A TWO-bedroom flat in Westcliff sold within three days despite an estate agent telling people to “wipe your feet on the way out”.
In a candid Rightmove advert, estate agents Scott & Stapleton told prospective customers the flat, on the market for £125,000, was being sold complete with mouldy walls, mounds of rubbish and “fleas to keep you company” - allegedly left by previous tenants.
Far from deterring buyers, the agent’s refreshing honesty brought a flurry of viewers and the property, which went on the market on Friday, was sold by yesterday for £15,000 over the market price - for £140,000.
Rob Kahl, manager of the Leigh estate agents was the author of the graphic description of the flat which would have sold for around £170,000 had it been in reasonable condition.
He said: “I just thought it was being sold as seen so people needed to be warned. We could have had twice as many people view it but it would have been a waste of time if they’s seen the normal estate agent blurb.”
The vendors were said to have been so upset at the state of the property they couldn’t bear to go and clear it out.
Mr Kahl added: “They don’t live locally and didn’t really want to come back down here.
“By the time we had arranged clearance we thought it best to just get it on the market with a price to reflect the condition of the property.”
The successful sale reflects a buoyant time for estate agents.
Mr Kahl said: “Its been very busy. It’s traditionally busy at this time of year after the Christmas lull but we have been very busy. Buy to let sales are seeing their last surge ahead of changes coming in in April which include a 3 per cent rise in stamp duty and an end to being able to offset mortgage interest payments against rental income for tax purposes.
“I’m glad to say the person who has bought this flat though is an owner occupier so they will be restoring it to live in.”
WHAT THE AD SAID:
WIPE your feet on the way out! Not for the faint-hearted this first-floor flat is being sold as seen, rubbish and all! Having recently just had to evict some charming (not) tenants the vendors of this property have had enough and can't even face setting foot in what used to be their sweet and charming home.
“I can't flower this one up or use my normal estate agent jargon to make this sound any better. The property is full of rubbish, there is mould on the walls and I think there may even be some fleas there to keep me company when I carry out the viewings.”
Mr Kahl goes on to reassure prospective buy-to-let viewers.
He added: “If you are interested in this property as a buy to let investment please rest assured that this is not even close to being a true reflection of a Scott & Stapleton tenant and your investment would be managed efficiently and professionally.”