Big sales boost for Foxtons but Q2 looks ‘challenging’

Foxtons has reported a chunky rise in sales commissions in Q1 as buyers rushed to complete before the April stamp duty deadline.

foxtons_logo_landscape_white_largeTotal group revenue worked out at £38.4m in the year to 31st March, up 16.2% on the same period last year. A 28.5% boost in property sales commissions was the big driver, said the firm, as transactions were pushed through before the introduction of the 3% stamp duty surcharge on buy-to-let investments and second homes on April 1st.

As such, it sounds like the Q2 sales pipeline is looking somewhat thinner than last year.

Q1 lettings revenue was around the same as last year as tenants continued to renew existing tenancies and sign up to longer tenancies. Meanwhile, mortgage arm Alexander Hall posted another big rise in revenue for the quarter (57.6%).

Four new branches have been opened so far this year in Loughton, New Malden, Sutton and Fulham (Bishops Park), taking the network up to 62 branches. Three more offices are scheduled to open in 2016, all outside Zone 1.

Nic Budden, CEO: “We have had a strong start to the year with a record first quarter driven by a number of sales transactions being brought forward before the introduction of the additional stamp duty surcharge on buy-to-let properties. Nevertheless, we expect the first half of the year to be challenging with a reduced sales pipeline entering into Q2 and the underlying short term impact on transaction volumes from the uncertainty around the European referendum. Our expansion strategy remains on track as we continue to increase our market share in outer London.”