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Property market report: Devon, Cornwall, Surrey and Wiltshire

Each month we visit three agents across the country to discover what is happening in their local market. This month we meet members of The Guild of Property Professionals in Devon and Cornwall, Surrey and Wiltshire.

The Negotiator

Chris Mervyn - Mansbridge Balment - imageChris Mervyn, Marketing Director
Mansbridge Balment

This month, we have seen that what is working time and again is good old-fashioned estate agency. The key has been to manage clients’ moves in a structured and considered way because of the lack of stock and a nervousness to commit to selling.

Devon & Cornall property exterior image

STATS: Average Sale Price: £276,328 Average Commission: 1.3% Sale agreed price against asking price: 98%

Even when there are no properties of interest for them to purchase, we continue to reassure vendors that we will be able to obtain the right buyer who will fit in with their timescales.

We are fortunate at Mansbridge Balment to get the opportunity to appraise a high number of properties – right across every build type and price range. This means that it’s often a case that the right property for the vendor to buy has already been seen and it’s simply a ‘phone call to obtain that viewing. As one of the biggest selling agents in Plymouth we’ve already done this countless times this year and I see this ‘chain-building’ skill as our key to further success in 2019.

Sold prices have seen little, if any, growth in recent months, so with stock being a little harder to find, we have seen advertised prices a little higher, as homeowners and some estate agents believe that everything is more expensive than a year ago. Savvier agents like ourselves and more informed buyers will typically see through this as sold prices stay fairly level.

A tougher market (where stock and prices fail to go up substantially) means that trust will be given to those agents who have knowledge and expertise – and a realistic approach to selling / moving their clients. It’s not about getting a high number of viewers, it’s about getting the right viewer and I’d much rather over deliver and under promise, than tell a vendor what I think they want to hear.

Pressure on fees is still an ever-present feature of business life. Whilst initially ‘low-fee agents’ have scared some long-established estate agents (who should know better) into reducing fees, the pressure across the city now comes from new build schemes.

With many new home builders offering one per cent or less on a multi-agency ‘winner takes all’ basis on an ‘easy move’ or ‘part exchange’. This has lowered fees for even the strongest brands making it even more important to sell these higher volume offerings… which we, of course, have been doing.

Property: A typical Victorian end of terrace house which sold in October at £250,000.


Andrew Lodge imageAndrew Lodge, Managing Director
Andrew Lodge Estate Agents

Prices in Farnham and the surrounding villages have been fairly stable and 2018 is proving to be more cautious than 2017, because of the uncertainty surrounding the Brexit negotiations. We are still bringing property to market and securing sales, generally in the £500,000 to £1,500,000 price range.

Surrey property image

STATS: Average sale: £638,778 Average number of instructions per month: 14 Average number of viewings per month: 233


There is real demand for family homes in Farnham, located near to the fantastic schools we have in the area. We deal with many families who are keen to relocate to Farnham from London. We also look after Farnham residents who are keen to downsize but remain near to the town. Interest rates remain low and we are finding that fixed rate mortgages are proving popular.

In Farnham and the surrounding areas there are many high street and online only estate agents so there is high competition to win instructions. Due to the caution surrounding Brexit, agents must be able to gain client confidence to secure new instructions and it is vital to have a proven track record in achieving successful sales in an uncertain market. For example, according to Rightmove we are consistently shown to be performing as one of the top three local agents for sales agreed in the GU9 and GU10 postcodes when viewing figures from 1st May 2018 through to 1st November 2018.

We have recently won awards including the Gold Award for Customer Service along with the Special Award for gaining 100 per cent in Obtaining Assistance Service Excellence in the Farnham Customer Service Awards 2018. We also received the Gold Award for Farnham from the British Property Awards 2018.

At Andrew Lodge our clients require expert knowledge of the local property market, honest valuations, professional marketing, an outstanding customer service and a dedicated point of contact. Trust is key, and we always emphasise that we are Farnham’s only member of The Guild of Property Professionals – highlighting that we are reputable, experienced agents who are audited to ensure we observe best practice.

Once we are instructed to market a property, we maximise promotional opportunities and keep our clients well informed. We are always investigating the latest marketing opportunities and invest in the very best promotional tools to get our properties seen by the right people.

Property: Old Tile House, Rushmoor in Surrey, £1,195,00.


Matthew Boatwright imageMatthew Boatwright MNAEA MARLA GA, Managing Director
Boatwrights Estate Agents

Boatwrights is delighted to report its best ever year in their Tisbury Office since opening their doors in 2015. The number of sales agreed in the Tisbury area proves the market is still strong in this part of rural Wiltshire.

Wiltshire property image

STATS: Average Asking Price achieved: 97.8% (YTD across all offices) Average Asking Rent achieved: 99.5% (YTD across all offices) 72% of 2018 instructions under offer within 8 weeks


Boatwrights in Tisbury has seen a steady increase in the number of applicants looking for property, which is very encouraging for those looking to sell their homes. Boatwrights is proving why their experience and local knowledge matters when it comes to selling and finding suitable properties for people, and why more and more buyers and vendors are putting their trust in the professional service that it is offering. Managing Director Matthew Boatwright said, “Boatwrights has just gone through a re-brand and coupled with its good reputation for being a friendly and professional agent, people are now recognising that we are the local agent to go to”.

Once again, Tisbury has been recommended as one of the ‘Best Places to Live’ by the national press, and the popularity of this delightful Wiltshire village continues to grow with no sign of it waning. Any property coming to the market in or around Tisbury can be assured of interest; such is the popularity of the place. Demand is outstripping supply, with MD Matthew Boatwright and his team seeing a rise in the number of applicants looking to buy, with top end of the market properties especially sought after.

Following a recent rebrand, Boatwrights has offices in Tisbury, Shaftesbury, Amesbury and Salisbury and covering all the villages and rural areas in between. Experienced in finding charming rural property, the team at Boatwrights are highly motivated, friendly and professional.

Tisbury has become a very up-and-coming place, with the national press describing it as one of the ‘Best Places to Live 2018’. Not only is it set in the beautiful Nadder Valley, it’s the perfect rural retreat for London folk, a great place to downsize for early retirees and it’s ideal for families wanting the outdoor lifestyle and good schools. It’s therefore no surprise, that property is very sought after and selling fast.

Property: Abbey Walk – Detached house refurbished to an incredible standard. £625,000.

December 24, 2018

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