The UK’s biggest property auctioneer says there is now clear evidence of the impact the global coronavirus pandemic has had on the auction market, as the group sees an all-time high for the annual amount of money he raised, as well as a dramatic shift in his website demographics.
The auction house’s own figures indicate that compared to all of pre-Covid 2019, the money raised in 2021 jumped by more than a third (37.9%) from 439,705,781 £ to over £600m (£606,142,854) – an increase of £166.4m.
Meanwhile, analysis shows that not only does the auction house’s website have more users (from 1.6 million in 2019 to 2.4 million now), but that a greater proportion of young people access the group’s services online. While usage by the 55-64 age group dropped by 19%, there was a 42% increase in the number of 25-34 year olds and an incredible 441% increase in the number of 18- 24 years involved. .
Commenting on the figures, the auction house’s managing director, Jeremy Prior, said: “Without a doubt, the pandemic has created a seismic shift in the way the market works, with impacts that are likely to last forever. Lockdowns and social distancing meant we had to focus on a mix of live and online auctions, which itself boosted the involvement of a younger demographic.
In December alone, Auction House offered 489 lots and sold 418 – a spectacular success rate of 85.5%, fetching £69,145,075 in the process.