Do you want to work for yourself?
From our first office in Mayfair in 1835 to circa 60 offices in the Capital and 100 throughout the UK and Internationally, we have become the largest single-brand agency in London, and are extremely proud of what we have achieved.
Our network is growing at an incredible pace and we are seeking to continue this growth. The Winkworth businesses are owned and managed by committed individuals who truly get the Winkworth ethos and love the brand. These people are immersed in their local area; they’re part of the community. And that is what makes them successful. Each and every year Winkworth is looking to grow.
We are keen to find new and exciting locations where the Winkworth brand would and should excel. All of our offices are independently owned and operated by our local experts and form part of an extensive and supported network.
What and who are we looking for?
We’d like to speak to you if you are the owner of an existing estate agency, an experienced senior manager in the industry, or an entrepreneur who likes all that the Winkworth brand represents. If you are serious about owning a successful business, and are passionate about what you do – we would love to hear from you.
On joining Winkworth, we will provide you with an established and trusted high street brand on which to launch your business, but this isn’t all we offer. By becoming part of our franchise, you will receive continuous support from the many departments in our head office in Mayfair who will be with you from initial conversation to every day whilst trading as Winkworth. This matters because all of these things ultimately underpin the unique service we offer our clients.
You’ll have the ability to run your own business and tailor it to your unique market. We’ll work with you to source your own staff, and you can direct your own local marketing and advertising and reap all the benefits of your hard work.
In return, the centralised Winkworth team will support you as little, or as much as you like. We don’t have any corporately owned offices, unlike other franchise operations, so we are 100% dedicated to our franchisees. We value every client and work hard to ensure they receive the best service.
The Winkworth Academy offers bespoke in-house training for staff at all levels, from franchisee to office administrator. Our comprehensive and continuous training packages help to maintain exemplary service standards across the group. It also ensures you’re able to recruit and retain talented team members.
Ben Jesty joined Winkworth in 2011 after previously trading as Mitchells estate agents in Westbourne, which had been trading since 1995.
Starting your own business is an exciting venture, however it can also be daunting. There can be many obstacles to factor in to your decision to joining the Winkworth network. Here at Franchising we get asked many questions by potential franchisees. We have listed our most frequently asked questions below. This list is not exhaustive, so if you have any more queries please do not hesitate to call and speak to a member of the team who will be happy to talk you through anything further.
How much will it cost me?
This does vary from town to town, but typically, for a ‘cold start’ franchise, you should budget £125,000 – £200,000 for year one. Factors such as variations in size of site, refurbishment requirements and the competition in the town will change this expenditure. Many commercial landlords require rent deposits that may eat into your capital.
The Winkworth franchise fee is £20,000 for a ten year term.
How long does the process usually take?
From initial phone call you will meet with James Trimble, our Franchising Director to discuss possibilities in more detail. From there, and if both parties deem a partnership to be of satisfaction due diligence will be started on the individual. This process usually takes 6-8 weeks. The big variation in timelines comes from the ability to find and secure suitable premises.
For Independent estate agents looking to convert to the Winkworth network, the process can take approximately 3 months. For individuals looking to launch a Winkworth office as a ‘Cold Start’; the process takes slightly longer. This can be dependent on a number of factors including hiring staff and finding the right shop – usually 4 months (but has taken 4 years before!).
How big is my territory?
Territories will reflect the natural reach of areas – typically rivalling other agencies coverage. Variations in territory size do exist- for example; in cities where the properties turnover on a quicker basis like London, the territories may be less than a mile across, whereas market towns where homes may be lived in for an average of 10 years plus, the territory may reach for miles across.
We have a number of areas that are available for Franchise opportunities. Although we now have over 60 offices within the M25, we still have opportunities to add offices alongside existing and established Winkworth businesses.
Outside the M25, we are keen to add Winkworth offices to compliment those commuter zones that would benefit from the significant number of London relocations at the moment, as well as regional areas that having the Winkworth name would be an attractive proposition for.
We would happily consider most areas, and would welcome a private and confidential chat to discuss further.
How much support is there?
The offices on the high street are the tip of the iceberg when it comes to estate agency. Behind the scenes in Mayfair we have a centralised office dedicated to supporting each and every office regardless of location.
The departments comprise of Marketing, PR, Business Affairs, Training Academy, IT, Accounts, Client and Corporate Services, China Desk, International desk, Compliance and Financial Services.
Can I own more than one Franchise?
Of course! Several of our franchisees own more than one office. Some franchisees have four offices. We will support you in opening another office when the time and position is right.
Can I rebrand my business?
Yes. A number of Winkworth offices joined us this way (Newbury, Petersfield, and St. Albans to name a few). This is one of the easiest routes to go down when joining Winkworth, as many of the key features, such as staff, local experience and that all important shop site is in place. After completion of satisfactory due diligence and subject to contract offer, our Marketing team work very closely with yourselves and the interiors team to bring the look of the office into the Winkworth style – this design schedule can take a minimum of 6 weeks.
How do I find an area/shop?
‘Go with where you know’ is a phrase that rings true with Winkworth. Part of Winkworth’s USP is the local knowledge and expertise our Franchisees have; it is important that you have this in the area that you are opening in. You will find it much easier to succeed if you have an in depth knowledge of your area – not only the transport points and the schools of the area, but the daily nuances like knowing the daily rat runs when valuing a house, the best place to get a coffee, or which park is the best to walk the dog on a winters morning.
Can I sell my franchise?
Yes. Well run offices can be a very rewarding and attractive proposition, not only during the operation, but can also be a very attractive and saleable asset when the time comes to retire or move on to the next chapter. When the time comes to sell your franchise, Winkworth will work with you to secure a suitable purchaser who can take your office to the next chapter.