Jul 26, 2021 / SELLING

Can Concierge Auctions help sell your ski property?

Chalet Maurine

As well as seeking to offer an incredible range of ski property to prospective buyers, SnowOnly also helps to make selling your ski property as simple as possible. Alongside our excellent tools such as ski property alerts and detailed search system, we’re constantly seeking out innovation in the ski property market - and we think Concierge Auctions are on to something really exciting. 

Who are Concierge Auctions? 

Concierge Auctions is the largest luxury real estate auction marketplace in the world. They command 90%+ market share and have an incredibly comprehensive database of high-net-worth property connoisseurs. Their unique model means buyers have direct access to superb deals on some of the world’s finest property, and sellers gain incredible reach alongside the twin charms of speed and certainty.

Their focus is on the most luxurious, unique properties and they pride themselves on offering solutions that make even the slowest moving luxury property become suddenly sought after. 

Why does their model work so well in the current climate? 

Constraints on travel, erratic border closures and personal responsibility mean traditional avenues for the real estate market are under strain. Despite these constraints, Concierge Auctions continue to succeed - figures from the EMEA region alone show 70% of registered bidders become involved in auction without needing to visit, and 40% of bidders go on to buy sight-unseen.

This evidence shows that the challenges of selling ski property during the pandemic are not insurmountable.

Why do Concierge Auctions work so well for buyers and sellers of luxury ski property?

Auctions are ideal for selling one-of-a-kind, incomparable properties. Every market has a threshold above which homes are more difficult to monetise, and the typical tools of price reductions and prolonged advertising and PR exposure can hurt more than help the outcome of sale. As soon as prices venture into the sphere of €5million plus, price often has no bearing on interest level, and price reductions are ineffective. 

Another complication is that the time on market for a luxury property can often be many years. This protracted presence means this luxury asset becomes “contaminated” - value, desirability and pricing fall into question for both competing realtors and buyers. While traditional real estate services and practices can often undermine a luxury property offering, Concierge Auctions offer sophisticated disposition solutions.

How does it work? 

Concierge Auctions provide an accelerated global sales and marketing campaign that pinpoints out of market buyers. This results in a live, multiple offer scenario for our seller. Their approach combines the benefits of traditional brokerage with the added value of time certainty alongside the competition and urgency created by an auction. 

What is the process of selling your ski property through Concierge Auctions?

Concierge Auctions typically looks at 20 properties for every assignment they accept. Their decisions are based on property location, site within the market, their broker partner, and the seller mindset. Sellers typically have a unique, hard-to-value asset, want to control the timing of sale and are focused on Concierge Auctions’ ability to bring qualified exposure and a field of serious bidders. They excel at setting a schedule, delivering a market, and selling a property in a very efficient timeframe. 

When partnering with a seller to auction a property Concierge Auctions invests heavily into that property and campaign, financially and emotionally. 

The marketing process is approximately 6 weeks, culminating in an online auction and followed by a speedy closing process that mirrors typical market practices.

What are the fees for selling a ski property with Concierge Auctions? 

  • Seller - no upfront engagement fees/marketing costs. Seller retains the right to cancel the auction with no cancellation fees..
  • Listing agent - paid by the seller and retains 100% of their contracted sales commission.
  • Concierge Auctions - paid by the buyer, zero cost to the seller
  • 6% opening bid incentive - paid by Concierge Auctions

Auction process - without reserve auction format 

The overwhelming majority (90% +) of their clients choose the 'no reserve' / 'modified reserve' auction format. The no reserve auction invites everyone to be involved and creating an atmosphere of inclusivity allows all levels of investor to participate and increases the end value/price curve. A no reserve/modified reserve auction builds a more diverse and comprehensive field of bidders, and so the auction cements it's ultimate success.

  • The property will be advertised with the list price, currently at $Xm and "selling to the highest bidder without reserve" (i.e. no minimum bid requirement).
  • For 5-6 weeks, the property undergoes a highly intensive global marketing campaign. This involves a matrix of ad solutions, including cutting edge paid digital and social media campaigns alongside paid traditional print distribution in places like Wall St Journal, Financial Times, Asian Economic Times, South China Morning Post, etc. 
  • A dedicated Project Sales Manager (PSM) works alongside the listing agent and holds daily open houses, to prequalify and educate bidders. The PSM also manages client and agent outreach, and acts as the liaison to our near 860,000 person database of willing and qualified bidder/buyers. The PSM will touch and nurture EVERY inquiry that the campaign brings in - often in excess 1,000!

The results

A typical Concierge Auctions campaign brings in:

  • 750 - 1,000 plus buyer inquiries
  • 25 - 50 showings
  • 3 - 5 pre-qualified bidders at auction 

What is the Internal Reserve / opening bid incentive?

In order to give the seller control over the process, Concierge Auctions incentivises bidders to submit an opening bid as part of their registration paperwork. The winning bidder receives 6% of that opening bid, credited upon closing, which in turn offsets the total auction price of the property. 

The highest opening bid forms an ‘internal reserve’ which gives visibility into the trajectory of the auction. The opening bids technically underwrite the auction before the auction is open proper. As the name implies, opening bids are not the best and final offers, simply they are a bidders initial and opening shot and a very good indication of where the bidder will take their bid to win the property. Typically, opening bids come in at 40-70% of where a bidder is willing to go up to. All opening bids are absolutely binding and irrevocable for the bidder. 

Once the winning bidder is declared on Auction Day, he/she is required to sign the purchase agreement, produce a 10 to 12% non-refundable deposit followed by a 30 - 60 day cash close. The closing peculiarities will be driven and determined somewhat by local best practices or customs. 

What can a seller expect from Concierge Auctions? 

Concierge Auctions seek to deliver an estimate of the likely range of the opening bids prior to signing the auction contract. They emphasise that it is important that sellers understand and accept that the opening bid is not an indication of a low value outcome, but the start of a process that will realise best and market price on the day. The opening bid range and seller expectations is keenly and professionally debated before the signing of the auction agreement and will be underpinned by thorough, in depth analysis of relevant real estate metrics and trends, including comparable offerings, recent and historical sales.

Seller right to cancel - (no reserve auction format only) 

The night before the auction Concierge Auctions hold a conference call with the seller and their agent to deliver the field of registered bidders and the level of the irrevocable bids. At that point the seller will know the minimum price the property could sell for as well as the complete colour of the auction and what it has delivered, including the list of names of those registered bidders, their opening bid, along with Concierge Auctions’ insight and opinions of their tolerances. 

Based on the evidence and information presented at the "green light call", the seller can then make an informed business decision whether to "open" the auction and sell their property at the proven market value, or to cancel the auction. A cancellation invites no fees to the seller, but it will likely result in further disappointment as the property will likely be returned to sit idle on the market, possibly for many more years.

Ultimately, Concierge Auctions offers a superb platform for sellers - the option to withdraw from the auction process means minimum risk - and the fact that Concierge Auctions offer this option means the incidence of an unsatisfactory projected price must be fairly negligible.

Concierge Auctions offer an outstanding platform for selling luxury ski property, and with the current crisis looking set to rumble on for a little while yet, the offer of a solution without borders is truly invaluable. 

SnowOnly is a ski property portal, with access to thousands of sellers, and a reputation for attracting quality leads. Listing your property is free, or you can upgrade to a paid package with no additional integration requirements. Find out more and read what agents and sellers have to say about how our property portal works for them on our dedicated sellers page.