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Andrews reveals ‘surreal’ Covid experience of one instruction a month per branch

48-branch independent says its business is getting back to normal after a 90% reduction in sales instructions during the darkest days.

Nigel Lewis

andrews estate agency

One of the UK’s largest independent estate agency chains has admitted that it received just 1.1 property sales instruction on average during April for each of its 48 branches.

Andrews, which is one of the UK’s few wholly charity-focused businesses, says it received just 55 instructions across its network during April as the property market felt the full impact of lockdown and Covid-19, a 90% reduction on its normal activity.

But the estate agency says June witnessed a significant rebound and that sales activity is now just 26% down on the same month last year.

It also says viewings also bounced back during June, up 373% on May and that it carried out 6,436 viewings last month of which 30% were virtual.

David Westgate (left), Group Chief Executive, Andrews Property Group, says: “The second quarter of 2020 was the most surreal in the property market’s history, with instructions and viewings at almost zero in April and then rebounding sharply in May and June as the pent-up demand accumulated during lockdown was unleashed on the industry.

“The first half of July has seen activity levels accelerate further and this looks set to continue given the Stamp Duty holiday announced by the Chancellor last week.”

Another agent, Dean Millington of Harwood The Estate Agent in Wellington, Shropshire, believes last week stamp duty ‘’holiday was given the green light by the Chancellor because no one knows what will happen when the post-Covid surge quietens down.

“Agents like ourselves have been reporting a huge influx of enquiries, property interest and good sales,” says Millington.

“The wave has crashed through the property world with buyers presently wanting to buy, buy, buy.

“But does that mean we now move into a second stage of more calmer waters? We shall see what happens next in this never-before-taken journey.”

July 14, 2020

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