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LONDON-Auctions continue their high-flying success, with £1-million-plus ($1.6-million-plus) lots becoming increasingly common. All eyes will be on Nelson Bakewell’s auction of 21 lots today, with a third of them over the £1-million-mark.

Over two days this month. Allsop & Co’s auction team raised nearly £120 million, selling 177 properties, a success rate of 84%. This beats the 2002 May result of £104 million ($171 million) and is also a clear reflection of the increasing lot sizes being seen in the auction room – an average lot size of £673,000 ($1.1 million) as opposed to £472,000 ($775,000) in May 2002.

Among highlights of the sale are the UK’s largest lot sold under the hammer, an £8.55 million ($14 million) reversionary ground rent in Avonmouth; 32 other lots at more than £1 million of which 10 were more than £2 million; and 44 investment lots sold at net initial yields below 6%.

The biggest demand was for a building in Hitchin, Hertfordshire, let on a long lease to NatWest Bank. It generated 78 requests for the full documents package, an unprecedented level of demand – and the property eventually sold for £470,000 ($771,000), a yield of 4.3%. Allsop’s next commercial sale is scheduled for 8 and 9 July.

Barnett Ross has a full catalogue for its 5 June auction. Among top lots, it is selling Rapier House on Lambs Conduit Street, London WC1. Located in the ‘village’ serving residential and office area between Theobalds Road and Great Ormond Street, it is a 1950s concrete block bringing in a total rent of £282,150 ($463,121) a year. The guide price for the freehold is £3 million ($4.9 million).

Expected to produce the most interest at Barnett Ross’s auction is The Pantiles, in Temple Fortune, NW11. Its first time on the market in more than 30 years, this unbroken mansion block comprises 40 flats producing £178,150 ($292,415) a year. Even with six flats vacant, guide price is £4 million ($6.6 million).

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