The thing with “Win A House” competitions is that once one starts then a multitude of others follow. It happened back in 2008 and it’s happening again in 2017, albeit a tad slower than before. We posed the question in February as to whether we’d see the return of these kind of raffles/lotteries/competitions but it has taken until now – and someone winning an £800,000 Country House – for more homes to be offered as prizes.
Over the last few weeks we’ve updated our Win A House Watch with three new competitions plus a new service that hopes to capitalise on people who may want to sell their homes via this method, but perhaps don’t fancy doing the hard work of running their own site. The big questions are any of the these new competitions any good and do we think they’ll result in the house prize being given away.
Win This House
Win This House is one we’re not overly convinced about although that could be because we first noticed the “Win Competion” link at the top of the site’s page. Not a good first impression! The prize itself sounds good – a five bedroom modern propery on the popular Lang Farm development in Daventry. The cost per entry is £2 but 500,000 tickets need to be sold by the start of November for the competition to go to completion.
That all sounds fine until you discover that the value of the property is just over £300,000! If all tickets get sold then that’s a pretty decent profit. When you compare this to the Win A Country House competition though, Dunstan Low sold enough tickets to sell the property and whilst we don’t know if he made a profit, we do know he didn’t make £700,000 as part of the deal. The fundamental purpose of selling a house via a competition is first and foremost sell the house. We don’t think that this house will be won.
Win A Leicester House
Slightly more realistic is the owner of Win A Leicester House. They’re aiming to sell 60,000 tickets at £5 a piece in order to giveaway 17 Garden Street, Leicester. This 3 bedroom terrace property is valued between £100,000 and £145,000 but does need a bit of a “cosmetic upgrade”.
If all tickets are sold then there’s quite a big profit in it – but the problem we see with this competition is lack of desirability. We’re sure Garden Street is a nice place to live, but the competitions that are successful are the ones which offer something out of the ordinary – not the ordinary.
Win Your Country Church
Ticking the right boxes in desirability terms is Your Country Church. Swythamley Chapel is a property in the Peak District and it could be yours for just £6 a ticket. The seller aims to sell 200,000 tickets before the £750,000 property is won. Again there’s quite a hefty mark-up involved with this competition but there are some positives with this particular offer.
Although the website isn’t the best looking it is full of information about the property and the competition. There’s even a special Facebook group, you can purchase an eBook as part of the entry, and the owner is very active with regards the competition. Whilst we’d love to see both the Leicester and Country Church prizes being won, we’re going to say that the latter is the one with the most potential.
Homes 2 Win
Finally, hoping to cash in on the increasing interest in this method of selling a property are Homes 2 Win. This is a new portal site which hopes to run their own property giveaways as well as run them on behalf of owners who may be overwelmed with the various issues and problems that can arise from such a crusade. It’s an interesting idea – almost like an estate agent but one that specialises in selling houses by raffle.
We wish Homes 2 Win all the best with the venture and will keep an eye out for when their competitions start and how things progress. For it to work well we suggest that they focus on desirable properties, reasonable costs, and sensible profiteering from any sales that are completed. Mind you, that doesn’t take into account marketing – quite possibly the biggest key to unlocking success in this area.
How Many Entries?
However, one area where every single house competition that’s launched since Win A Country House has most certainly failed in our view is in keeping visitors informed of entry numbers. The number of entrants received is a good indicator of interest and whether it’s worth a punt. Dunstan Low made sure he kept visitors up to date with how the competition was going and this (in our opinion) kept the snowball rolling in terms of entries.
Without any indication of status, we can only assume that those trying to sell their house by running a competition aren’t being as successful as they’d hoped. We hope to be proved wrong and that in a future blog we’ll be mentioning the winners of the above.
Let us know your views about these competitions – do you enter them or do you think they’re “too good to be true”?