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Foxtons Share Price And The Housing Market - Merged

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Would have thought asking prices dropping would be increasing transactions? Asking prices will have to fall a long way, but you would think all the EA`s would be shouting for people to drop their asking prices?

That didn't really happen in 2008 either, when I thought it would. EAs... well a scene from The Firm (1988) comes to mind, although I only saw it once on TV many years ago... and that was Golden Boom of the time, although I only saw it once on TV...

You'd want an EA like that.... Gary Oldman. Blunt and cold, but this time to sellers - "This is the score, price is this - get lost and find some other mug if you expect us to market it for more - waste of our time and and money." They did turn in 1990 onwards didn't they? EAs got way more harder with sellers.

Ah.. I must have caught the film from the very beginning - it's the very opening scene.


Prices fell on very little volume... they shouldn't have been working 10 times harder, but pulling together to give valuations at lower prices, so they could make plenty more transactions, imo - including to myself and members of my own family, all here with good deposits towards buying... at the right price.

Behind the hyperbole is desperation. Recent figures from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) show the number of houses changing hands has collapsed to its lowest level in 30 years. In the current market Foxtons, like every other estate agent in the country, must work 10 times as hard because it makes fees only on sales.

2008: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/constructionandproperty/2791638/Countrywide-and-Foxtons-have-more-than-property-on-their-books.html

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Although maybe there was some of it in 2008 - not a lot; perhaps a bit of a polite.. if you wouldn't mind just reducing it a little bit sir.

2009 6% to 0.5% +QE £multi-billions and crash averted, to 30% above 2007 peak now and back to forever HPI.. mobfant not enough properties, London is everything, too much demand. (Will they ever say hello to tighter credit - buyer debt/price revulsion?)


...Even before the events of the past months property sales in London were down by more than half on last year. Now the fall is thought closer to 75 per cent. On a 100m stretch of street in affluent Islington north London three estate agents have closed down in the past year.

And there isn't much more room for optimism among the estate agents still in business. "If you went around the area now I would defy you to find one sold board on any road," admits Paul Siani, owner of Anthony Garfield &Co. His sales are down around 70 per cent; the properties he sells in a month can be counted on one hand. "I have never known it this grim," he said. "This is definitely the worst it has been." But Mr Siani is convinced he will survive. He has other business interests - it's the big estate agency chains with their flash cars and glossy brochures to sustain he really worries for.

At Foxtons' expansive offices on Islington Green, most of the brightly coloured chairs remain empty although it's a good place to get a free Coke. A couple of customers wander in over 20 minutes. Liam Bailey, head of residential sales at Knight Frank, said: "It's been very bad since April, but it did seem to be picking up slightly in September. 'There was a sense that people felt things had got as bad as they were going to. But since Lehman collapsed it's got worse than ever due to all the uncertainty. " Lindsay Cuthill, director of Savills, added: 'We're still getting viewings but it's harder to turn those into sales. Some of our offices say they need 50 viewings before they get a deal.'

The stagnation comes after Halifax revealed the average price of a home has dropped 13.4 per cent over the past year. But Marsh & Parsons managing director Peter Rollings said in London real prices were down 20 per cent. His firm last week sold a west London flat for £260,000 for a seller who paid £360,000 for it last year.

Stephen Smith, of the south London branch of the National Association of Estate Agents, said agencies are refusing to take on homes at unrealistically high prices. 'They're telling sellers to lower their expectations or forget it,' he said.


Edited by Venger
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Would have thought asking prices dropping would be increasing transactions? Asking prices will have to fall a long way, but you would think all the EA`s would be shouting for people to drop their asking prices?

They know that in the few years it takes for property to hit the bottom that theyll lose the lot in the meantime.

Wouldnt think too many earn enough to put money away for a rainy day, given that most the under 40s will have huge mortgages.

Edited by Corruption
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They know that in the few years it takes for property to hit the bottom that theyll lose the lot in the meantime.

Wouldnt think too many earn enough to put money away for a rainy day, given that most the under 40s will have huge mortgages.

We know one recent EA buyer bought under HTB, in Southampton. They'll lose the lot quickly if they're making very few sales at all, at owner-ego-prices.

We need buyer side to tighten up, because EAs need harsher conditions to begin to remember how to be tough. Smart owners will accept the medicine, and accept lower offers. If you're going to sell into a bear market... only very few sellers get out a peak price.

I keep thinking to myself - if I was an Estate Agent, would I rather have 1% commission from, say 5 houses a month at £200,000 each, or 1% commission from 1 (if I'm lucky) house a month at £250,000. Doesn't take me long to decide.

Surely it is in EA's interests to convince sellers they have to drop their prices to sell their properties? Or is it that sellers are refusing to believe what they are being told?

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Dumped in last few minutes. Was 7% down till 3.45 ish. All good

So 10.3% down at close - top of the FTSE All Share fallers chart by a country mile.

This would suggest today's announcement shocked the market, but it all seemed very measured to me. Anyone see anything unexpectedly bearish in this: http://www.foxtonsgroup.co.uk/news/2014/08/half-yearly-report.html ?

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if the company feels the need to pay a special dividend it is, basically, saying two things

1. We know that you know that we can't do anything better with the money than you can, so here it is.

2. The level of profits that we have enjoyed to create sufficient surplus to pay a special dividend is unlikely to continue, that is why it is special and not just a bigger interim dividend payment.

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Naturally if you take £13m out this is going to affect the value of the firm, ongoing. Seems to me the major shareholders had been planning for the dividend and sold some as soon as they got it.

Series of lower highs and lower lows. Trend remains down since February.

On verra.

The interims list a by I think 5Sep14 for special div eligibility with ex div being quoted from I think 3rd Sep14. So from what you wrote are they using other financial instruments?

It's late and I may not have my thinking cap on!

This is clearly not advice :)

Edited by Ash4781
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Other news....2/3 of owners reduced asking prices in July....

I'm beginning to think that info is being leaked that has caused the likes of Foxtons to fall in advance of these 'facts' becoming known.

Seems ridiculous that a share price is a 'lead indicator' - surely it should lag, if only slightly.


Tighter UK mortgage rules trigger house-price discounts

You don't live in the real world of the city traders where knowledge can be converted into cash.

I listen to talk sport some mornings and I've heard a couple of presenters bemoan the fact that Neil Warnock, a fellow presenter, took the Crystal palace job when the odd of his appointment were at 33-1 and never told him.

They seemed to think Neil should have told him.

I seem to think they should be investigated by the police for possible fraud in connection with any previous bets made in case they had been given the nod.

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Thanks FT - off topic question, but any thoughts on the FLS data out today?

Not surprised to see negative net lending figure for SME's again, but I don't think FLS has ever really been about lending for businesses. It was all about lowering marginal wholesale rates for lenders and was in reality aimed by Osborne to pump the residential market. I was right that it wouldn't have that great a take up, but I was emphatically wrong about the wider consequences for retail rates (both loans and deposits).

I'm pretty sure it was Osborne's baby (in principle - the BoE may have done the mechanics) and Mervyn King went along with it because he was coming to the end of his tenure as Governor and didn't have the will to fight it, settling for his seat in the Lords which was always going to be awarded if he was a good boy and did what the Treasury 'suggested'.

FLS and HtB have been unfortunate interventions for the UK residential housing market in my view. House prices were gradually declining in real terms (even in wage-adjusted terms) and in due course transactions would have naturally increased as more FTBs felt able to buy, leading to a more sustainable economic recovery.

(This is OT so I won't comment again on it here.)

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Seems ridiculous that a share price is a 'lead indicator' - surely it should lag, if only slightly.

Disagree. It's easier to sell shares than houses. Most HPCers felt the market was topping out in March/April this year.

If we were also bright enough to forsee the massive asset bubble funding for lending / help to sell blew up in London (I wasn't), we'd have been buying shares in companies with fortunes linked to London property in 2012...

...and then surely, sensing top, we'd have started offloading them in March and April?

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Is it my imagination....or are the estate ahents posting on the LSE share price comments now ?

#Desperate and #scared


Somebody seems to know what's going on.

Sorry, you must either be around 30 or missed a decade. The housing market collapse in London and bottomed out around the late nineties. Since them the labour government allowed the banks to get away with insane lending priactices and when it was close to collapse they lowered interest rates, then when it did collapse, they bailed out the banks and when prices were tanking they lowered rates to 0.5%...when the market dies they then brought into FLS the HTB. Off the back of that we now hat the London mega bubble....when it collapses this time there is no where for rates to go, there is no money in the pot to keep the housing pyramid going, if the government print more there and push up the price of food we could well see riots up and down the country. When the collapse comes, like it has done in the past, and has done in countries all over the world it will be swift and hard this time, that's fundamentals for you, they are kind of, well, fundamental.

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