Using a Buying Agent To Access Off-Market Properties


The term "off-market" refers to properties that are not visible on the Internet or any other media. And surprisingly to some, significant numbers of the most desirable and prestigious properties are sold off-market.

Instead of being advertised in estate agents’ windows or via online property portals, off-market properties — and their price tags — are being revealed discreetly behind closed doors, to only a handful of property professionals and the closest contacts of the owners.

Such properties are typically passed over by the vendor into the care of an estate agent, with the strict instruction that buyers are to be located through private networking rather than mass marketing and advertising.

An increasing number of properties are being sold off-market

Over the last 10 years there has been a significant increase in the number of properties being sold off-market in the UK, mostly among high-value homes.

The off-market share in £1million plus sales across the UK rose, from 14% in 2014 to 20% in 2016. The figures also show private sales are overwhelmingly focused on the top end of the market: only 0.9% of London sales under £500,000 were conducted off-market in the past 12 months, compared with 27% of those worth £2million or more.

In the last 2 years, 30% of home purchases between £1.5million and £2million were off market. This increases to 60% for purchases between £3 million and £5million and 80% above £5million.

In 2019 one in four wealthy homeowners in London was selling their property away from the public glare, due to concerns about the uncertainty of a contracting market. A sharp rise in the proportion of so-called “off-market” sales was registered by several prime central London estate agents which found they accounted for 25% of £1M+ sales in London so far this year, up from 14% in the previous year.

How to find off-market properties?

The off-market property transaction world is essentially a largely invisible subset of the main property marketplace. The implications of that are consequently very clear: unless you know how to access the off-market property domain, you may simply never see these properties!

One of the most valuable services good property finders can offer to buyers is that associated with identifying and accessing off-market properties. Experienced buying agents will know how to tap into this market and bring appropriate qualifying properties to your attention.

Potential issues faced by buyers can be avoided if you appoint an experienced property finder/buying agent who is able to move immediately on things such as initial viewings and clarifying aspects of the property’s specification or basis of sale.

Why use a buying agent? And what to expect from a buying agent?

  • Saving time and money
  • Professional and personal approach
  • Property market knowledge
  • Access to both on and off-market properties
  • Transparency and flexibility
  • Impartial support

Many property buyers use a buying agent because they want to hand over the time-consuming and often fruitless process of searching for a property on their own.

“By using a buying agent, your bid is also likely to be favoured over competing bids as both estate agents and vendors value the involvement of a professional buying agent and have subsequently greater confidence the deal will reach successful completion.” says Jerome Lartaud, Co-Founder and Director of Domus Holmes Property Finder.

“Our clients tell us they value that we can be emotionally detached when negotiating their property purchase. It is all too easy to fall in love with a property and pay too much. Our clients consequently use us to bring a research-based view about what a property is worth” he adds.

As a potential off-market purchaser, your options to directly access off-market properties may be very limited. It is therefore worth appointing an experienced buying agent to both access this marketplace and to protect your interests within it.

For a free, no obligation consultation and discussion about your property search, please contact Jerome and Claire on:

T: +44 (0) 117 973 3683

M: +44 (0) 7734 115 098

E: info@domusholmes.co.uk

W: www.domusholmes.co.uk

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