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#16 Jonesy

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Posted 29 December 2007 - 03:03 PM

Well the outlook for town centre flats seems less encouraging, i think this is the one listed above.

1 bed flat on Wellington Street - Northampton House.

First sold 2003 £73,950
Resold in 2005 £88,000 (+19%)
For sale at end of 2007 £60,000 (-31% from 2005!)

http://www.rightmove...ls-18174935.rsp?
http://www.housepric....., northampton

#17 Airmech

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Posted 30 December 2007 - 05:42 PM

My little mole tells me that Upton is now suffering with the lower echelons being placed in the HA accom there and the local constabulary are "Quite concerned" about the sharp rise in crime there. It's no suprise really. It looks like it will be a complete slum in 10 years time . If it isn't flooded that is :blink:
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#18 gasket37

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Posted 30 December 2007 - 08:07 PM

I heard that the council bought up the remainder of the Wellington street flats and put the lower echelons of society in there...i.e. all the sh*te. If they are stuggling to sell them at 60K now they must be really bad.

**snigger** - it's worse than that. aren't the service charges on those flats around £200 per month?

Well what did you expect? - still no mention of the 30 jobs gone at just one local estate agent?

I know the local press have this story as one reporter asked me about the story even mentioning the name of the estate agent concerned. :blink:


ohh you tease! come on, spill the beans, please! (PM me if you are shy) :P

was it the one whose name starts with an "O" ; or should i say "O'" as they must have a hell of a lot of staff now what with their head office and so forth.

i think it would be a terrible shame if they went down. not. :lol:

#19 Airmech

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Posted 31 December 2007 - 09:03 AM

I thought O' owned Northampton ! Beatiful view into the multi-storey from some of those Welli street flats Eh!
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#20 HouseDog

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Posted 04 January 2008 - 01:38 PM

http://business.time...icle3129239.ece [ January 4, 2008 ] Judith Heywood, Deputy Property Editor


Fears of big cutbacks for estate agents as LSL closes branches

One of the country’s largest estate agents yesterday announced the loss of hundreds of jobs, sparking fears that the property slowdown will force wholesale restructuring in the rest of the industry.

LSL Property Services, owner of the 290 Your Move offices, revealed that it had closed 12 branches and cut 315 full-time jobs across its surveying and estate agency businesses, after house sales fell in a weakening property market.

The cuts are the first large-scale redundancies in the sector, which employs 50,000, since the property slowdown began late last year.

Dean Fielding, LSL’s group finance director, said: “It is very difficult to see where the market is going to land. Our larger competitors are doing similar things. They have no choice.”

Agents blame a sharp drop in the level of transactions since September for the industry’s difficulties. They believe that if the slowdown continues many of the 8,750 estate agency firms in the UK may be unsustainable, irrespective of whether house prices fall significantly.

Hometrack, the data company, says that transaction volumes have been the first casualty of the recent housing market turbulence, which began in September as Northern Rock’s trouble became public but worsened into the final months of the year.

Hometrack expects the number of transactions to drop 17 per cent this year, down from 1.2 million. Many buy-to-let investors, who make up a tenth of the market, are thought to be holding on for changes that may come in during April, which should allow them to reduce their capital gains tax bills.

LSL said that its transaction volumes, which it had expected to drop by 20 per cent, fell by a third in the second half of 2007. The company, which is in line to make pretax profits of £33.5 million for 2007, says it expects conditions to be challenging well into this year.

That view was echoed by rivals. King Sturge, the property company, said that although widespread falls were not expected the industry faced its toughest year since 1991.

John Socha, the vice-chairman of the National Landlords Association, said that the market was slowing across the board and “the cannier estate agents are acting now”.

He said that, after almost a decade of growth in the sector, the industry was at its most vulnerable in the Midlands.

“It is the places where the cost of entry, such as renting an office, is the lowest that are in trouble – perhaps cities like Leicester, Milton Keynes,” he said.

“In Northampton, a city of 200,000, there are 60 estate agents’ offices, of which 15 branches are owned by one company. I don’t see how that can pay if there is any foot applied to the brake in the housing market.”

Stewart Lilly, president of the National Association of Estate Agents, said that larger agents were first to act when there was any slowdown, as their costs were higher.

He said: “It is disappointing that a lot of people have panicked. We are in for a difficult year, but we have had them before.”

Robert Bryant-Pearson, chief executive of Allied Surveyors, said: “We could see back in October that it was going to be a hard winter, but the mood had lifted with the interest rate cut before Christmas. Now it is the number of transactions rather than house prices that is the problem.”

He said agents that were more heavily focused on apartments and former local authority buildings looked vulnerable.

Shares in LSL closed 1p lower at 138p, valuing the company at £145 million. Its plight also took a toll on the upmarket estate agent Savills, which dropped 22¾p to close almost 8 per cent down at 270p.

LSL, once known as General Accident Property Services, was floated in November 2006, after a management buyout from Norwich Union in 2004. It owns the Chancellors Associates and Barnwoods surveying firms and 140 Reeds Rains estate agencies.

Apart from some South London offices, it is best represented in the North of England, which was the first region to suffer the slowdown. Mr Fielding of LSL said that the cuts were “geographically spread, but more southern based than northern”.

Harris Associates, an activist US investor, has built a big stake in the company, perhaps on the hope of a takeover bid.

Mr Fielding said LSL was currently working on the launch of a repossessions arm.

Meanwhile the Land Registry yesterday unveiled house data showing that prices were up 0.6 per cent in November to an average £186,009.

Seema Shah, a property economist with Capital Economics, said: “Given the lagging nature of the Land Registry house price index, it will take longer for it to show the housing market correction which is now evident in other house price indices.”

-------------------

O' look at that? :blink:

#21 aussieboy

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Posted 04 January 2008 - 09:16 PM

“In Northampton, a city of 200,000, there are 60 estate agents’ offices, of which 15 branches are owned by one company. I don’t see how that can pay if there is any foot applied to the brake in the housing market.”

[Puts management consultant case study interview hat on]

8% of people move each year: 16,000 transactions plus 10% btl = ~18,000 pa

300 transactions per EA office.

Average house price = GBP 200,000

Average fee = 1% = GBP 2,000 less average fixed and variable (per sale) costs GBP 400

Average revenue per agency = GBP 480,000

Average number of staff per agency = 8 (from what I've exerienced)

Net revenue per capita = GBP 60,000

Looks OK to me... unless the 8% figure drops to 4%...

Edited add: Or unless I've made a mistake (or four).

Edited by aussieboy, 04 January 2008 - 09:19 PM.


#22 HouseDog

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Posted 04 January 2008 - 10:51 PM

“In Northampton, a city of 200,000, there are 60 estate agents’ offices, of which 15 branches are owned by one company. I don’t see how that can pay if there is any foot applied to the brake in the housing market.”

[Puts management consultant case study interview hat on]

8% of people move each year: 16,000 transactions plus 10% btl = ~18,000 pa

300 transactions per EA office.

Average house price = GBP 200,000

Average fee = 1% = GBP 2,000 less average fixed and variable (per sale) costs GBP 400

Average revenue per agency = GBP 480,000

Average number of staff per agency = 8 (from what I've exerienced)

Net revenue per capita = GBP 60,000

Looks OK to me... unless the 8% figure drops to 4%...

Edited add: Or unless I've made a mistake (or four).



houseprices.co.uk is showing a total 6904 transactions for the past 12 months for the search term Northampton and 15480 for the search term Northamptonshire.

In any business with a large workforce ( for example: 15 branches and say a workforce of 150 staff) a sudden drop in sales of say 50% over a period of 4 or 5 months could cause some cash flow problems.

Edited by HouseDog, 04 January 2008 - 10:52 PM.


#23 aussieboy

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Posted 04 January 2008 - 11:20 PM

houseprices.co.uk is showing a total 6904 transactions for the past 12 months for the search term Northampton and 15480 for the search term Northamptonshire.

In any business with a large workforce ( for example: 15 branches and say a workforce of 150 staff) a sudden drop in sales of say 50% over a period of 4 or 5 months could cause some cash flow problems.


Good point - and as for any service industry by far the biggest costs are staff costs which mean that cash flow issues quickly become headcount issues.

#24 HouseDog

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Posted 05 January 2008 - 11:08 AM

http://www.northampt...lead.3643305.jp [ 4th Jan 08 ]

Estate agency's job cuts lead to concern

Fears have been expressed over possible closures and job loses in sections of Northampton's estate agency industry.
They come on the back of one of the country’s largest estate agents, Your Move, shutting offices and axing 315 full-time jobs nationally. The cuts are the first large-scale redundancies in the sector, which employs 50,000 people, since the property slowdown began late last year.

The move has sparked speculation about the effect of the market changes on the rest of the industry.

In an article in The Times, John Socha, the vice-chairman of the National Landlords Association, said the market was slowing across the board and “the cannier estate agents are acting now”.

He argued that, after almost a decade of growth in the sector, the industry was at its most vulnerable in the Midlands.

He added: “It is the places where the cost of entry, such as renting an office, is the lowest that are in trouble; perhaps cities like Leicester, Milton Keynes.”

Mr Socha also referred to the situation in Northampton, which had 200,000 residents and more than 60 estate agents, and raised concern about the future of the industry.

But Simon Bond, joint managing director of Northampton-based O’Riordan Bond, said he was confident that current market conditions would see established estate agencies, such as his, standing out from the crowd and increasing market share. But he believed some of the smaller estate agencies in the town would find the year ahead very challenging.

“It is now a genuine market. House prices will remain steady, but the number of transactions will fall slightly. This is because banks are less likely to lend money to people who cannot afford it, and because there are less people who are buying houses to make a quick profit, rather than buying them as a home,” he said.

“This is a good thing, and a steadier market gives more opportunities for good old-fashioned estate agencies going out and actively selling houses. The days of some estate agents just putting a for sale board outside a house and it selling itself are gone.”

The change in the market meant there were more chances for people to get on the first rung of the housing ladder. “We’ve had a good start to the year, and in the first few days of 2008 we have had 174 inquiries, which compares favourably to last year,” he added.

Dean Fielding, finance director of LSL Property Services, which operates Your Move, the UK’s third-biggest chain of estate agents, said: “It is very difficult to see where the market is going to land. Our larger competitors are doing similar things.”


----------------

So no local agent decided to comment on local estate agent job losses ? :lol:

#25 TheCountOfNowhere

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Posted 10 January 2008 - 05:46 PM

If you want a laugh, have a look on rightmove for propertys in NN1 for under 100K...then count then number of places for sale in "wellington house"....could be some BTLs jumping ship, they will never sell until they go at auction for below 60K !!!!

That other stupid city centre development is advertising, forgot the name already, their 50% shared ownership flats are for sale alongside the wellington house adverts...would make me think twice, though 100% of an over priced hell hole for the same price of 50% share of an new build over priced hell hole would be much more attractive.

Also, a friend told me they say the shutting of an estate agent branch in St James' last week, he saw them carrying furniture out !!! Must have giving them something to do for the day. My heart bleeds.

Edited by TheCountOfNowhere, 10 January 2008 - 05:53 PM.


#26 HouseDog

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Posted 10 January 2008 - 07:46 PM

Wow .. "Wellington House" .. there's loads of sub 100K properties for sale .. For fun .. I think I might phone up all the local estate agents and say I'm interested in a property there and see how many I can visit in one day! :unsure:

#27 TheCountOfNowhere

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Posted 11 January 2008 - 10:58 AM

Wow .. "Wellington House" .. there's loads of sub 100K properties for sale .. For fun .. I think I might phone up all the local estate agents and say I'm interested in a property there and see how many I can visit in one day! :unsure:


I was amazed to see so many, definately looks like someone trying to bail out. Too late for that I think !!!!

I wonder how low the prices in that block will go, I think 45K is possible.

#28 Airmech

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Posted 13 January 2008 - 06:27 PM

45K is not only possible, it is quite probable for the ones looking straight into the car park.
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#29 aussieboy

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Posted 13 January 2008 - 09:30 PM

45K is not only possible, it is quite probable for the ones looking straight into the car park.


Handy outlook for keeeping an eye on your car, though.

#30 TheCountOfNowhere

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Posted 13 January 2008 - 10:46 PM

Did a viewing with O-Bond friday , according to the agent that showed me round they did lay off staff before xmas, seems to have been kept very quiet though !!!!

Oh and they're having lots of interested since the new year, been rushed off their feet !!!!




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