High street agent numbers drop in London boroughs

High street agent numbers drop in London boroughs
Established high street agents might be able to absorb a slowdown in sales...

New research by online estate agents, HouseSimple.com, has revealed that the impact of the slowdown in the London property market has seen the number of high street estate agents fall in four out of ten London boroughs this year.

However, according to the data, across all boroughs the number of high street estate agents has increased this year, albeit by just 0.5% to close to 2,900. Westminster alone has 8.3% of all agent offices in London, with 241, and more than a third of boroughs now have more than 100 high street agents each.

HouseSimple figures reveal that Barking & Dagenham and Southwark have both seen the number of high street agents rise by 10.7% this year. Meanwhile Barnet has seen estate agent numbers fall by 7.2% and Richmond has seen the number of offices fall by 5.9%.

The following table look at the number of estate agents in each London borough today, compared to the start of 2016:

London Borough

Number of agents in borough – start of 2015

Number of agents in borough – start of 2016

Number of agents in borough – end of 2016

% rise/(fall) in agents since start of the year

Barking & Dagenham

25

28

31

10.7

Barnet

122

125

116

-7.2

Bexley

52

55

52

-5.5

Brent

60

64

64

0.0

Bromley

110

116

116

0.0

Camden

109

120

127

5.8

Croydon

98

103

108

4.9

Ealing

87

91

88

-3.3

Enfield

92

86

88

2.3

Greenwich

64

70

67

-4.3

Hackney

65

74

75

1.4

Hammersmith & Fulham

82

95

90

-5.3

Haringey

58

61

60

-1.6

Harrow

67

67

68

1.5

Havering

53

56

57

1.8

Hillingdon

69

73

69

-5.5

Hounslow

59

65

62

-4.6

Islington

88

111

112

0.9

Kensington & Chelsea

127

137

135

-1.5

Kingston upon Thames

58

64

62

-3.1

Lambeth

79

85

91

7.1

Lewisham

71

79

82

3.8

Merton

62

64

65

1.6

Newham

74

76

76

0.0

Redbridge

77

77

80

3.9

Richmond upon Thames

91

101

95

-5.9

Southwark

92

103

114

10.7

Sutton

46

50

49

-2.0

Tower Hamlets

131

135

136

0.7

Waltham Forest

61

62

67

8.1

Wandsworth

153

160

151

-5.6

Westminster

179

228

241

5.7

TOTAL

2,661

2,881

2,894

0.5


Agents on the high street

Walthamstow has the highest concentration of estate agents within a quarter of a mile of a main tube station, with a total of 21. Canary Wharf has 19.

Alex Gosling, CEO of online estate, Housesimple.com, had this to say: “Last year saw an explosion of high estate agent offices opening across London hoping to take advantage of a booming property market, and many would say, blighting our high streets. But after a strong start to 2016, the market has cooled, with stamp duty changes hitting super prime sales and the EU Referendum and US Election result putting some doubt in buyers’ minds.

Established high street agents might be able to absorb a slowdown in sales, but for the opportunist agents who open to take advantage of a booming market, they quite often disappear from the high street as quickly as they arrive. And many local residents will probably say that’s not altogether a bad thing, because the dramatic rise in agent offices has already homogenized many local high streets.

On the other hand, over the last twelve months we’ve seen a 54% surge in new listings as customers increasingly realise the savings they can make by selling online.”

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