Diary of an estate agent:Fitzrovia

A swish new development in Tottenham Court Road shows off cutting-edge technology and noisy students are causing a spot of bother...

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Hurrying to a meeting first thing with a developer who has a penthouse for sale in Mayfair, I think how much I love the spring sunshine. 

The apartment has great natural light and has been expertly designed to offer stylish modern living. It’s a cool £4.65 million, which by Mayfair standards and for this level of design and finish offers great value. 

I am sure the sales team will have plenty of interest for this, even though the stamp duty on such places these days is rather high. 

It reminds me of a few weeks ago when we were all rushing around like mad trying to get second-home purchases over the line before the April 1 deadline for higher stamp duty. Our lawyers were burning the midnight oil and racing all over town getting contracts signed — one even got signed at the Eurostar terminal. Now we’ll have to wait and see how the market reacts to the changes. 

Staff appraisals are on my agenda this afternoon. This is my chance to have one-to-ones with the team, to make sure everyone is motivated so they continue their great work. 

A man who bought a flat from me seven years ago rings in. We haven’t been in touch for a while but we quickly catch up. He wants advice, as he is struggling with noise from the tenants above him. 

As we are the agents for that block he asks if the tenants are ours, which on this occasion they are not. However, it turns out that they are the tenants of someone I know, so I offer to make a call to see if we can help. 

We quickly discover that there are students above him walking around on their wooden floors at silly o’clock in the morning. The landlord agrees to look into it. 

This afternoon, it’s off to our latest new-homes development, Artisan, which is in Tottenham Court Road and Goodge Street. I am being interviewed by The Mayfair Magazine about Fitzrovia and what has changed there in the past 18 years.

Racking my brains to go that far back, I surprise myself with what I can recall. Property prices back then were certainly different. The interview takes place in one of the three penthouse apartments which feature cutting-edge audiovisual technology, allowing the owner to control the lighting via a picture of the room on a tablet device. 

A simple tap on the image of the lamp turns it on and another tap turns it back off again. Amazing. 

Lunch with a charity trust. This client is a great character and I really enjoy the lunches we have every few months. He acquires buildings on the trust’s behalf and refurbishes them, sometimes selling them on or keeping them for rental income. He explains the latest news and what they are looking at and asks my advice on values and demand. 

We mostly meet at the same place, Honey & Co in Warren Street. It is small and quite lively, and the Middle Eastern food is to die for. 

First job today is valuing a flat just off Bedford Square for probate. Not that they want to sell, but as it’s a very old client of ours I am going along to provide free advice and have a coffee with a great guy who sadly lost his wife. 

The apartment is amazing, which is to be expected as the owner is an architect. It even has a library with a double-height vaulted ceiling. Later in the day we show the El Salvador ambassador around an office space in a building we manage near Bloomsbury Square. 

The charming Georgian building has a range of period features and will make a fantastic new home for the embassy. The ambassador falls in love with the property and its views across to the square and is immediately on the phone to her government to agree the terms. 

The pubs are bustling as I stroll back to the office in Charlotte Street. I think I could be persuaded to finish the week with a cold beer with the team.

  • Jonathan Hudson is founder of estate agent Hudsons in Charlotte Street, W1 (020 7323 2277).

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