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    Some background...

    Breckon & Breckon is an independent firm of Estate Agents established in 1947 and now operating from a network of six offices in the county of Oxfordshire.

    We are property professionals with many years of experience in the local market. Whilst we are constantly recommended by many firms of solicitors, high street banks and other institutions, we are very proud of the fact that the majority of our new business comes from the personal recommendations of past clients.

    As a privately owned company we are able to react quickly to changes in the market. We constantly review our marketing, often setting new standards for other estate agents to follow. As an established agent we have a large database of prospective buyers that is shared throughout our network of offices. This database is accessed through our state of the art computer system enabling us to match properties to buyers without delay. However, none of this innovation means a great deal if it is not backed up with the right staff. Breckon & Breckon has an enviable reputation and is seen as one of the most sought after companies to work for. Our staff are quite simply some of the most experienced property professionals that Oxfordshire has to offer.

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    • Top 10 tips to selling your home

      We fully understand the importance of an individually tailored market appraisal. We would love the opportunity to meet with you to demonstrate why we might be best placed to serve your needs, it's never too early to call us out for a free valuation. In the meantime, why not have a read through our top 10 tips to selling your home.

      Breckon & Breckon currently conduct in the region of 400 viewings a week and have been in the business of selling property since 1947. It is quite interesting that despite the many thousands of viewings we carry out each year across all price ranges, the same few tips seem to help our clients achieve the best price. Lets face it, we all love the Sarah Beeny / Phil Spencer type T.V. shows. They too have a great deal of property experience but from a national perspective. What we would like to do is share with you some local knowledge and let you in on the top 10 most relevant tips to assist with the sale of your property in Witney and the surrounding West Oxfordshire villages.

      1. The Golden Minute

      We can pretty much tell within one minute of the prospective buyer arriving how they feel about the property. First impressions are really important. Take a friend or family member to the opposite side of your road and look back at your home, what do you see? Consider the good and bad. Deal with bad to enhance the good. Remove wheely bins, trim the hedge, rehang the gate etc. and then make the entrance hall as clutter free and inviting as you can. Remember that golden minute.

      2. If it's broke - Fix it!

      Todays hectic lifestyle means that for most people those niggley little DIY jobs never get done. Now is the time! We certainly are not talking about redecorating throughout, but more in line with fixing that cupboard door in the kitchen, replacing the cracked window pane or the sealant around the bath. Maybe your helpful friend could point these bits out to you. Don't take offence but do take action.

      3. De-clutter

      Ok, so you've made it through the first minute, your buyers are still smiling, we need to keep it that way. Ask the same person that looked at your home from across the road to come inside and wander around with you, room by room, and point out all of the bits of clutter that you perhaps no longer see but have learnt to live with. If you come to realise you haven't used it for the last few months, why not demote it to the loft, or better still, sell it on eBay? Rooms look bigger with furniture but considerably smaller when cluttered.

      4. Stay away!

      One of the most important things when showing a buyer around is to make them feel at home. If the owner is around, even if in a different room it can make the buyer feel a little uneasy which is certainly not what we want. These days estate agents tend to accompany most viewings, make sure your estate agent accompanies them all! Try to stay out of the way for at least half an hour per visit. You'll also find that the feedback is more accurate when given to the estate agent without the owner present.

      5. Listen to feedback

      It's quite likely that not everybody will feel the same way about your home as you do. This in itself is not a bad thing. Encourage detailed conversations with your estate agent after each and every viewing and get to the real reason why the buyer is not going to take it any further. If you haven't found a buyer after the first 10 viewings and you do nothing it is quite likely the next 10 viewings will result in similar outcomes. Listen to the recurring objections, work out ways to overcome them and put your plan in to action.

      6. Bits you love

      Just before your willing helper disappears, give them a pad and a pen and go back around your property once again. There will be at least one special feature in every room that may have been a contributing factor when you bought the property in the first place, or that you have come to know and love in your time there. This could be anything from a spectacular view from the bedroom to a stunning stone fireplace. It is essential that each and every special feature is pointed out to your buyer on their first visit.

      7. Actively encourage offers

      It is far better to have received a low offer that you turn down than to have no offers at all. Both sellers and estate agents have their own opinions as to what a reasonable price may be. In reality it is down to the prevailing market conditions and how buyers feel about your property that determines the level of any offer. Every negotiation has to start somewhere and without an offer, your agent has nothing to work with. Furthermore this gives your agent the opportunity to inform other potential buyers that offers have been made but not yet accepted.

      8. Pricing

      Never underestimate the importance of your asking price. We have been brought up to believe that when it comes to property, it's LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION. We all fully accept the importance of location, but at the moment a correct pricing strategy is paramount. Getting the best price for your property is not about setting the highest asking price, but about attracting the buyer or buyers that are ready willing and able to pay the top price. Underpricing your property is almost as dangerous as overpricing it, so don't be tempted to go down either route! Thoroughly research the market before setting your price, or better still make sure your estate agent has done this research for you.

      9. Marketing

      If you have taken on board a lot of what has been covered above, the most important thing now is to take your property to the market and expose it to as many people as possible. Most agents have a low key marketing option which works in certain circumstances, however, if you are looking to get the best price for your property you need to shout about it. Estate agents introduce buyers through one of three channels, the internet, their database and more traditional forms of advertising (newspapers, window displays, For Sale boards etc.). Most property websites have upgrade options to make your home stand out from the crowd, make sure you take every upgrade on offer! Look through the local property paper to see which adverts stand out. Rows and rows of tiny property pictures crammed on to one page does not work well. For Sale signs need to be eye catching and the sales brochures used by your estate agent must be the best in the business with professional photography and a floor plan.

      10. Choosing your Estate Agent

      A common mistake when choosing an estate agent is picking the one that offered the highest valuation or perhaps the one that suggested the middle of three prices. Whilst their guide to pricing is important it is more pertinent to select the estate agent that you genuinely feel is best placed to deliver your expectation. These expectations should be centered around everything that is important to you and may include communication skills, feedback, professionalism, honesty, integrity and dogged determination to ultimately deliver the best possible price. Don't just take their word for it, put them to the test. A little mystery shopping goes a long way

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    A few buying tips
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      Buying a home is as difficult as it's ever been. According to our research at MoneySupermarket, the average age young people expect to get on the property ladder is 37 - a clear sign of the tough economic climate taking its toll. But even if you are not a first-timer it's easy to forget the dos and don'ts from the last time you bought a house. We look at 10 tips everyone should keep in mind.

      1. Get your mortgage agreed first

      Post credit crunch, borrowing from banks and building societies is not a given. So whether you are a first-time buyer or are moving up the housing ladder, check you can get the mortgage you need before starting the process. If you are buying your first home get a mortgage agreement in principle secured first. This is a document from a lender which states that it will lend the agreed amount, based on the information you have provided. Bear in mind, though, this is an indication and not a legal agreement. If you are a current homeowner and need to increase your mortgage to move - or even if you don't want to move but just want to raise funds - be aware that the lender will reassess you as if you were applying for the borrowing for the first time. If your circumstances have changed - for example, one of you has stopped working or become self-employed - it's a good idea to speak to an independent mortgage advisor first. Our mortgage partner, London & Country offers fee-free independent advice on 0844 209 8725.Do your own homework too by comparing deals requiring various deposits at MoneySupermarket's mortgage channel.

      2. Research the area thoroughly

      Make sure you investigate where you are buying thoroughly. With property websites such as Upmystreet.co.uk, you can research into anything from crime levels to school results, simply by punching in the postcode.But researching from behind a computer screen doesn't compare to visiting the street and general area in person. Make sure you do this at different times of the day and week. For example, what's the traffic like when the schools turn out? Does the town centre turn into a no-go area past 8pm on a Saturday? How reliable is the train service if you are a daily commuter?

      3. Think carefully about your offer price

      On the face of it, the housing market is pretty static at the moment. The latest data from The Office for National Statistics (ONS) for example, shows that average prices increased by 0.2% in February and by 0.3% in the last 12 months. However this is only on a national basis.There is a raft of individual micro-markets throughout the country and even adjacent streets differ in value, so research accordingly.At Zoopla.co.uk you can find what price an individual home last sold for and on what date, as well as get an estimated current value based on a cross section of house price indices. Add this to any advice you receive from estate agents when it comes to settling on an initial offer price.

      4. Hold your nerve

      Give yourself a little room for manoeuvre if your initial offer is rejected - but don't go over and above the maximum price you had originally set in your mind. Holding your nerve could save you thousands, especially if there are not many other potential buyers in the offing. And, if you lose the house and had reached your cap, you couldn't afford it anyway.

      5. Don't be satisfied with the mortgage lender's valuation

      A lender's valuation is just that - an assessment carried out by the lender to check that the property presents adequate security for its loan (although you will pay for it). To look for actual faults in the property, you will need to commission your own independent survey.On most homes, a Home Buyer's Report, which will expose problems such as damp, dry rot and subsidence, is adequate. But if you are buying an older or unusual home a full structural survey is probably a better idea.

      6. Get to grips with leasehold

      The complex and archaic rules surrounding leasehold property can really put your head in a spin. If you are buying a home within a shared block and feel out of your depth on leasehold issues such as covenants (rules of the lease), call the Leasehold Advisory Service on 020 7383 9800. As a government-funded public body, this service provides consumers with free and impartial advice on the law relating to residential leasehold property in England and Wales.

      7. Fix the cost of your legal work upfront

      Buying a home is usually the most expensive purchase of anybody's life - but even with that in mind, it's still probably going to cost you more than you thought. This is especially the case when it comes to legal work which can be unfamiliar and without a finite end date.However, some solicitors and property lawyers offer fixed fees for home-buying costs, so it could pay to shop around for one that does. Visit the Law Society for more details.

      8. Know your Stamp Duty thresholds

      Stamp Duty is a cost that's less opaque than legal fees - but it's also probably the biggest. Brace yourself by getting familiar with the thresholds. The main point to note is that the land tax now kicks in at 1% on all homes over £125,000 for all buyers. The government's concession for first-timers on property between this threshold and up £250,000 expired in March. See our article for how to claw back the potential £2,500 lost in Stamp Duty. Note also that, unfortunately, this is a flat-rate tax so the percentage you see is the percentage you pay on the entire cost.

      9. Get covered with buildings insurance from the date of exchange

      Remember that you are legally responsible for the structure of the property from the point you exchange contracts, not the point of completion. In this case it's crucial you get buildings cover in place from this date. In terms of contents insurance, it makes sense to get cover before you move in. Call your insurer and find out how its cover applies for goods outside the home so that you know you've got protection while you're moving. Your moving company should have insurance to protect your belongings, but it's likely you will move at least some items yourself.

      10. Don't despair if you can't afford it this time

      As far as the experts are concerned, house prices are not going to do much this year, a subject you can read more about in our article, 'What's in store for house prices'.We asked a panel of experts for their forecasts on house price movement this year and beyond - and the general consensus is that, if you can't quite afford to buy a house this year, you might be in with a shout next year as prices will not be that different to where they are today. In the meantime, saving as much cash as possible will put you firmly on the starting blocks for next time

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Our Abingdon team
  • Team Member

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    Andrew Topping MNAEA Sales Manager
    Andrew joined Breckon & Breckon as Sales Manager in the Autumn of 2011, opening the new Headington Office. He brings with him 17 years of experience, 15 of which have been spent working in the Abingdon and South Oxfordshire area. The new Abingdon office was opened in the Spring of 2014 and he is very excited about building upon the very strong relationships and links he already has within the town. Andrew's calm and friendly manner has provided many customers with the level of service that puts Breckon & Breckon head and shoulders above the competition.
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    Kate Donoghue MARLA Letting Manager
    Kate has worked in the Oxfordshire letting market for a number of years. She opened our Headington office in 2011 and subsequently took the helm as Letting Manager in the Abingdon office. Her bubbly personality combined with her enthusiasm and impressive market knowledge are key elements to the great relationships she forms with our landlords. Kate is ARLA qualified and lives in South Oxfordshire with her husband.
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    Rachel Mazonowicz MNAEA Assistant Sales Manager
    Having lived in Oxfordshire for over 25 years, Rachel has spent many years within the property industry, working initially for a well-respected Oxfordshire based independent agent before moving on to a large corporate organisation, covering both sales and lettings. She joined Breckon & Breckon in 2012 and brings a personal approach to sales with a commitment to finding the right property for the right person. In her down time she is a keen gardener with a passion for 'cutting patch' flowers and 'grow your own' veg
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    Can Sengunes - Photographer
    I have been in the photography industry since I qualified from City of Westminster College 1987-1989 where I did work experience at Pinewood Studios. My very first freelance commission was a double page spread editorial for the Architects Journal. Since then I have worked in every genre from photographing bands to photojournalism, weddings and schools. I joined Breckon and Breckon as a staff photographer in 2011 and love the excitement of totally unpredictable days...every day! My other great loves are travel, music and science
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    Charlie Landells Digital Media Manager
    Charlie is our digital media manager and has been in the corporate & event media industry for four years, building a large portfolio from music videos to webinars, and working in social media & networking for the same period. Having joined us in 2017, he loves the daily challenges Breckon & Breckon produce, and the fact that he never knows where he'll be filming next, or what he'll be producing! He's always looking for new and original ways to present our properties, events, and day to day workings, alongside keeping a growing digital footprint alive with content! Oh, and he relies quite heavily on caffeine.
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    Martin Crick Sales Negotiator
    Martin has been working in retail sales management for premium brands for the last 6 years and has recently joined the team from a large corporate organisation's letting department. Martin has always been local to South Oxfordshire and has a great knowledge of all the villages surrounding Abingdon. In his spare time Martin enjoys travelling when he can and spending time with his wife Lucy and his daughter Lily.
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    Rebecca Taylor Letting Negotiator
    Rebecca has lived in Abingdon her whole life, so has a great knowledge of the local community and surrounding area. Previously she worked in banking and insurance, so she has a particularly methodical approach to supporting our clients. This alongside her contagious personality ensure she delivers excellent service. Rebecca plays an active role in planning charity events for a local care home and has a French bulldog called Ralph, who she can often be spotted walking in the countryside!
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    Client testimonials

    Testimonials from Sellers

    • Seller Testimonial

      Not just an estate agent
      Breckon and Breckon were fantastic in aiding the ease of securing our property at a difficult time for our sellers. They have been professional from the moment we viewed the property to the time of completion and beyond. Myself, as an organiser for a local school, have seen them excel themselves by supporting our small school and the local community.
    • Seller Testimonial

      Delighted in all aspects
      Breckon and Breckon in Abingdon is a little gem of an agent. From instruction to sale, they surpassed my expectations. The price achieved was way above what I'd believed possible. Communication (an aspect on which many agents fall down in my experience) was always good and timely. I have absolutely no hesitation in recommending their services."
    • Seller Testimonial

      Excellent service from start to finish. Top Marks!
      I cant fault Breckon & Breckon. They provided an excellent service throughout the sale of my property. I only wish I had started with them! Andrew Topping kept me in the loop with every aspect of the sale and was always available and more than happy to provide advice, guidance and recommendations.. Faultless."
    • Seller Testimonial

      We would recommend them to anyone.
      "We were well looked after and kept informed at all stages of the sale of our house."
    • Seller Testimonial

      Helpful, honest, knowledgeable and efficient
      "I sold my property with Beckon & Breckon last month. They kept me up to date at all times and they were honest and reliable throughout. Andrew and Rachel and both lovely people who genuinely care about the sale and the experience of their clients. They are easy to talk to and very responsive. When there was a hold up with the process (which was entirely unrelated to Breckon & Breckon) they were very effective in getting things moving again. I cannot recommend Breckon & Breckon highly enough. They are completely different from any other agent l have dealt with. They are vastly superior

    Testimonials from Buyers

    • Buyer Testimonial

      Extremely Professional
      "Rachel is an extremely professional and experienced estate agent. She handles all questions and issues in a quick and efficient manner and will always return your call as soon as she is back from an appointment. Highly recommended.
    • Buyer Testimonial

      Professional, Efficient, Knowledgeable
      "We purchased a property through Breckon and Breckon. Andrew and the Breckon and Breckon team were exceptional. Very knowledgeable, professional and efficient. Advice was provided every step of the way and they worked hard to ensure a smooth process. Given the excellent service I wouldn't hesitate to use Breckon and Breckon when we come to sell."
    • Buyer Testimonial

      A stress free move
      "Buying my new home through B&B was a relatively stress-free experience. Rachel was friendly, efficient and communication was excellent. The welcome to your new home bag containing first day essentials and a bottle of fizz was also a really lovely touch. Thank you for everything.
    • Buyer Testimonial

      Superb service.
      My purchase was a very complex sale through no fault of the agent, with the Breckon and Breckon team and the over and above help given, it came to a satisfactory conclusion. My thanks all round and these guys will be my first port of call for any future property transactions.
    • Buyer Testimonial

      Recent sale and purchase of our properties
      We were very fortunate to recently sell via the Breckon and Breckon Abingdon office and also buy our new property via the Oxford Office. This enabling us to have a trouble and stress free move. The house we sold was a very unique and quirky place, but a buyer was promptly found within 10 days which was perfect, and also being marketed right, we achieved the full asking price! Our dealings concerning our purchase were undertaken in a very personnel and professional manner and we were always kept in the loop which was very reassuring. Very satisfied with the service from Breckon and Breckon and would definitely recommend and use them again.
    • Buyer Testimonial

      Absolutely fantastic service!
      "Rachel and the team in Abingdon were selling a property we were interested in, we saw it the day it went on the market and then promptly put in an offer. Rachel performed all the due-diligence measures on behalf of the vendors to ensure that we were in a good position to buy the property. I thought this was great as she was very protective of the vendors in ensuring that we were suitable to move forward with. We were in a good position, there was no chain either side and we thought the process could happen very quickly to meet all parties needs. How wrong we were! Almost everything that could go wrong went wrong and the whole process took over 6 months. There were tears from my wife, mortgage offers being revoked at the final hour, endless requests for paperwork, storm damage to the sellers' new property and completely inept solicitors. Although Rachel and the team weren't directly engaged with us and we weren't paying them anything being the buyer, they went over and above what was expected. Rachel became my counsellor, I would often phone her up to vent and let off steam as she was so involved, she genuinely cared and wanted us all to succeed. Rachel did her job to the highest degree and more, she dealt with all parties regularly and kept the whole process moving, which was extremely difficult at times. I think I spoke to Rachel daily and sometimes three times a day! Breckon & Breckon, especially Rachel were exceptional throughout. I would certainly recommend them to anyone in the future and already have done. When we are looking for our next move we will certainly be using Rachel and the team again. I can't express how impressed I am with the end to end service we received, the goody bag when we picked up the keys was also a nice touch. If you use B&B, you certainly won't be disappointed."
    • Buyer Testimonial

      Good solid service that was easy to understand
      "As a first time buyer Breckon & Breckon were very good at turning a daunting task into a fun and easy to understand experience. All set backs were handled quickly and efficiently and there was always someone on the end of the phone to help out, They are a maintain a good survive throughout the entirely of the sale and have continued following completion.
    • Buyer Testimonial

      A very efficient and helpful service
      "We recently bought our first home through Breckon & Breckon, and we would fully recommend them to anyone else buying/selling a house. The service was very efficient and helpful, and any question or request was quickly dealt with. Thank you for all your help!"
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    *Guide Price: An indication of a seller's minimum expectation at auction and given as a “Guide Price” or a range of “Guide Prices”. This is not necessarily the figure a property will sell for and is subject to change prior to the auction.

    Reserve Price: Each auction property will be subject to a “Reserve Price” below which the property cannot be sold at auction. Normally the “Reserve Price” will be set within the range of “Guide Prices” or no more than 10% above a single “Guide Price.”

    Auction Fees: The purchase of this property may include associated fees not listed here, as it is to be sold via auction. To find out more about the fees associated with this property please call Breckon & Breckon, Abingdon on 01235 550550.