Agent Speaks: Martin Bishop of Bryan Bishop & Partners
PUBLISHED: 09:50 04 February 2010 | UPDATED: 16:39 20 February 2013
Martin Bishop of Bryan Bishop & Partners gives his forecast for the property market for the coming year
How long have you been based in Welwyn?
I first started in Welwyn in 1981 working for my father, Bryan. It was very much a family business then, my brother and sister also worked in the firm. My father had been in property since the early 1960s, moving to Welwyn in 1969. The area we cover is surprisingly large for a 1 office practice, this is because we have always specialised in the upper end of the market and have attracted sellers from as far north as Bedfordshire, on the eastern side of the county we sell in villages to the east of the A1(M) around Hertford and Ware and Essendon/Little Berkhampstead to the south. On the west side of Welwyn we cover The Ayots, Wheathampstead and St Pauls Walden, amongst many others.
What do you like about working in these areas?
For me its the variety of rural, village and country houses I come across, every one is different and often challenging. I still get a buzz from seeing such an eclectic mix of houses and Vendors! I have been fortunate to deal with titled people, celebrities, captains of industry and famous sportsmen and women.
How was 2009 for you?
It was by far the most difficult year I have experienced in estate agency, the rot set in during the latter part of 2008 it was as if the market had hit a brick wall. It just stopped. We found ourselves fighting for every property to try and keep some momentum and turnover. We set up a lettings dept to assist vendors who rented out their properties through us because there were no buyers about, but above all we stayed true to our principle of quality rather than quantity backed up by great attention to detail and high quality presentation and marketing.
Whats the typical property you have on your books at present?
The lowest is 350,000 but our most typical is 4/5 bedroom detached house with a decent garden with an average price tag of around 1million
Are you optimistic for 2010 and what are your plans?
I think this year will be challenging but an improvement on 2009, the property market is likely to stay fairly stable provided interest rates stay low, more people should be able to move this year, provided stock levels increase. It is a generally held view that the recovery is going to be slow and house price inflation kept to single figures, more importantly, the fall in house prices has stopped!
Our plan for this year is to carry on with a measured strategy targeting the market we know best and have most experience inthe prime market.
If youre thinking of selling your home, but unsure about the process or value of the property, we are able to offer a free no obligation consultation. Alternatively, you may require a valuation for probate reasons in which case weare also able and always happy and ready to help.
Martin P Bishop FNAEA
Bryan Bishop & Partners
9-11 Church Street, Welwyn, Hertfordshire, AL6 9LN
01438 718 877