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Countrywide mortgage advisers drive up H1 volumes by 30%

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  • 28/07/2016
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Countrywide mortgage advisers drive up H1 volumes by 30%
Countrywide mortgage advisers arranged 30% more mortgages in the six months to June than they did in the same period last year, rounding off H1 with transaction numbers climbing to 42,944.

The value of mortgages arranged rose by 44% from £5.1bn to £7.4bn year-on-year, the property services firm revealed in its H1 trading update.

Total house sales exchanged grew by 10% to 33,940 with the London division reporting the lowest level of year-on-year growth with a 2% rise to 5,476 sales exchanged.

Healthy Q1 sales were boosted by changes to Stamp Duty while sales in Q2, in the build up to EU referendum, were subdued.

Despite buoyant mortgage and sales activity in the first half of the year, Countrywide posted a 25% fall in profit before tax to £22m. The firm said its profits were dented by a combination of a cooling in the market in May and June, in the run up to the referendum, and investments made to safeguard the future growth of the company.

Alison Platt (pictured), chief executive at Countrywide, said the firm had taken a cautious view in the months prior to the vote and beyond, and was now experiencing a slowdown in its London and residential business. This was more evident in the London, South East and prime markets.

Countywide said the spread of its services up and down the country strengthened the firm’s ability to weather current market conditions.

Platt added: “The rest of the country has fared somewhat better and our lettings business and mortgage trends have been largely unaffected. There has also been a slowdown in commercial transactions, but our consultancy revenues have remained stable.

“This period of uncertainty will inevitably impact the level of transactional activity in the second half of the year and, although it is too early to quantify accurately, we will not meet last year’s result at the EBITDA level.

“Notwithstanding this, and following the significant investment we made in the business in the second half of 2015, we continue to make real progress in executing our strategy.”

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