A perfect storm and a perfect start

A perfect storm hit Hammersmith this weekend. Yes, the snow made the town look lovely and gave the kids something to shout about. But it wasn’t just the snow that made people stay indoors – it was the second weekend of major works to the new bridge in Studland Street. 

The under-repair bridge was replaced in a blink of an eye on January 5. But with Transport for London crews closing the street for works yet again, it combined with the snow to give the area a real feeling of calm as people resigned themselves to their front rooms without the usual clatter of the District or Piccadilly line trains hurtling by.

It’s long been said that Brackenbury is a ‘village’ – a term you may suspect was dreamed up by a few aspirational estate agents trying to put the twee enclave on the property map. But if you stepped foot in Hammersmith over the weekend, it felt more like a sleepy village than a bustling Zone 2 town centre. 

But spare a thought for the residents of Studland Street itself. Yes, they probably didn’t miss the noise of the passing cars. But with giant metal fences strewn on either side of the pavement, residents wouldn’t be amiss in thinking they’d woken up in an old Glastonbury Festival field. Even the portaloos were present!

The bad news for motorists or daytrippers is that the traffic headache is set to spread north next week as gas works will snarl the entire Shepherds Bush Green area. Major diversions are in place for weeks on end as ageing gas pipes are replaced. 

Perhaps 2013 will really be the year of the stay-cation. With a dodgy economy, high street stores closing at a rate of knots and road works a go-go, an afternoon on the sofa playing Lego with the kids seems like a truly divine indulgence.


But while major retailers may be struggling on the high street, here at Horton and Garton we’ve had a rather surprising – and exciting – start to the new year.

Feeling reinvigorated from a new lick of paint and a newly-renovated office, I was flabbergasted to handle one of the fastest home sales in my 16 years as an estate agent. So fast in fact that it took less than 72 hours!

Considering that I’ve had hangovers that lasted longer than 72 hours, this sale was a superb example of how cash is king in today’s fast-moving property market. First, the viewing. It went well with the prospective buyer making all of the right noises. I always advise buyers about the need for a firm decision if they are to have their offer accepted. But within three days to have the offer, and then the offer accepted, solicitors appointed and a survey, culminating in the exchange of contracts all within 72 hours was unbelievable! 

While I can only hope I can make another few of these deals a reality this year, my guess is that, like Studland Street, progress is full of slow, steady steps in the right direction. 

And whether you are building with bricks or Lego, the right foundation is key to any property decision. So whether you are buying, selling or renting, why not drop by the new-look office and chat with my staff. You might find yourself with an offer you can’t refuse.