accepted. Then some exciting news. A buyer with a £100 million budget is interested in all of the units in the new development in Marylebone — this really would be an amazing start to 2014. I go to a valuation in Covent Garden with a woman who has lived in the area for 47 years, and relays some great stories about how it has changed. That’s the great thing about London, it is always changing and there is always something new on the horizon. As for this evening, no one seems too keen to go to the gym — it is Friday, after all. 
  • Shaun Macnamara is sales manager at EA Shaw in Bow Street, Covent Garden (020 7420 3087).

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