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Prominent estate agent gives profit warning

Shareholders have found themselves reeling from an announcement that Countrywide – the country’s largest estate agent – is due to miss its projected targets for Q1 2019 by up to £5m.

With large numbers of estate agents closing their doors every month due to a slowing economy, Brexit anxiety and a lacklustre property market, it is somewhat unsurprising to hear tales of woe from smaller, independent high street agents. To hear a formal profit warning from a company such as Countrywide, however, is a great cause of concern for those looking to sell their house fast.

The company itself owns a number of high street brands including Bairstow Eves and Bridgfords, but it’s inability to find enough buyers throughout their branches is a strong indication that the uncertainty felt by the vast population over both Brexit and continuing austerity measures is still having a massive effect on the property market and sold house prices.

Of course, Countrywide aren’t alone in their mis-fortune. Even Peel Hunt, a prominent stockbroker in London also announced this week that they were likely to see their YOY Q1 results fall by over 16 per cent.

“For Countrywide, this (Brexit) uncertainty is affecting the residential and commercial property markets, particularly in London and the South,” the company said in a statement.

Countrywide are not only fighting to overcome their loss in profits this quarter, but also to recover from their failed attempt at restructuring in 2015 which led to many experienced staff leaving the company for pastures new.

But what does this mean for homeowners looking to buy and sell? As the fate of the UK’s status within the European Union is likely to be left undecided until later in the year, there is little doubt that the stagnation of the property industry will continue throughout the next two quarters. This means that whilst the balance of supply vs demand remains in the favour of buyers, the majority are not confident enough to pull the trigger on a purchase, causing vendors to reduce their asking prices massively or risk spending a long period of time on the market.

While many sellers are willing to wait until the dust has settled regarding Brexit, this is not an option that is available for those who need to sell fast for personal or professional reasons. That’s why National Homebuyers has been overwhelmed in recent months by vendors looking to sell their home before its value plunges too far.

Worried about Brexit? Why not ask National Homebuyers for advice, as we buy any house. Call 08000 443 911 or request a call back to find out how much you could get for your property.

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