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December 22, 2014

Jackson-Stops & Staff Joins New Property Website OnTheMarket.com

Filed under: Latest News — Four Communications @ 3:05 pm

Jackson-Stops & Staff will feature all of its properties at OnTheMarket.com, a new property website which launches in January as a direct competitor to Rightmove and Zoopla, the national upmarket agent announced today.

Properties from across all Jackson-Stops & Staff 44 offices nationwide, including seven London offices, will feature on the new property website. In addition, all Jackson-Stops & Staff will continue to be listed with Rightmove.

Jackson-Stops & Staff has more than a century of experience in the prime property market from houses and apartments in London’s smartest districts, to country houses, farms and estates and listed buildings, from residential development and new homes sales to professional services.

OnTheMarket.com – which launches on Monday 26 January 2015 – is a mutual organisation focused on providing an outstanding service for property searchers, estate and letting agents, vendors and landlords. The venture already has the support of more than 4,000 estate and lettings agency branches nationwide, including those of leading national, regional and local firms. OnTheMarket.com is expecting many more to join in the coming weeks as momentum continues to grow. Its member agents will be moving hundreds of thousands of properties to OnTheMarket.com from other websites to create a unique set which cannot be found elsewhere.

When OnTheMarket.com launches, neither Rightmove nor Zoopla will be able to claim their property listings cover the entire market because many estate and letting agents will be leaving them to join OnTheMarket.com as the best platform to showcase their properties in the clearest and simplest way.

The property search at OnTheMarket.com will be slick, simple, fast and state-of-the-art, compatible with the latest technologies. The website will adapt seamlessly to fit the screen of any device being used to view it. There will be no clutter from irritating and distracting third party adverts, nor any spam email.

Every property at OnTheMarket.com will be marketed by a locally-based estate or letting agent because OnTheMarket.com knows the majority of the public recognises the benefits of having a local professional in place who can manage the sales or lettings process on their behalf. Also, there is no substitute for their detailed knowledge of a property, the local area, the current market conditions and the vendor’s/landlord’s personal circumstances.  OnTheMarket.com will not feature properties marketed by online-only agents.

Tim Dansie, on behalf of Jackson-Stops & Staff, said: “Our directors and staff combine a first-class understanding of residential property with the very highest standards of services for clients. We believe OnTheMarket.com will rapidly grow to become a major player in the portal market because it will provide a clean, crisp and simple search function and a highly effective platform for our vendor and landlord clients and be a great place to launch new properties onto the market.”

Ian Springett, Chief Executive of OnTheMarket.com, said: “We are delighted Jackson-Stops & Staff has committed to OnTheMarket.com and we look forward to matching motivated buyers and tenants with all the properties our member agents are marketing for their clients across its 44 offices nationwide.”

Notes to editors:

OnTheMarket.com is the property website of Agents’ Mutual Ltd. Agents’ Mutual is a company limited by guarantee and was established in 2013. Its purpose is to provide a first-class property search service to local estate and lettings agents, their clients and the property-seeking public and it is not driven by narrow shareholder value motives.

Every estate or letting agent firm which lists properties with it becomes a member of the company and has an equal interest in it. One firm = one member = one vote, irrespective of the number of offices a firm has. OnTheMarket.com member agents have provided more than £8 million of pre-launch development funding for the new venture. This has been provided by way of loans and pre-launch subscriptions made in proportion to the number of offices each firm has.

The property websites market was reviewed by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) in 2012 when it considered the merger of Digital Property Group (parent DMGT) and Zoopla Group (a private equity backed business). It found that the market was not working well and there was too little competition and choice for property market participants. The OFT approved the merger which created Zoopla Property Group in April 2012.

In 2013, Rightmove income was £140M and profits were £104M (74% profit margin).  Zoopla’s profits were £29.4M.

The senior management team behind OnTheMarket.com has proven expertise in creating, running and growing successful brands and businesses. They were responsible for the founding and the development of Primelocation.com which is now part of Zoopla Property Group.

All estate and letting agents joining OnTheMarket.com commit to list all their properties at OnTheMarket.com and a maximum of one other competing property website, which in practice means in most cases removing their properties and their listing fees from either Rightmove or Zoopla. This element of the strategy is widely seen as essential in enabling the business to disrupt the duopoly which currently exists in the property website market.

OnTheMarket.com will not accept listings from private vendors and landlords.

OnTheMarket.com will cover the whole of the UK and its member agents are spread according to the national market distribution.  Approximately 70% of its member firms are located outside of London and 30% inside London.

For further information, please contact:

Vikki Thomas on Vikki.thomas@agentsmutual.co.uk or call 0203 714 3985

Marion Hardman, for Jackson-Stops & Staff, on 0203 697 4358 or jss@fourcommunications.com

 

December 11, 2014

Fantastic Fireplaces

Filed under: Latest News — Four Communications @ 12:25 pm

As the temperature plummets, the benefits of a working fireplace in the home become increasingly appreciated. Not only do fireplaces serve a practical purpose, they also bring style and elegance to any room; for hundreds of years they have served to represent interior design trends of the period. The turning point was in the early 16th century when the central hearth was replaced by a wall fireplace in most domestic buildings.  This became an architectural feature which rapidly grew more decorative. Below we have assembled a collection of homes with fantastic fireplaces.

Westbrook Barn is a Grade-II listed house situated in the hamlet of Westbrook on the northern edge of the village of Boxford, Berkshire. The four bedroom house has fireplaces in the drawing room, family room, and dining room. Although the four-bedroom house includes a number of fireplaces, the most impressive example is in the drawing room, where an exposed red brick chimney extends up to the high vaulted ceiling. The part-thatched part-tiled property dates back to the 16th Century, and includes period features, such as exposed beams and wooden floors throughout. The half-acre garden incudes a west facing lawn, mature shrubs, and two greenhouses. The property is on the market for £1,175,000 with our Newbury office (tel.: 01635 45501). For more information please click here.

The Oak Room is a ground floor apartment in Aldersyde house, a Grade-II listed Victorian mansion on the edge of York. The principal space of the apartment is the Oak Room which includes a large marble fireplace, incorporating a sculpture by the famous York sculptor GW Milburn. The Oak Room, which includes siting, dining and study areas, also features extensive oak panelling, oak doors and a double height window. The principal bedroom includes a walk-in wardrobe, bathroom, and separate cloakroom. Externally there are communal gardens and a communal orangery. The property is on the market for £425,000 with our York office (tel.: 01904 625033). For more information please click here.

Farpiece House is located on the edge of the West Sussex village of Elsted. The four bedroom red brick and tiled house was formerly two cottages, which now have been combined. The property features three fireplaces: an impressive large brick fireplace with mantel above is set at the end of the double aspect drawing room, a stove burner in the snug and an open brick fireplace in the dining room. Externally there are 0.70 acres of lawn interspersed with landscaped mature shrubs and flower beds. There is also a three bay open car port with secure storage and a summer house. The property benefits from a close proximity to a number of leisure pursuits:  polo at Cowdray Park, racing at Godwood and sailing at Chichester. The property is on the market for £1,150,000 with our Midhurst office (tel.: 01730 812357). For more information please click here.

Long Thatch is a thatched cottage, situated in the Worcestershire village of Offenham. The Grade-II listed cottage dates back to the 12th century but also features 17th century additions. The cottage was once a bake house for the local Abbey and the original bread ovens are still in evidence. These ovens in the sitting room and dining room now act as large Inglenook fireplaces, adding great character to the rooms. A notable feature of the house is the beamed rooms, and originally these beams were from a ship, although they have since been replaced. The three bedroom property includes a secluded back garden, with a vegetable garden, numerous shrubs, trees and flower borders which can be reached by a gravel path. There is also a garden shed, greenhouse and insulated summerhouse. The property is on the market for £295,000 with our Chipping Campden office (tel.: 01386 840224). For more information please click here.

 

December 3, 2014

Osborne & Little Autumn Statement: Nick Leeming’s view on stamp duty

Filed under: Latest News — Four Communications @ 1:59 pm

Nick Leeming, Chairman of upmarket estate agents Jackson-Stops & Staff, with 44 offices in London and nationwide, said: “This has emerged as the Osborne & Little Autumn Statement – with little incentive for property buyers at the mid to high-end of the market. It is a tax on mansion buyers. This rate of 12 per cent on properties above £1.5 million will penalise the London market and also hit the country house market, which is still struggling to recover from the recession. However, we welcome the changes on stamp duty at the first-time buyer end of the market as this will help to stimulate activity at that level.”

Nick Austin, sales manager of Jackson-Stops & Staff Mayfair reports that the Mayfair market felt an almost immediate impact, he said: “One buyer who was purchasing a £2.4m property in London for his children at university decided to pull out last minute – the stamp duty alone was almost equal to paying their rent.”

However, for some markets, the acceleration of sales ahead of the midnight deadline proved fruitful. Nigel Stubbs, director of Jackson-Stops & Staff Truro, said: “Thanks to an accelerated onward-chain sale in Peckham Rye where the new buyer saved almost a quarter of a million in stamp duty, we were able to exchange on a former rectory West Cornwall. The reform has given things a real kick start, which can’t be a bad thing.”