Reeds Rains

REEDS Rains agents estate agency based at Market Street in Lisburn remains open this week as an air of uncertainty hovered over the company.

It comes as the estate agency which earlier on Monday issued a statement saying it was closing all its Northern Ireland branches has now said that announcement was not correct.

Reeds Rains says it is “reviewing our branch network in Northern Ireland”.

“We are exploring the opportunity to change the operational model through investment in franchising,” it added.

The company, which has headquarters in Yorkshire, employs 72 people in NI closed branches in Comber and East Belfast two years ago.

“We believe local ownership of the branches in Northern Ireland, but continuing to trade under the established Reeds Rains brand, is the best approach to ensuring the future success of the business and the people working in the branches,” it said.

The Reeds Rains have also branches in Portadown, Glengormley, Newtownards, Carrickfergus, Bangor, Lisburn and two in Belfast on the Lisburn and Andersonstown roads.

The earlier statement issued by the company said the branches would close by the end of year.

However, Reeds Rains said this statement was issued without approval and was incorrect.

The collapse of the construction industry and the property crash has resulted in huge losses among estate agents over the past five years.

Reeds Rains entered Northern Ireland in 2009 when its parents company LSL bought the UK estate agency business of the Halifax.

The estate agency covers the local area including Annahilt, Ballinderry, Ballyskeagh, Ballynahinch, Boardmills, Crumlin, Derriaghy, Dromara, Dromore, Drumbo, Glenavy, Hilden, Hillsborough, Lambeg, Legacurry, Kinallen, Maghaberry, Moira, Maze, Stoneyford and Saintfield.