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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Exclusive: estate agencies closing - data shows how many and where

Data prepared for the BBC and shared with Estate Agent Today gives a snapshot of how estate agencies, lettings agencies and chartered surveyors are suffering as the housing market becomes increasingly challenging.

The Local Data Company - which is an authoritative consultancy looking at different retail and High Street activities - was asked by Radio 4 consumer programme You & Yours to see how many physical branches of agencies and chartered surveyors were operating in July 2017, and how many of them were still operating in July this year.

The LDC figures show:

- In 2017 there were 14,021 branches that were primarily estate agencies but by July this year that figure dropped to 13,588 (a 3.09 per cent fall);

- In 2017 there were 2,212 branches that were primarily lettings agencies, and this had dropped 4.25 per cent to 2,118 last month;

- Looking at offices that described themselves primarily as chartered surveyors, the 2017 figure of 420 had dropped 5.95 per cent to 395.

The data collection doesn’t take account of whether the branch closures were as a result of market forces or, possibly, consolidation as larger companies snap up smaller ones. 

However, we do know that some agencies closed offices, not always with much publicity at the time: for example, yesterday’s trading statement from LSL Property Services revealed that it had closed eight offices in the second half of 2017.

The LDC data also does not refer to online or hybrid agencies but it does provide a regional breakdown of branch closures - below:

For estate agencies...

East Midlands: 2017 829 / 2018 801;

East of England: 1,307 / 1,271;

Greater London: 3,753 / 3,669;

North East: 414 / 392;

North West: 1,309 / 1,264;

Scotland: 490 / 470;

South East: 2,257 / 2,195;

South West: 1,318 / 1,267;

Wales: 456 / 451;

West Midlands 1,013 / 969;

Yorkshire and the Humber: 875 / 839.

For letting agencies...

East Midlands: 2017 205 / 2018 196;

East of England: 137 / 134;

Greater London: 364 / 348;

North East: 69 / 65;

North West: 207 / 203;

Scotland: 167 / 164;

South East: 286 / 273;

South West: 261 / 236;

Wales: 109 / 104;

West Midlands 129 / 126;

Yorkshire and the Humber: 278 / 269.

  

For chartered surveyors:

East Midlands: 2017 30 / 2018 26;

East of England: 32 / 30;

Greater London: 66 / 67;

North East: 11 / 10;

North West: 34 / 40;

Scotland: 45 / 43;

South East: 55 / 51;

South West: 56 / 52;

Wales: 9 / 8;

West Midlands 35 / 31;

Yorkshire and the Humber: 47 / 47.

Poll: The main reason estate agencies are closing is...

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