Adding value, warts and all

“This is the worst flat I have seen in a long time.” It doesn’t sound like a complement, does it? And, in a world where we’re used to properties being described in glowing terms, it certainly stood out from the crowd.

This surprising property description came from Marsh & Parsons, which recently exchanged contracts on a flat in Marylebone for nearly 20% more than the asking price. David Ruddock, sales manager of the Marylebone office (apparently adopting the ‘Roy Brooks’ method of marketing), described the property, as “the worst apartment in a wonderful building,” going on to say that “The old adage applies: the best investment is the worst property on the street.”

“The worst apartment in a wonderfull building”
The 3rd floor mansion flat was completely unmodernised.

Twitter lit up when Peter Rollings, Chief Executive of Marsh & Parsons, tweeted about this unusual marketing initiative, with one or two people commenting that they would fire their estate agent if they described their house that way. But perhaps this can give us all a lesson in not taking the sales descriptions of our homes too personally; potential buyers were excited by the possibility of the flat and there were over 40 viewings in the first two weeks.

Realising that the property, which was marketed at £1.6 million, was likely to sell for more than the asking price Marsh & Parsons asked for ‘best and final offers’ the following week and agreed a sale for almost 20% above the asking price. The strategy had paid off, in the words of Peter Rollings: “It’s not just our job to sell the property, it’s our job to sell it for more than anybody else can.”

Written by Deborah Churchill
Friday 22nd November 2013