Winkworth has told its shareholders that it expects approaches from prospective franchisees to open new branches this year.
In a trading statement released this morning it says sales activity in the final quarter of last year was “brisk” with continued interest despite the end of the stamp duty holiday.
For the year as a whole, the agency’s sales agreed were 13 per cent higher than in 2020 and 42 per cent above those of 2019.
It says that on the back of the strong market "we expect to see an increase in approaches for franchises from new applicants.”
The agency opened six new branches in 2021; five of these were opened by existing franchisees and the agency now says it "expects our local networks to continue to grow, led by talented, proven and ambitious franchisees whose expansion we are supporting."
Dominic Agace, chief executive officer, tells shareholders: "We are conscious of the rising interest rate environment, but the cost of finance remains at a record low and we believe that there is still pent up desire from households to relocate.
"Buyer demand over the end of year break has been reported at record levels and sellers finally seem to be returning to the market.
“While this may hold back the solid growth in prices of the last two years, it bodes well for the number transactions and we expect another busy year."