ACUITUS March Auction raises £22.2m

The second Acuitus multi-asset auction of 2021 raised £22.2m with a success rate of 86%.

The largest lot sold under the hammer was £3.225m for a freehold retail investment with residential development potential in St Ann’s Road, Harrow, London. It produces a current annual rent of £48,000 and was sold at a net initial yield of 1.4% - reflecting the re-letting potential of the retail units and the residential development potential of the remainder.

Acuitus Chairman and auctioneer, Richard Auterac, commented: “This sale featured a number of lots with development potential and these are attracting experienced investors who are hungry for active asset management. This is notable as it continues a trend that we first identified in July 2020. It could herald the start of a new development cycle in the non-institutional sector”.

Amongst the lots which sold prior to the sale was a substantial office and industrial investment property with residential redevelopment potential at Maldon in Essex. Prior to the sale, the seller had commissioned an indicative scheme showing a development of 32 flats and 19 houses. The existing investment produces current annual rental income of £449,456 and sold above its guide price of £5m to £5.25m.

Investment Director, John Mehtab commented: “We were very pleased with the result as it was acquired by a major investor following a short but intense marketing campaign”.

Another potential development site, this time in Lydney, Gloucestershire sold for £885,000 at significantly above its sale price. The 4.4-acre site is located at the junction of Lydney Park Boulevard and the A48. Acuitus was selling for Administrators, Moorfields.

Elsewhere in the sale, a freehold medical investment in Byker, Newcastle upon Tyne, sold for £1.05m. It is let to an NHS Trust until 2039 with tenant breaks in 2024 and 5 yearly thereafter and generates a current annual income of £90,000.

Director, Charlie Powter commented: “As you would expect, there is strong investor interest in the healthcare sector at the moment. Demand is exceeding supply”.

Demand in the “alternative property” sector also remains healthy with a builders yard and trade counter investment in Barnsley let to Travis Perkins selling prior to auction to show a yield to the purchaser of 5.5%. The guide price was £850,000.

Four shops listed on behalf of Deloitte as Administrators for Arcadia in Doncaster, Aberdare, Dover, and Oldham all sold.

Peter Mayo, Investment Director commented: “We believe that these are some of the first assets that have been offered in the open market since the administration was announced and the fastest to have sold. What is significant is that there is a depth of interest to breathe new life into these stores”.   

Director, David Margolis commented: “This auction demonstrated a continued strengthening of developer and investor demand. We expect this to continue as life becomes more normalised during the year and the continued Government financial support for the economy takes effect”.

The next Acuitus livestream auction will take place on May 5th and will provide the flexibility of online, telephone and proxy bidding.