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Interview of Jamie Cooke
Written by the Estate Agent Today team

Jamie Cooke, Co-Founder and Managing Director at iamsold, part of the iamproperty group

Who are you and what does it say on your business card?

I’m Jamie Cooke, Co-Founder and Managing Director of iamsold, part of the iamproperty group.

What is iamsold and what services does it offer estate agents?

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iamsold is the UK's largest auction service provider.   We pioneered the Modern Method of Auction (MMoA) over 10 years ago and today we work with over 3,000 UK Estate Agents supporting them to provide alternative methods of sale to their vendors that require enhanced speed and security. 

In 2020, we paid out over £12m in fees to our Partner Agents and achieved over £529m in capital value raised.

How has the auction market changed in recent years and where is it heading?

Over the past 18 months especially, we’ve seen more agents adopting the Modern Method of Auction as a viable alternative to Private Treaty.  This has been due to several factors such as vendors increasingly looking to avoid the uncertainties that are inherent in most Private Treaty transactions and looking for alternative methods of sale as well as buyers and sellers looking to get ahead of the Stamp Duty Holiday and proceed in a more secure way. This past month we’ve reported record-breaking numbers of bids on properties, as buyers race to agree and complete sales in time.

Coming into this year we had our strongest month ever in January, seeing a 26 per cent growth in online auction sales. Then fast forward to May, more than 4,957 bids were placed –  up 205 per cent on the same period last year and 146 per cent up on the same period in 2019. Showing that the online auction market has really gone from strength to strength!

These increases indicate a growing appetite for auction properties and this method of sale, with over 48 per cent of properties selling above their Reserve Price in May with iamsold (vs. 33 per cent national average) and 2,159 properties already sold this year raising £345m in capital value for sellers.

Tell us about your relationships with Zoopla and Rightmove and the benefits for estate agents?

Our relationships with both of the UK’s leading property portals give us the power to reach more people, boost awareness of auction and educate consumers on its many benefits. Ultimately, that means more sales and higher returns for our iamsold Partner Agents.

Through our Rightmove digital integration, every iamsold listing with a live auction in progress is highlighted within Rightmove search results, with enhanced listings displayed alongside real-time auction information and educational content. This improves awareness of auction amongst consumers to the benefit of agents, with educational content detailing the features and benefits of this method of sale.

What is your greatest achievement in your current role and what made it so special?

Pioneering the MMoA in the UK, taking further steps to educate consumers and paving the way of bringing it to the mainstream as a viable alternative to Private Treaty for those vendors whose circumstances mean that they require enhanced speed, and security.

What is the most satisfying part of your job?

Enabling our iamsold Partner Agents to offer a fast, transparent and secure alternative to Private Treaty, grow their agency and offer vendors much needed choice in the process.

What do you see as the biggest challenge facing estate and letting agents at the moment?

I’d say continued levels of demand and inevitable stock shortages. Vendors and buyers are demanding more from agents and expecting smooth transactions, which is why agents need to explore alternative methods of sale and ways to digitise their processes in order to meet expectations and avoid unnecessary bottlenecks.

What is your property prediction for the remainder of 2021?

Hopefully a continued buoyant market as lockdown restrictions continue to ease.

Country house or city apartment?

City apartment.

Trendy roof terrace or traditional English garden?

Trendy roof terrace, with beer on tap!

Would you rather be a free-moving tenant or settled owner occupier?

A settled owner-occupier.

What is your favourite room in your home?

My man cave! It’s my escape from the chaos of family life, and it’s doubled-up as a fantastic work-from-home office over the past year.

Homes under the Hammer or Location, Location, Location?

Homes Under the Hammer

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