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London rents back to pre-Covid levels as workers return, say Foxtons

·2-min read
A Foxtons letting sign outside a property in London (SIPA USA/PA Images)
A Foxtons letting sign outside a property in London (SIPA USA/PA Images)

Estate agent Foxtons says London’s property market remains hot even without the stamp duty holiday that boosted demand for the last 12 months.

Foxtons said the number of houses ‘under offer’ at the end of September was up 20% on pre-pandemic levels and the pipeline for this months is “encouraging”.

“This provides confidence that the increase in sales market transactions in London is not just a function of temporary stamp duty relief,” the company said.

Foxtons’ revenue from house sales is up 114% to £38 million so far this year, benefiting from the stamp duty holiday that came to an end last month.

CEO Nic Budden said: “The sales business has had a strong year reflecting market share growth, increasing prices and transaction volumes which have been at their highest levels since 2016.”

In lettings, Foxtons said rents in London had rapidly bounced back to pre-pandemic levels as a surge of movers fought over limited supply.

“The lettings market in London started the third quarter with an excess supply of listings and with rents in the first half of the year down 9% on pre-pandemic levels,” Foxtons said. “This trend has largely reversed during the quarter, with lettings listings now at historically low levels and rents having returned to pre-pandemic levels in August and September.”

Budden said: “In the third quarter we helped record numbers of tenants find suitable properties as many returned to pre-pandemic work or study arrangements.”

Momentum in both of the key divisions helped Foxtons’ revenue surge 50% across the group to £103.6 million in the first nine months of the year. Income is 24% above pre-pandemic levels.

CEO Nic Budden said: “We have good momentum going into the fourth quarter, with rents back to 2019 levels and an under offer sales pipeline that is significantly ahead of 2019 levels."

Shares dipped 0.4p or 0.8% to 47.6p.

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