Countrywide and Zoopla lifted on wave of housing market recovery

 
Kasmira Jefford
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BRITAIN’S largest estate agency Countrywide and online property website Zoopla reaped the rewards of a booming property market with strong sales and earnings yesterday.

Countrywide, which owns more than 50 high street agencies reported a 35 per cent jump in first-quarter income to £157.1m, thanks to strong sales volumes across all of its divisions.

Chief executive Grenville Turner, who brought the company to market last year, warned that the Mortgage Market Review rules, which came into force last month, would be “disruptive to the market” in the short term.

However, he said, based on current its current outlook, it expected to deliver sales volumes growth of between 10 to 15 per cent this year with profits “at the top end of our expectations”.

Meanwhile, property portal Zoopla enjoyed record levels of traffic to its websites and apps during the six months to the end of March with almost 40m people browsing its website on average per month.

The group, which is controlled by the Daily Mail and General Trust, also rewarded shareholders with a £14m interim dividend after adjusted earnings jumped 26 per cent to £18.7m.

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