Properties in Exeter
Properties in Exeter

EXETER Blog

Rain and Floods fail to curb Local Property Market

Posted on 22nd March 2014 in Exeter Property, Floods

The storms and floods in the early part of the year don’t seem to have curbed either residential or commercial property demand in the Exeter and local area.

With many new developments already underway and many more set to come, as eager developers snap-up new opportunities as soon as they arise – the recent “mini-boom” in the local property market looks set to continue for some months yet.

Stocks of re-sale residential property remain in short supply, as investor buyers compete with first time buyers and first-time movers for he limited number of properties available to buy – and many fresh properties to market being snapped-up and even some properties that have been on the market for longer that the sellers might have hoped for (or their agents might care to admit!) now looking to be very good value.

Looking around the city centre, the redevelopment of two former office blocks – which will see both ‘Portland House’ behind John Lewis and the former ‘Trinity House’ in Southernhay built further up into the sky- to take full advantage of their locations but limited “footprints” – are both now underway. The former providing more quality student accommodation and the latter set to compete with neighbouring Dean Clarke House for the top-end luxury apartment market. Impending sales of around 20,000 square feet of part of the City Library and a similar-size existing buildings near St Georges Market, may well see more of both, as the changing face of Exeter attracts even more life and energy to the city centre.

As you look just a little further out, the redevelopment of former Plymouth College of Art and the Deaf school off the Topsham Road will soon begin and with the fast-progressing exclusive Millbrook Retirement Village with it soon to be built “Hotel-Style” facilities and nearby “City Glade” mix of quality new homes, along with the rapidly growing developments elsewhere around the city – one might wonder “Who will buy all of these new homes?” – especially with a new town being built only just a few miles away at Cranbrook?

Well, from the number of fresh enquiries we get every day from down-sizers, re-locators, investors, growing families, second-homers and people looking to get on the property ladder for the first time ( or back-on, to start again) – it really does seem that these new developments can’t come quickly enough!

Roger Wilkinson

Property Market “mini boom”

Posted on 16th March 2014 in Exeter Property

But Agents could slow down recovery. Time to whistle-blow ‘questionable practices’?

With the recovery in the local property market gathering momentum, as both sales numbers and selling prices exceed previous recent years, the shortage of fresh properties coming to market has led to a number of local agents appearing to adopt what might at best be described as “questionable practices” and at worst seemingly contravening consumer legislation – or, as some might say“breaking the law” in their attempts to win new business.

Despite what appears to be a “mini boom” (our Open Houses in the first five weeks of this year already have attracted more viewers that the first nine weeks of last, resulting in record sales at “healthy” prices for our clients) the shortage of available stock is unusually low for the time of year and demand appears to be higher than ever. As eager buyers compete for the relatively few properties that are on the market and realistically-priced homes are receiving a great deal of attention – many

selling at appreciably more than they would have achieved even just a few months ago, it’s no surprise that enterprising agents are working hard to find more property to sell. However, unfortunately, some appear to be over-steeping the mark, reverting to practices such as door-knocking, touting, over-valuing and generally misleading potential sellers.

“The shortage of available stock is unusually low for the time of year and demand appears to be higher than ever”

The resulting effect can be to deter some sellers from entering the market and encourage others to over-inflate asking prices, which often deters buyers from offering or even viewing at all! More of this could serve to slow-down the market recovery or eventually even stagnate the market.

No such worries of the latter at present, with confidence in property high and availability of mortgages along with cash buyers at healthy levels but certainly a good time to query any such “questionable practices” if the local economy and community are to enjoy the benefits of increased sale activity in the local property market.

We are not talking about “booming” house sale prices but more sales means more people can move up or down market, potentially releasing more money into the local economy, paying for services and household goods and often releasing monies for dependent relatives, leisure, health and education etc.

Apart from the obvious unsavoury prospect of unsuspecting, property sellers being confronted on the door-step by suited gents or ladies with clip boards, pressing their unsolicited advances (We alone have had instances in recent weeks of people in their 70s and 80s being propositioned in this way) many practices such as making misleading statements or deliberately over-valuing to win business are covered by the Consumer Protection Regulations – if you come across them, feel free to contact the OFT.

Roger Wilkinson, Managing Director

Ten Most Expensive Streets in England

Posted on 29th December 2011 in Exeter Property, Expensive Property

Campden Hill Square in Holland Park, West London, has become Britain’s most desirable road with an average house price of £4.9m.

The square near Kensington Palace has topped a survey of house prices across the country by Lloyds TSB.

Previous occupants have included Prince Edward and the Duchess of Kent, playwright Harold Pinter and Lady Antonia Fraser, and Sir Paul Brierley Smith, the fashion designer.

Lady Sarah Riddell, the widow of Sir John Riddell, the 13th Baronet of Riddell, and Lord Mark Fitzalan Howard OBE have also lived on the Kensington and Chelsea street.

The tree-lined square is the most expensive of six streets within the London borough, which dominates the top 10.

Nearby Drayton Gardens was the third most expensive street, with an average house price of £4.4 million, followed by Dawson Place in nearby W2 where houses cost an average of £3.89 million.

The second most expensive street was Parkside in Merton, where average prices were £4.8 million.

“The largest concentration of expensive properties is in Kensington and Chelsea,” said Lloyds TSB economist Suren Thiru.

“This part of London has always had a glamorous reputation, attracting buyers from the business and entertainment world, and more recently the super-rich from across the world.

“The area clearly has its attractions with excellent schools, upmarket shops, proximity to the capital’s business district and impressive properties.

“Other areas in the capital have similar qualities but property prices in Kensington and Chelsea tend to outperform the rest of London.”

The priciest streets away from the capital were in the Home Counties, the study found. Properties in Leys Road in Leatherhead, Surrey, had an average price of £3.1 million – the highest outside London.

Brundenell Avenue in the glamorous celebrity favourite of Sandbanks in Dorset had an average house price of £2 million and was the most expensive street outside London and the South East.

“Outside London, the areas with the most expensive streets are generally located well away from central areas, where buyers are typically attracted by larger properties and more green space,” Mr Thiru added.

Outside southern England, the most expensive street was Withinlee Road in Prestbury, near Macclesfield, Cheshire – where the average house price was £1,649,000.

Withinlee Road, highlighted by the study for being favoured by footballers, was followed by Macclesfield Road in Alderley Edge, where houses typically cost £1.3 million.

The most expensive streets in Yorkshire and the Humber were all located in the area that makes up the “golden triangle” between Harrogate, Wetherby and north Leeds.

The region’s most expensive street was Bracken Park in Scarcroft in Leeds with an average price of £934,000, followed by Wigton Lane in Leeds (£840,000) and Orchard Close in York (£800,000).

The most expensive street in Wales was Druidstone Road on the outskirts of Cardiff with an average house price tag of £685,000.

It would be interesting to understand the ten most expensive streets in Exeter?

Wilkinson Grant Win at EAE 2011

Posted on 20th December 2011 in Exeter Property

Wilkinson Grant & Co Ltd awarded at The Estate Agency of the Year Awards 2011

Wilkinson Grant & Co were awarded Gold for Best Small Estate Agency in the South West and Silver for Best Estate Agency Marketing in the UK at The Estate Agency of the Year Awards in association with The Sunday Times and The Times.

On Thursday 8th December, over 500 leading estate agents and conveyancing lawyers descended upon The Lancaster London Hotel opposite Hyde Park for The Estate Agency of The Year Awards ceremony. The winners received their awards from celebrity guest, Ben Fogle who charmed the audience with some inspiring tales of his adventures.

The awards ceremony was the culminating event of a rigorous and thorough judging process carried out over a four month period by a panel of industry experts who assessed initial entry submissions before conducting an extensive review of the entrants which included hundreds of telephone interviews and mystery shopping exercises. The whole judging process was overseen by The Property Ombudsman; Christopher Hamer.

For the past nine years, the awards have become increasingly competitive with the standard of entries rising ever higher. These awards are firmly established as the most sought-after and difficult to win in estate agency. Over 5,000 offices were represented this year, but only the very best of the best were crowned as winners.

Wilkinson Grant & Co, winners of the Best Small Estate Agency and runner up for Best Marketing were delighted to receive the award. Roger Wilkinson commented: “We are delighted to be acknowledged as the best Small Estate Agency in the whole of the South West of England and shortlisted for the best in the UK. Our hardworking team have achieved tremendous success in what has been a very challenging year and to be recognised at a national level for our marketing – over and above large, corporate agencies who no doubt spend hundreds of thousands of pounds, is incredible. Both awards should give confidence, to both current client and anyone looking to sell in 2012, that Wilkinson Grant & Co are the best agency to achieve the best results”.

A website listing all the winning companies with comments from the judges as to why they won can be found at www.estateagencyoftheyear.com

Peter Knight, Chairman of the event organisers Estate Agency Events commented “At a time when the property market throughout much of the UK continues to struggle, choosing the right estate agent has never been more pertinent. The winners of these awards represent the top 10% of an industry where standards are hugely variable. Consumers should have confidence that a firm displaying a winner’s medal from these awards are a cut above the rest.”

Interserve has won a £19.4m contract to build a medical research facility in Exeter.

Posted on 7th December 2011 in Exeter Property

The Research, Innovation, Learning and Development (RILD) Centre is being built for joint clients the Royal Devon & Exeter NHS Foundation Trust, Peninsula College of Medicine & Dentistry  and the University of Exeter. Work will begin on site in April 2012.

The new RILD Centre at Wonford will take the form of a single new building, which will be shared by the three clients for education and training purposes. The project has also been awarded a £4.75m grant from the Wellcome Trust and the Wolfson Foundation as part of their investment in the UK scientific infrastructure. The centre will house the following functions:

The new four-storey building, designed by Devereux Architects, will be linked at both ground and first floor levels to the existing Peninsula College of Dentistry & Medicine.

Completion is scheduled for the end of October 2013.

The contract was awarded under the NHS ProCure21+ procurement framework. Interserve has been appointed on 15 projects for nine NHS Trusts since the procurement framework began operating in its new form in 2010. The company attributes much of its success under ProCure21+ to its collaborative approach to working with clients and supply chains. As director Richard Ellis puts it: “Interserve is genuinely placed to provide its NHS clients with support across the whole spectrum of the NHS property portfolio, with its unique mix of health, property and construction professionals, providing strategic planning, advice, design and construction of new facilities through to small scale maintenance programmes.”

Exeter Property and Wilkinson Grant

Posted on 16th October 2011 in Exeter Property

Exeter Property aim’s to be Exeter’s first local property portal for buying, renting or selling. The site will be a one stop site for all your property needs in Exeter and will eventually list all the local independent estate agents and list all properties on the market.

Wilkinson Grant are the first agent to get involved and later in the week all their properties will be listed to view.

We’re updating all our pages that contain local information and links to local schools and relevant ofsted reports.

Follow us on Facebook for the latest news www.facebook.com/exeterproperty for live information when a property goes on the market.