LSL Property Services, which embarked on a significant branch closure programme last year, has reported a 16 per cent slump in revenue for its estate agency division.
In a trading statement to shareholders this morning the company said: “For the twelve month period ended 31st December 2019, Estate Agency revenue was down by 16%, materially impacted by the planned reduction in the size of the Your Move and Reeds Rains branch networks during Q1 2019. Excluding the impact of the closure of the Your Move and Reeds Rains branches, Estate Agency revenue for the twelve-month period was down 4%.”
LSL’s London brand - Marsh & Parsons -saw a three per cent drop in revenue; residential exchange income was down by five per cent and Lettings income declined by two per cent.
Financial services revenue including estate agency for the year was down by two per cent “reflecting the impact of the planned closure of the Your Move and Reeds Rains branches” but there was a big increase in surveying income - 24 per cent growth in one year “which included a material contribution from the successful commencement of the Lloyds Bank plc surveying and valuation services relationship” according to this morning’s statement.
Overall the entire group saw a four per cent drop in revenue in 2019; the firm says that excluding the branch closures, revenue rose by four per cent.
Looking ahead, the company concludes its trading statement saying: "Whilst it is too early in the year to give a view on the 2020 market outlook, the combination of increased political stability and a favourable LSL estate agency sales pipeline on 1st January 2020 compared to the LSL Board's prior expectations provide a positive backdrop to the start of 2020."