All the help you need to prepare, search, evaluate, bid, secure and get moved into your next home.
We are buying agents. We search for homes and seek to acquire them on behalf of our clients. As far as the law is concerned, we are estate agents – we just happen to act for buyers, not sellers. We buy properties between £500,000 and £50m. Some clients just want help looking for a new home, some want help to evaluate a property and to negotiate the best deal. Spending a six figure sum is something most people do on average every ten years.
We act for 40 – 50 clients a year, bid on a house every week and buy two or more a month. In 2022 we had £82m worth of exchanges and £102m of completions. Despite rocketing prices & endless ‘best & final offers’ our clients typically paid 4.3% less than the quoted asking price for the homes they bought although eight paid more – for a variety of reasons. Our biggest ‘saving was £1.95m!
According to Rightmove sellers typically accepted around 5% (£11,000) less than their final asking price. Zoopla says that it’s just 3.86% and figures published by Hometrack suggest that an average buyer pays 97% of the asking price.
Over the past decade, on average our clients paid £143,000 (11%) less!
We charge a retainer of £2,400 (including VAT) and then either;-
£30,000 (£36,000 including VAT) payable on exchange of contracts
a fixed, up front fee of £10,000 (£12,000 including VAT) – see ‘fees‘.
Of course many people start off asking too much for their home and a third of sellers currently on the market have reduced their guide price at least once according to the website Zoopla.co.uk. Be it a £5.5m house in Notting Hill (which completed in March 2019 for less than the asking price and less than the seller paid in 2014!) or a £2.25m home outside Newbury (bought just after the ‘Brexit’ referendum for 10% less) our clients like to pay as little as possible. One third of what we buy is ‘off-market’, not on websites or in estate agents’ windows.
We are not the only buying agents and it’s more important that you have the right advisor than that it necessarily be us. For a brief period of time your buying agent will have a detailed and personal knowledge of your affairs so you must trust them and have confidence in what they are doing and they in you. We are confident that we are at least as good as most firms but are not arrogant enough to think that we can be everyone’s cup of tea. Our aim is that you have the right advisor for you even if that means you are represented by someone else. These are some of the best that we recommend you consider.
A buying agent can;-
- Source off-market properties – those available but not advertised on websites or in agent’s windows.
- Advise on areas, compare and contrast different places.
- Research a street, village or town looking at crime, natural threats such as flooding and over-flights by planes.
- Assess relative value.
- Research the motivations of the sellers and look for pressure points like death, debt or divorce.
- Comment on yield and the potential for capital growth.
- Negotiate with the seller and their agent. (Not all selling agents are slippery but some certainly are!).
- Introduce the best mortgage brokers, accountants and wealth managers along with advisors, tradesmen & lawyers.
- Liaise with solicitors, valuers, surveyors, architects, builders and contractors.
- Help to make your next move the smoothest and most painless experience possible.
We look for properties in London and in the country. We review those that we find, provide objective advice on each and discretion for people who would rather not have their private business paraded in public. Estate agents are not brokers trying to mediate between two parties. They act for, and are paid by one party – the seller!
Buying agents are still estate agents in the eyes of the law and as such each must sign up to a redress scheme. Confusingly there are two, we were members of The Property Ombudsman for many years but this is the one that we are currently signed up to.
It’s important to stress that we are good but we’re not magicians. We can help shorten the process, help to ensure that you don’t buy the wrong thing and buy as aggressively as possible but we can’t dream up a property if one doesn’t exist. We can help to decide what might be worth compromising on and what isn’t.
We had been looking to buy a family home for over a year and had been through a couple of unsuccessful offers before we decided to approach a buying agent.
We met with a few buying agents and Henry was the best fit for us. We were reassured by his experience and his approach to the process (down to earth, honest and a sense of humour). Deciding to work with Henry was the best decision we made; he is the person to have in your corner when you are making the biggest financial commitment of your life.
We finally completed on our family home in the end of March, almost a full year since engaging Henry! Henry guided us away from properties we thought were good for us (perhaps our patience wearing thin), and helped us secure our amazing family home (within our budget), through a very messy and protracted sale process. He kept us (and everyone else from the selling agent, lawyers, insurance broker and mortgage broker), on track and focused.
Buying a house is stressful, but we didn’t feel it as much with Henry in our corner.
Thank you very much Henry for everything, and huge thanks also to Katharine (and Rosie in the early days), for the many viewings you did with us. We are delighted with our new home!
We engaged Henry on the advice of two local estate agents. We had lived in the area for 16 years and we were end of chain, so in theory we should have been able to find our dream home easily. However, we had very specific requirements: 10+ acres, 5+ beds, privacy, commercial potential,
and close enough to avoid disrupting schooling.
Henry chaperoned us through many false dawns to find our dream home – in most cases, houses that hadn’t yet come to market. He challenged our criteria to make sure he understood our motivations, and set up viewings to help us clarify our wants and needs.
Then, at last, we found our dream home – or rather a house that we couldn’t have imagined in our wildest dreams. Needless to say we couldn’t afford it but Henry negotiated it into our ball park and brokered a deal.
On to the next challenge – we had to exchange in 1 month otherwise the house moved back out of reach.
Once the starting gun fired Henry really came into his own, effortlessly steering us through conveyancing to get to exchange in record time. He connected us with a great team of experts and smoothed the process, directing the team and working several steps ahead.
We have no doubt that we would not have found our forever home without Henry. He is a magician!
We had a great experience with Henry and would definitely recommend his services to others. If it wasn’t for his handling of the process and negotiation skills, I do not think we would have been the successful purchaser of what is now our lovely new home and that is invaluable.
Henry is fine communicator and one of the most user friendly individuals I have had the pleasure to work with in this business. As a selling agent there could be a slight doubt of how much a buying agent can add to the process.. but with Henry I can see what is added and this resulted in a happy client on both sides.
Henry acted as our buying agent for our new family home in London when we returned from overseas. From our first engagement Henry provided a comprehensive and professional service from initial area selection through to the final completion of our purchase. His deep knowledge of the London market, his established relationships with many high quality sellers agents and his extensive experience of the process was invaluable as we returned to the country. Throughout this process Henry provided great insight, guidance and support as we assessed various properties and considerations. He did so with patience, humility and humor to make the whole process quite enjoyable. As we approached exchange, his network of trusted inspectors, solicitors and other advisors also proved invaluable. We would have no hesitation in recommending Henry and his team to others looking and we look forward to working with him again in the future.
Just a quick note to say that Richard Pryor was Brilliant, enthusiastic and so helpful. Great pleasure working with him and so glad that everyone ended up moving into their dream home! (Didn’t doubt it for one minute!!) Thanks for all your help Richard!
Having not moved house for 30 years, Richard’s ready support and skilled negotiation strategy ensured that we got the house we wanted at the first attempt for the right price. Richard helped us all through the process from the start to the collection of the keys, even ensuring that our estate agent didn’t get ahead of himself.
Hire them. There is no doubt in our mind that we would not be buying our dream house without their support. Their advice is excellent, and Richard’s dedication to getting the deal over the line was unfaltering. He went above and beyond to ensure that our interests were protected including never hesitating to be somewhere in person to get a job done. Having a formidable team like this on our side gave us such peace of mind, and was worth every penny.
We used the buying service on the recommendation of friends, & have successfully purchased our next home in South West London. It was useful to get an insight into the market from the agent perspective & not have to worry about or deal directly with estate agents throughout the majority of the process. It was also very useful to have someone able to advise on some of the finer details & chase any third parties on a regular basis to keep the purchase on track as we had a tight time schedule towards the end. I would certainly recommend the service if you are looking for advice & particularly help from a practical perspective & are short of time yourself to coordinate between all the parties involved in a house sale/purchase.
We have signed up for the bespoke buying service. After having recently moved to the UK, we found ourselves in the hottest market having no knowledge of property buying in the UK.
We had the pleasure to work closely with Richard on our home purchase in the tricky Oxford market.
Richard was fantastic during the entire process of buying our home. First, he has spent time on clearly understanding our personal and financial situation, our needs and desires, making the search process more focussed and targeted. We felt very comfortable opening up to Richard on more personal topics.
During the search process, we have had extensive discussion on the houses he has identified for us and which we have viewed together. He will take excessive emotion out of this stage of the process by asking the right questions keeping you laser focussed on the initial plan.
Once we have decided to make offers, the value of having Richard and the Pryor family by our side was immense. Richard helped us formulating offers again keeping excessive emotions out. This has certainly not only saved us a lot of money but also gave us confidence in our decisions. Accounting for information he has gathered on the sellers‘ situation, our offers generally stood out by offering more beyond money and ultimately led to one offer being accepted.
Once our offer was accepted, the process was on auto-pilot with Richard working on keeping all the involved parties on the ball. He would keep us informed on the progress and we attribute the swift exchange/completion to his magic.
Buying a property can be quite stressful and time consuming. The Pryor bespoke buying service makes the process more pleasant, efficient and, in our case, we probably saved a multiple of the fee.
We strongly recommend this service to family and friends!