Profits rise for building society

Skipton Building Society, which has one of its branches in Sutton Coldfield, saw improved profits in the six months to the end of June.

Photography at Connells estate agents in Shoplatch, Shrewsbury for Sandy in Advertising, Chronicle House.
This is the exterior of the shop.
Photography at Connells estate agents in Shoplatch, Shrewsbury for Sandy in Advertising, Chronicle House. This is the exterior of the shop.

The UK's fourth largest building society achieved pre-tax profit of £159.2 million from £34.4m in the first half of 2020.

This year the society marks 25 years of owning its estate agency business Connells, which has branches across the West Midlands.

Connells completed the acquisition of Countrywide in March, creating the UK's largest estate agency network of 1,235 branches.

Pre-tax profit for the enlarged estate agency division increased to £80.2m from £17.2m a year earlier, partly due to a strong housing market boosted by Stamp Duty Land Tax relief.

David Cutter, Skipton Group chief executive, said: "At a time of continued uncertainty for our customers, colleagues and their families, Skipton's performance seems a secondary interest while we all adjust to the ongoing impact of the global pandemic. But it is against such a challenging social and economic backdrop that we've seen Skipton's mutuality, agility, and first-rate customer service come to the fore and be reflected in our results."

He added that during the first six months of the year, Skipton had become the UK's 11th largest mortgage lender

Member numbers increased to 1,075,231 at the end of June from 1,061,138 on December 31.

The society helped 16,087 home owners to purchase or remortgage their properties, including 3,932 first time buyers in the first half of this year.

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