Sales remain the predominant source of income for most estate agency brands, research claims.
The analysis warns that agents shouldn’t ignore lettings though as rising house prices and the need for larger deposits could push more would-be first-time buyers into the rental market instead.
The research, based on company reports and data from The Property Ombudsman, found that sales now account for an estimated 53% of branches versus a 47% market share for lettings branches.
Boomin assessed the income generated from sales and lettings by the major agency brands.
It found that between 2020 and 2021, LSL saw the income generated from property sales increase by 47% versus just a 6% increase in lettings income.
Per branch, LSL generated an average income of £203,116 as a result of sales income, while lettings generated £175,637 per branch.
Hunters saw a 54% increase in sales income versus just a 12% uplift in income generated via lettings.
The agent saw an average sales income per branch of £205,288, while lettings generated just £83,654.
The analysis highlighted Foxtons as proof that lettings can not only substantially supplement the income generated by an agent, but it can be the driving force behind their overall performance.
In 2021, Foxtons generated £74.3m in lettings revenue, averaging £1.3m in lettings income per branch, according to the research.
In the same year, its sales revenue totalled £42.7m, averaging £748,649 per branch.
In 2019 prior to their acquisition by Connells, Countrywide also saw the revenue generated via lettings exceed that of sales, averaging £216,547 in lettings income per branch versus £210,829 as a result of sales.
This, Boomin claims, suggests that businesses that do not also plug-in a lettings offering are missing out on an estimated £147,079 of income per branch.
Michael Bruce, chief executive of Boomin, said: “Sales is the predominant focus for many agents and who can blame them? Particularly when we’ve just witnessed such a sustained period of market activity that has helped drive sales revenues up considerably.
“At the same time, the ongoing resources and specialist expertise required to execute within the lettings space can act as a perceived deterrent to many agents.
“But this additional time and resource can be easily justified now that consumer affordability is potentially turning toward rentals. Lettings as a focus creates a huge additional financial opportunity for sales only agents as house prices and deposits become further out of reach.”