Fine & Country Interior Design caught up with Alex Willcocks, Managing Director of Burbeck Capital and Burbeck Interiors to discuss the benefits of Staging and Styling and his predictions for the future of the property industry.
Tell us about your background in Property Development and how this led to Staging and Styling…
My brother Jack and I started the residential development business six years ago. Our first project was a dilapidated two bedroom flat in Barnes, south west London which was lightly renovated and sold for a small profit. Since then, we have completed developments across London in areas such as Fulham, Kensington, Maida Vale, Clapham and Chiswick and now have £8,000,000 worth of residential development in the pipeline, split across three different sites.
Properties appeal significantly more to potential buyers if they have furniture and accessories. Renting furniture during the sales process is arguably the best money we spend on the entire build because it feels like a more commercial approach to sell a property looking its absolute best rather than just bricks and mortar.
This commercial sense, along with the money we were already investing to create the necessary margins meant that renting furniture during the sales process was probably the best money we spent on the entire build.
Originally, we used other home staging and property styling companies to dress our developments but were often frustrated by the result or the lack of flexibility they offered. The decision to create our home staging business was born out of a desire to create a better product, with the flexibility we know that developers and homeowners need when they are selling their properties.
From our previous experiences, we identified the challenges we faced before and focused on eliminating them to create a successful formula for us and our clients.
You have had great success this year, particularly with your development in Clapham. How has Staging & Styling benefitted this project?
We dressed all three of the units in a large Victorian house which we converted to flats. The cost of the dressing was £20,000 and I can comfortably say it increased the Gross Development Value by £150,000, as represented by the sale price of the development.
Despite what many consider to be a ‘tough’ market, it took just six weeks from launching this development to completion on all three units. The total marketing time for this £2,450,000 development was less than a month. This would not have been possible without Staging and Styling the development.
Tell us about a scenario where Staging & Styling has benefitted the sale of a property?
There are so many I could mention as we see the benefits every week. In February 2019, we dressed a house that originally went on the market in May 2018. The client did not drop the price, but instead chose to invest in Staging and Styling. Within four weeks he had two offers, one of which was in excess of the asking price. This client had never dressed a development before.
As a property developer, what key attributes or services do you look for when you select an agent?
I look for honesty, integrity, a proven record of transactions, constructive feedback, access to the right buyers and a defined strategy as to how they are going to sell my property.
How would you like to see the property market change over the next year?
Defined sales strategies on how best to sell an asset will become significantly more prevalent. I would like more traditional bricks and mortar agents to start adopting aspects from PropTech to help facilitate transactions.
Whenever we are preparing to sell a development, we always have the searches prepared before we go to market. Why risk waiting for searches once you’re under offer?
Tell us why you would recommend Staging & Styling to other developers and clients…
If you are not dressing your developments in 2019, you really are missing out on the opportunity to increase your profit and reduce your time to sell. Why would you not take up that chance?
For expert advice on Staging and Styling, contact Fine & Country Interior Design on 0208 251 8813 or via email at email@example.com.