Accelerating Agent Success case study - Dowen Auction Sales & Lettings

Auction is for every property, for every price range. If I had a Van Gogh painting, I would take it to auction.

John Nicholson, Managing Director, Dowen Auction Sales & Lettings



Dowen is a full-service Estate Agency with branches around the North East, operating in auction, sales and lettings. Dowen was one of the first Estate Agents to work with us after iamproperty was founded in 2009, and uses iamsold, movebutler and iamproperty CRM to support the team.

Why iamproperty?

Managing Director, John Nicholson said: “We love working with iamproperty for many different reasons. It makes us a lot of money, which is great, but as a company, we have excellent communication. There is a real feeling of family that has been a growing relationship throughout the years.”

“The services that we use with iamproperty started with auction and have developed into compliance with movebutler and now CRM systems with openview (iamproperty CRM). These systems all make our life day to day much, much easier. They are an extremely efficient and modern way of thinking.”

“iamproperty over the years has become an extension of Dowen, it’s essentially the brother or sister of the company, especially with the auction specialists. The auction specialist that we work with now, as well as the number of different ones we have had over the years, and always really integrated into the team like they’re one of us, and vice versa.”

The big wins…

“Our biggest success story with iamproperty’s Modern Method of Auction was the property 1 Whinney Hill. This was a personal success story for me as I was the manager and valuer in the Durham City branch at the time. The property is a three bedroom, semi-detached, ex-local authority property in Durham City, located quite close to a prison. This was not an ideal purchase from a family point of view but in an excellent area for investment due to the proximity to Durham University.”
“A rival Estate Agent had been to the property and valued the home at £235,000. I got the opportunity to get into the home and pitched auction. The clients in the first instance were not particularly keen on the idea of auction, albeit I was trying my best to convince them they would get a lot, lot more money – and I was very confident about that. After going back and forth for a couple of weeks, we finally got them to agree to go to Modern Method of Auction.”

“Subsequently, we marketed the property and had over 40 viewings, and after we took stock of all the viewings in the interested parties, we then set an online auction date for a Friday afternoon which was due to lapse at 2 pm. With the Modern Method of Auction bidding process, if you bid within a couple of minutes of the auction finishing, it will extend for a further five minutes to allow people to have time to think and increase their bids or manage any technology problems, but allows us to get the best possible price and drive every penny out of a potential purchaser.”

“Bidding was supposed to finish at 2pm but it finished closer to 8pm on the Friday evening with a winning bid of £432,000. This client was prepared to accept £235,000, off professional trust from another Estate Agent, so as you can imagine, this client was pretty pleased with what we did. It resulted in selling 2, 19 and 21 Whinny Hill, all under Modern Method of Auction because of that success story. That just shows Modern Method of Auction is the right process for every property. We knew that property would drive up in price, that landlords would be desperate for that property, and we exposed via the transparency of auction what buyers were prepared to pay.”

Over to you…

“Auction is for premium products. It’s for every property, for every price range. If I had a Van Gogh painting, I would take it to auction. I would not sell it on the cheap with a small audience – I want to maximise the audience. I also want transparency, which is what Modern Method of Auction gives. It allows a buyer to see exactly what they need to pay, which ordinarily drives the best possible price.”

“From an agent’s point of view, auction means fees are generally higher than a residential fee, so we make more money from selling properties from auction. Having all the different iamproperty products in one house allows us to make the business a little bit more efficient and act upon every opportunity that we have.”

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