Britain’s best property auction houses
Property Auctions, Pre-Auction Legal Checks, Pre-Auction Conveyancing

Britain’s best property auction houses

Britain's best property auction houses Express Conveyancing

Property Auction Houses

The painfully slow business of house buying can be avoided by the increasingly popular route of snapping up a home at an auction – but the process is not for the faint-hearted. This article first appeared on the Sunday Times. We have compiled a list of the best property auction houses in Britain.

The upsides are that the process can take a month or less, you can see rival purchasers and know what they will pay. The downsides are that auctions can attract ‘problem’ homes which, say, need renovation, have sitting tenants or are hard-to-sell like flats above shops.

But auctions frequently allow canny buyers to pay lower-than-average prices so long as they do their research and stay calm in the pressure of the bidding room.

Best auctioneers for property

  1. Allsop: everything from individual flats to landlord portfolios
  2. Auction House: mostly in London, eastern England, the Midlands and the north
  3. Barnard Marcus: handling properties across the UK but auctions all in central London
  4. Barnett Ross: north London-based, selling homes requiring renovation to full blocks of apartments;
  5. Brendons Auctioneers: specialising in low-cost flats and small houses in London suburbs and commuter areas
  6. Brown & Co: East Anglia and Midlands auctioneers, specialising in rural property
  7. Countrywide: wide range of homes with auctions from Exeter to Glasgow
  8. Fox & Sons: homes and shops under the hammer in Southampton
  9. Griffiths & Charles: specialising in Worcestershire property, sometimes selling house contents too
  10. Hunters: selling homes and shops in York
  11. Martin & Pole: auctioning homes in Reading and Wokingham
  12. Michael Poole: auctioning homes in the Newcastle area
  13. Penny Cuick: small homes, flats and local shops in Birmingham suburbs
  14. Savills: usually higher-end houses, auctioned in central London or Nottingham
  15. Seel & Co: low-cost flats and houses in south Wales
  16. Sharpes: low-cost homes in Bradford, popular with buy-to-let bidders
  17. Shobrook & Co: Plymouth auctioneer known for tenanted homes, part-vacant investment properties or thoserequiring renovation
  18. Strettons: Mostly London and southern England low-cost homes
  19. Symonds & Sampson: Dorset auctioneer known for homes and building plots
  20. Wilsons Auctions: Six offices in Midlands, Wales, Scotland and Ireland, specialising in small homes and shops

Top tips for buying a house at auction

  1. Visit an auction without bidding to see if you like the experience;
  2. If you go ahead, order a catalogue for a future auction (available three weeks in advance);
  3. View a property you like – the auctioneer arranges visits for individuals or groups;
  4. Get a survey done, even if one is included in the seller’s ‘legal pack’ – the agent may do this to avoid multiple surveyors from rival bidders;
  5. Sort finances – successful bidders pay 10 per cent immediately, the rest within 28 days;
  6. Instruct a conveyancing solicitor familiar with auction purchases such as through www.express-conveyancing.co.uk;
  7. Set a personal spending limit including legal, transaction and renovation costs;
  8. Take all legal, mortgage and ID paperwork to the auction;
  9. Once bidding begins, make clear hand signals and verbal bids on your ‘lot’;
  10. Avoid being carried away in a bidding war and exceeding your limit.

What our clients say

Great value for money. Everything went smoothly and I was very pleased with the service provided
Rachel Whitfield
Rachel Whitfield
20:59 12 Oct 18
Excellent! Very responsive, and really helped to push the purchase. There were unexpected delays during the process, but Anthony really helped to reassure me that he was doing everything he could to progress the sale. Ultimately, it all worked out in the end, and I would highly recommend! I would also recommend for auction purposes.
Sean Stevens
Sean Stevens
09:14 21 May 18
Very happy customer. Understanding of our needs and recommended a really fantastic solicitor.
Jack Hearne
Jack Hearne
17:49 12 Oct 18
I have just completed the purchase of my flat with them. They were recommend by the estates agents Phillip Arnold and they were fantastic. My case was handled by Milena who was really helpful and always available on the phone. The online system is also really easy to use. If I buy or sell a property I will definitely be using them again.
Sharon Kelly
Sharon Kelly
18:27 20 Dec 17
I used this service following a recommendation. The online case tracker worked really well. I would recommend this service as it's vital in the coordination between Estate Agencies and between Solicitors. The service proved invaluable in helping progress the conveyancing work efficiently and effectively. Completed the transaction just before Christmas having instructed the Solicitors on the 4th.
Shelly Harrill
Shelly Harrill
16:30 19 Dec 17
Excellent Service. Final Price same as quoted.
A Google User
A Google User
14:26 19 Dec 18
Have used them twice. Both times completion happened in less than 4 weeks, even over Xmas! Totally amazing. They take the stress out of the whole process.
Daniel West
Daniel West
13:04 21 Dec 18
Excellent Service. Final Price same as quoted
Parsa Khamooshi
Parsa Khamooshi
15:54 21 Dec 18
Being a first time buyer they guided me smoothly through the whole process of moving into my first home. Very professional and economical.
Uday Seth
Uday Seth
12:31 24 Dec 18

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