Anissa Cantell tells the story behind one of her most impressive vendors.
We have just completed on the most amazing house, not because of the price or its
stunning condition, but because of its owner. Ann is 105-yrs-old, a stoic soul who
lived independently in the house until earlier this year. Her cleaner who passed me
another set of keys this week is 83-yrs-old – the energy and spirit of these women put
me to shame.
I had seen Anne passing our office regularly since we opened 6 years ago and the
local community were all in admiration of her independent spirit. A few months ago I
was lucky enough to be invited to her home, Ann had decided that she may sell. It is
an absolutely fascinating property, with her history stamped all over it but what I
found most interesting were the notes. There was a note on the boiler that
designated its age and the last service, one that explained what switch operated
which light and notes on keys and how to work the radiators etc. etc. What I realised
was that these notes where not for Ann, she is as sharp as tacks, they were for us.
In leaving us these notes we could better explain the house to potential buyers and
no one was left in the dark, so to speak.
There were multiple bids on the house and as part of one party's offer they said that
they would call it Ann’s cottage. Ann was very pleased at this suggestion but she
was more concerned that they could they be relied upon to complete on the
We chose our buyers as carefully as we could, I imagine that younger agents and
perhaps the selling public could perceive that having multiple bids on a property is
fabulous. But the property can only sell to one buyer, the agent is left to console the
losing parties and then we have to trust that our recommended buyer is as good as
we think. It can be a difficult decision and whilst we present our vendors with as much
relevant information as we can, we also favour the buyer we instinctively trust.
We learnt early on in our careers that the buyer who is taken out of their comfort
zone with the price they are asked to pay, rarely completes the deal. The national
average of deals that fall away during the conveyancing process is circa 33% – we
only have a handful, perhaps we are more attuned to the buying psyche. If a buyer is
placed in a sealed bid scenario and this is not well managed by the agent, the
pressure this puts on buyers (experienced or not) can be immense. The perspective
buyer may offer far more than they are comfortable with and should they be the
successful bidder – doubts may creep in.
Ann sold her house to the young couple who wished to name it after her and I am
looking forward to seeing it completely refurbished – given a new lease of life.
Contact Cantell & Co
Tel: 020 8940 7373