The firm said the remaining 280 will be “keystone branches”, which will be situated in “core locations” across the UK and will be equipped with larger teams than are typically in Your Move and Reeds branches currently.
According to LSL, the larger scale provided by the keystone branches will mean the firm can invest more in technology, allowing each branch to cover a wider geographical area.
The restructure will only impact branches of Your Move and Reeds Rains – there are no planned changes to Marsh & Parsons or the LSLi Estate Agency subsidiaries.
In its strategy update, the firm confirmed it has already begun the process of replacing its legacy in-house developed sales and lettings system with a separate system which was been used by Marsh & Parsons for some time.
It said: “The replacement of the legacy in-house platform will be more cost effective and will enable us to better align our systems across our estate agency brands, enabling us to respond more flexibly to the technological advances being made in the estate agency market.”
Despite this, LSL said it continued to believe that “traditional estate agents will represent the substantial majority of the residential sales and lettings markets for the foreseeable future and that our estate agency branches will continue to remain core to providing the service our customers expect”.
Around 144 of the keystone branches will be owned by LSL, with the remainder made up by franchises. The firm said it has identified a series of locations which “geographically do not align with out proposed network of keystone branches within Reeds Rains and Your Move but which offer positive business opportunities to existing successful LSL franchisees within both brands”.
LSL said that while it remains “cautious” on the property market for this year, it remains well positioned, with its preliminary results to be announced next month.
While the agency side of its business has proved challenging, LSL has invested heavily in mortgage advice over the last year, including purchasing Personal Touch and buying a stake in new-build broker RSC New Homes, as well as backing MortgageGym.