Feng shui is not top of this central London estate agent’s list

Max Curtis, Aston Chase

Max Curtis, Aston Chase - Credit: Archant

Max Curtis, house sales agent at Aston Chase, loves showing property to celebrities and entrepreneurs, but urinating in the flowerbeds? A bridge too far

What’s special about your agency?

The opportunity to meet people who are at the top of their respective fields be it captains of industry, entrepreneurs, international sports stars or celebrities.

Where do you live and with whom?

I live in Shenley with my partner and our two sons, Harry who is four and Ralph who is nearly two.

Why did you buy your current property? What’s your favourite thing about it?

I purchased our present house in 2012 and my favourite part hasto be the views. We overlook a garden square to the front and beautiful mature gardens to the rear.

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If you weren’t an estate agent what would you be?

Growing up I always had an interest in buildings and thought this might lead me to becoming an architect. It obviously wasn’t to be but my love and appreciation of interesting and beautiful architecture still remains.

When did you buy your first property and what was it like?

My first property was a one bedroom flat in Cambridge which I purchased with more than a helping hand from my father. I was over the moon to be on the property ladder and although I have to admit to being a serial mover, of all the homes I have since lived in, I still have a soft spot for my first pad!

What’s your dream house?

I am in the fortunate (or unfortunate depending on the way you look at it) position of seeing dream homes on a daily basis so I frequently find myself suffering from property envy! My idea of a ‘dream house’ would be a wonderful family home with all the toys on Wildwood Road in Hampstead Garden Suburb overlooking the Heath Extension.

How long have you been an estate agent? What’s the most surprising thing you’ve seen on the job?

I am still relatively new to the industry so I have not (yet) had too many unusual experiences although I do remember being rather shocked when I was escorting a Feng shui specialist around a house on behalf of a Chinese prospective purchaser only to turn around when in the garden to see him urinating on the flowers. Suffice to say I was somewhat taken aback and when confronting the Feng shui expert he calmly explained that he was simply trying to determine which way the wind was blowing... seriously weird!!!

How has the local property market changed since you started out?

Since I first started in the business back in 2011 I have seen several significant changes but the renaissance of Marylebone and its emergence as one of London’s hot spots has been nothing short of remarkable with prices increasing from sub £1,000 per square foot to over £3,000 per square foot (in some instances) in little over three years.

What are the most common mistakes clients make?

It would have to be over pricing which is a recurring problem we face. Needless to say, if your house is unrealistically priced you will inevitably attract the wrong type of buyers who, more often than not, will be disappointed with what they see as they will be looking at other similar priced properties that offer better value for money. Ironically, overpricing more often than not can prove to be a counterproductive strategy resultingin a vendor chasing their tail down the market.

What are your top tips for the local area?

It has to be to take full advantage of Regent’s Park which in my opinion is London’s jewel in the crown. If you are lucky enough to be able to live or work in the area it should never be underestimated how much good a brisk walk, run or cycle around the park can be for the mind, body and soul!

Aston Chase