Estate agents popped up across the capital at breakneck speed last year, with a new business opening its doors once every 1.6 days, according to research released today.
The study by online estate agents HouseSimple.com discovered that greater London now has almost 2,900 estate agents lining its high streets, which equates to an average of 90 in each of the 32 boroughs.
"Estate agents have been making hay while the sun shines, opening more than 200 new offices in just 12 months," said Alex Gosling, chief executive of HouseSimple.com. "It’s not surprising, when just one office can make hundreds of thousands of pounds in fees in a year. London high streets are literally paved with property gold."
Househunters in the City of Westminster are now spoilt for choice, with the number of estate agents in the borough increasing by 27.4 per cent from 179 to 228 over the last 12 months.
Meanwhile, those near Walthamstow and Borough stations do not have to travel far to talk housing, with 18 estate agents within a quarter of a mile of both Tube stops.
|Tube station||Number of estate agents within a quarter of a mile|
|Notting Hill Gate||14|
|St John’s Wood||11|
However, what HouseSimple.com's research did not reveal was how many of those agents were dealing with rental property. Figures released earlier today by the Office for National Statistics discovered that house prices in the capital had risen by 9.4 per cent over the last year, vastly outpacing earnings.
Meanwhile, research released this morning by professional services firm PwC revealed that around two-thirds of London-dwellers would be a renter in 2025, up from a little over half (54 per cent) at the moment.
By comparison, only 41 per cent of Londoners were renting in 2000.