On 15th March, almost £4.2m-worth of sales were achieved across 21 lots at Cheffins first property auction of the year. The sale saw the highest level of pre-event interest ever recorded with 600 legal packs downloaded and over 200 buyers in attendance. The maximum prices paid were for commercial properties with solid investment incomes throughout the Eastern region.
The star lot of the day was a freehold mixed-use building in Biggleswade which achieved £1,055,000 against a guide of £900,000, making it the record hammer price ever recorded at a Cheffins property auction. Generating an annual income of £50,000 from established tenants, the property saw competitive bidding within the room, eventually selling to a local investor. Similarly, a mixed-use building on Ramsey High Street in Cambridgeshire sold for £208,000 against a guide price of £140,000. The property also offered a solid investment and currently generates a yearly rent of £19,500.
The much anticipated Keith Leonard Estate also saw competitive bidding. Consisting of seven lots, Mr Leonard’s legacy comprised of two houses and a large agricultural barn, alongside over 90 acres of both arable and garden land and represented one of the few traditional fenland estates to still be in existence. With land in Cambridgeshire at a premium, the Estate generated a total of over £1.25m with the highest price being for a large detached house needing full renovation on the outskirts of Soham which sold for £242,000 against a guide of £160,000.
Over £1m-worth of land was sold in total across 12 lots. Including both arable and garden land, the stellar lot in this section was one acre of grazing land in Reach, Cambridgeshire which achieved £16,000. In a close second was 8.65 acres of pasture land at Worlington near Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk which made £112,000, representing nearly £13,000 per acre.
Ian Kitson, Director, Cheffins, comments:
“Investment properties offering guaranteed yields really set the room alight in our first sale of the year. With competitive bidding from both local and national buyers, the record price made at Biggleswade goes to show how auction really is the best forum to generate the most interest for these popular mixed-use properties. With guaranteed rental incomes, the investment properties within the sale were snapped up by local buyers who bid against investors from all over the UK. This is reflective of the increasing desirability of the region’s smaller towns which are seeing investment throughout both commercial and residential properties, especially as returns on wider investment types remain fragile. As prices are continuing to rise across all property types in the region, we are expecting to see ongoing inward investment with mixed-use offerings continue to sell at premium prices.”
“Land also sold well with the best lots achieving well over £10,000 per acre. With pressure across East Anglia on land for development, prices are remaining strong for both agricultural and garden land. Whilst post-Brexit discussions brought a level of uncertainty to the farming industry during 2016, the results from the sale will bring some confidence to landowners with both large and small parcels seeing competitive bidding. As the new agricultural policy begins to take shape, it will be interesting to see how many agricultural land lots we see coming to auction over the coming months, but these prices do give some encouragement for 2017.”
Residential properties saw strong prices with a three storey, four bedroom townhouse in central Cambridge selling for £430,000 and a thatched cottage in Lawshall, Suffolk selling for £190,000. Similarly, an historic 17th Century cottage with an acre of moated grounds in Cockfield, near Bury St Edmunds sold for £275,000 off of a guide price of £220,000.
Cheffins sold a total of £11,157,700 worth of property in 2016.
The next property auction at Cheffins will be on the 21st June for more information please contact Ian Kitson or call Ian on 01223 271942.