Russell-Cooke’s real estate team advised on the sale of a portfolio of properties at a Savills Auction in Mayfair on Tuesday 13 February.

The total raised on the day was £51 million - Savill’s highest since September 2017. The highest selling property in the auction went to our clients, whose mansion block in Queenstown Road, Battersea sold for £3.27 million against an initial guide of £2.3 million.

Christopher Coleman-Smith of Savills commented “that sort of property doesn’t come up often”. The clients were advised against accepting a number of pre-auction offers and the portfolio went on to achieve well over those offers on the day.

The Russell-Cooke team was led by real estate partner, Arnold Isaacson, assisted by associate, Sam Thorne.

Falling house prices

For years, house prices in London have been characterised by steady growth. However, recent figures released by Acadata tell a new and alarming story for property owners.

The data firm stated that London house prices dropped 4.3% in the year to January, the biggest fall since August 2009. That echoes every other major index, with RICS and Nationwide also reporting price falls in recent months.

The auction process provides clients that have experienced slow interest in a stagnant selling market with a competitive alternative.

Fall of the hammer

The current climate certainly did not deter bidders at the auction. Investors brought in a total of £51 million with a sale success rate of 66%.

On the day, our clients’ entire portfolio - bar one property - was sold, and this included the highest selling property of the day which reached £970,000 above the asking price. The one property that did not reach its reserve has generated substantial interest and is expected to sell soon afterwards.   

Behind the scenes

We advised the clients on a number of issues, ranging from the preparation of the legal pack to effective litigation, advice on the latter being provided by Mark Fletcher of our commercial litigation team.

As well as acting for sellers, our real estate team also advise on purchasing at auction. Partner Arnold Isaacson recently spoke at a property investor event on what a purchaser needs to consider before putting in a bid and the role a good solicitor plays in ensuring auction success.