Distressed and receivership properties are a theme of current sales - and nowhere more so than across the Irish Sea.
Savills Ireland has announced that on September 29 it will hold what it claims will be the largest property auction Ireland has seen in a long while. Clients include banks, receivers and private sellers.
The mix of property on offer will be mainly residential with some retail and office. The focus will be largely on city properties - from south county Dublin trophy homes to city centre penthouses.
Up to half the properties will appeal to first-time buyers and will include one- and two-bedroom apartments as well as three- and four-bedroom semi-detached homes.
"I talk to people on a daily basis about including property in the auction and there is a lot of interest," says Ronan O'Driscoll, director of residential at Savills. "While reserves are usually relatively low, these auctions help to set a property price floor and interest from potential buyers is significant."
Another firm that sees Ireland as a strong market is Allsop. It has joined forces with Space, a Dublin property, to market Irish properties for sale by auction with disclosed maximum reserve prices.
Back in the UK, Auction House London achieved a success of 82 per cent at its latest sale (22 lots sold, of 27 offered) and raised more than £4.5 million from a busy room. "It was our biggest auction to date," says AHL's Andrew Binstock. "With 89 per cent and 82 per cent in our last two auctions, our stats are phenomenal for 2011 so far."
Among star lots, a first-floor two-bedroom flat in Rodney Court, Maida Vale, W9, sold for £652,000 against a guide price of £600,000. The 1,200-sq ft flat has 54 years left on its long lease.
A vacant two-bedroom lower ground floor flat on Gloucester Avenue, Primrose Hill, NW1 with 140 years left on the long lease went for £555,000 against a guide price of £500,000. A refurbishment proposition, the property has a private rear garden.
The third star in the sale was 48 Brownlow Road, Bounds Green, N11. The two-bedroom ground floor flat sold for £231,000 against a guide price of £195,000.
Meanwhile, Cushman & Wakefield held its last auction in May before its team, led by John Townsend, moved to CB Richard Ellis. There were 31 lots in the catalogue and half of them sold in the room. Among its better selling lots, 50 High Street, Weston-super-Mare went for £1.036 million. Opposite Marks & Spencer and adjacent to Boots, the property is let to Mountain Warehouse on a new 15-year lease from February 2011 at £70,000 a year.