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Foxtons is set to increase its number of sales negotiators by 10% as available properties for sale return to the London market.
“We’ve got the stock and my view is that we haven’t had enough sales negotiators on the ground, boots on the ground. So we will be, and are, increasing sales negotiators.
“Frankly if you’ve got the stock, you’ve got the people to sell it and you are defensive of your premium fee, then there are massive opportunities,” said Peter Rollings, interim CEO at Foxtons.
“We’re looking to increase the sales negotiators by 10%,” he said.
This is as the high-end estate agency recording a dip in sales of 17% for the first half of the year in what it has cited as a fallout from the Chancellor Rishi Sunak removing the stamp duty holiday last summer when buyers rushed to take advantage of the policy and meet the deadline. Lettings revenue at the group increased by 20% during the period.
Revenue at the group increased by 3% in the first half from £63.4 million last year to £65.1 million this year. Operating profit jumped 13% from £5.4 million to £6.2 million.
The estate agent noted that “political and economic turmoil” still had the capacity to impact the London market but that for now interest rates although “painful” were not an overt cause for concern.
“The fact is there is quite a lot of stock, but it’s a bit lumpy in there, for a number of reasons, mainly that conveyancers, surveyors, mortgage companies are short staffed.”
He added that the likelihood of the hold up in property sales would clear would happen in the second half of the year or “maybe even in the third quarter”.