Just like January, February has also passed in a whirlwind and we can definitely call ourselves busy. It does appear that this is not just a little burst of activity but a sustained period of increased instructions – perhaps it is the long-anticipated avalanche of insolvencies! It has been quite a variety this month; a high end chauffeuring company, small builders, a commercial bakery, group of nail salons, a workwear manufacturer, a gym, a personalised chocolate manufacturer and a metal fabrication company.
We have noticed an increase in actually attending sites rather than carrying out desktop valuations, which is a sign of increased asset volumes and values across the board. We have a visible pipeline for March and April and decisions that have long been deferred are finally being made. Perhaps this is due to the end of commercial rent protection on 31st March and the incoming Commercial Rent (Coronavirus) Bill – are Directors finally being pushed into making decisions? Liv is due to present on this matter at the SESCA Insolvency Seminar in May – so watch this space for further information.
We are very pleased to be getting on with our first auction of the year, the assets of the aforementioned metal fabrication company. The auction will include some very exciting Bystronic machines, and with a current lead time of 5 months from the manufacturer for new machines, we are expecting some very competitive bidding on the second-hand market. The marketing for this auction will be released in the next couple of weeks, so please bear us in mind for any of your clients that may be looking to acquire machinery.
Pete and Jason completed the house clearance in Bracknell and we held an open house with our joint agent this week. We had 28 registered parties and received 15 offers – a sure sign that the housing market is still very buoyant. We are moving forward with a strong offer that will hopefully complete in a short time scale and release funds into the bankruptcy estate.
February saw both Mark and Bethany struck down with covid, after managing to avoid it throughout the pandemic. Luckily neither had more than nasty cold symptoms and are back fighting fit and ready to work. Nothing gave Mark more joy than to spend Valentines Day scheduling metal fabrication equipment in a cold workshop!
Signs really are showing now that 2022 is going to be a busy year for our sector. As well as insolvency instructions, we have seen an increase in private clients seeking RICS Red Book property valuations which have been keeping Liv busy. We have also seen a lot of interest from the investment market in terms of business sales and seeking investment properties – suggesting there are parties out there with capital to spend.
As always, please do not hesitate to contact us if we can be of assistance with any matters. We are always happy to take a look at assets for you and let you know if they are worth dealing with. The impact of Covid-19 on many disposal processes have heightened the thresholds of what is cost effective to deal with and not.
We hope you all keep safe and well, and have a busy and prosperous 2022!
Liv and the Team at Proudley Associates