Winkworth’s latest trading statement reveals that while its rental side blossomed, sales suffered thanks to the familiar cocktail of Brexit, uncertainty and affordability issues.
Total gross revenues for the franchised office network rose by one per cent in 2018 to £46.5m; but sales were six per cent lower at £23.4m while rentals saved the day up eight per cent to £23.1m.
London offices accounted for 81 per cent of gross revenues, roughly the same as in 2017.
The best performing area was outer London, which saw a one per cent dip in sales income but an increase of 10 per cent in lettings and management.,
“We opened six new offices and new franchising applicants were up 78 per cent from 158 in 2017 to 282 in 2018. In addition, six offices were resold to new management, and we would expect these to have a positive impact on 2019 revenues” says the firm.
“In this low transactional market, Winkworth outperformed its peers and grew market share, improving its ranking to second for properties exchanged in London and third in listings, a reflection of our efficiency at selling the properties we list” the agency says.
After a digital marketing campaign last year the firm saw a 41 per cent surge in visits to the website compared to 2017, 30 per cent more new users and a 21 per cent increase in leads sent out through the website to franchisees.
“When we eventually enter a period of relative political stability, we would expect the market to unlock, with sellers coming forward and buying demand feeding through to increased transactions, albeit without significant price increases due to affordability and tax changes” says the trading statement.
“In lettings we anticipate strong levels of demand to continue to be driven by young professionals.”