Almost ten agencies a week will go bust this year as problems pile up for high streets, claim

Almost ten estate agencies a week will go bust this year.

The forecast comes from property management firm Apropos by DJ Alexander.

Official data shows that 371 estate agency business entered informal insolvency proceedings in the first nine months of this year.

The breakdown is 348 in England and Wales, and 23 in Scotland.

If the trend continues, this would equate to 494 for the entire year – 464 in England and Wales, the highest since 2014, and 30 in Scotland.

David Alexander, managing director of Apropos, which is promoting a high-tech solution for letting agents, said: “These figures highlight the impact that a declining high street coupled with a changing marketplace is having on the traditional estate agency sector.

“The problems faced by the high street are impacting on all businesses regardless of sector as we can see from the recent closure of Thomas Cook, the problems facing Mothercare, and the numerous restaurant chains which have closed their doors over the last year.

“These are issues of long leases, high rents and rates and declining footfall.”

He went on: “The specific issue for the estate agency sector is how to remain relevant in a market that is shifting relentlessly online. Ensuring you offer an appropriate and vital service to your clients is now not just important it is essential.

“Customers under 40 run their lives through their phones, tablets and computers. This group would never consider going into an estate agents’ office for information and they are the future, so the market must shift to cater for this group.”

He went on: “The days when estate agents had an office on every high street have gone.”

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/company-insolvency-statistics-july-to-september-2019

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5 Comments

  1. Rollo

    As a new start up , I spend a lot of time speaking with agents who want to set up on their own but also independent agents who want to find a way of staying afloat and getting their fixed cost down.

    In all sectors of the industry markets are challenging and operational cost seems to be going only up. Rates , pension contributions, cars leases, rent, portals cost…..

    often what we love best about being estate agents gets lost in the every day of running ones business and making sure the show goes on.

    but at the same time, is the high street the only way ? Banks, insurance firms, travel agencies have adapted and as estate agents we need to start thinking out of the box and re-invent ourselves to stay ahead of the games.

    Our future is not just about cheap onliners with fixed fees and zero service! We must keep our core which is customer service. Where one shows true value by going all out for ones client .

    it is just that this no longer has to be done via the traditional high street model.

    We are trying to build an alternative so agents can keep doing what they love and do best.

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  2. Woodentop

    it is just that this no longer has to be done via the traditional high street model.

     

    And then I saw the advert!

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    1. Property Pundit

      Shameless that one!

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  3. BryanMansell

    The forecast for closures on the high street were much, much higher a few years ago, due to online agencies being the way that the public were supposedly moving to. This has not happened, high street agents have adapted and embraced elements of tech to improve. Too many agents still have no real idea of what makes them different to their competition and this should be their biggest worry.

    PROPERTY INDUSTRY EYE TERMS & CONDITIONS #6. Users may not use comments to promote a service or business.

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  4. The Future Is Tech

    There is no point in having a high street office anymore. More and more offices will close and have a hub to work from, where there is parking.

     

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