Real estate franchises: industry trends

23 April 2023

Published on Friday April 14, 2023, the Guy Hoquet l’Immobilier barometer presents the latest trends in the sector, some of which are rather unexpected.

The real estate sector is becoming increasingly complex, and the French are turning more than ever to professionals in the trade to help them with their projects. Industry players and real estate franchises are positioning themselves in this changing market. Analysis by Séverine Amat, Director of Press and Public Relations at Guy Hoquet, and Julien Girard, Hoquet Business Manager.

Real estate market trends

While property prices were expected to fall by 2023, and the market to collapse, the figures show a very different picture. Indeed, despite constrained borrowing power for many citizens, prices have not yet begun to fall in all regions. In fact, the average value of homes nationwide has risen by +4.3% in one year (+1.5% compared withQ4 2022).

The Guy Hoquet l’Immobilier barometer notes, post covid, a smoothing out of search criteria on the part of buyers who have revised their conception of the ideal property. At the same time, the economic context has put the brakes on the urban exodus. The metropolises therefore remain attractive, and the job pools are not really shifting. “Buyers are reviewing their search criteria, while sellers are still in denial about a discount, but will no doubt be forced to accept it,” analyzes Séverine Amate.

The Guy Hoquet survey also shows that single-family homes are still very popular with the French. Yet their purchasing power is severely penalized by a scarcity of supply and a rapid rise in mortgage rates. Faced with these facts, “the only strategy for stabilizing prices in the long term, and enabling as many of our fellow citizens as possible to find a home, is to build more, better and more virtuously, and to support the acquisition of new homes,” says Stéphane Fritz, Chairman of Guy Hoquet, in a press release.

Finally, while as the real estate process becomes increasingly complex, 8 out of 10 individuals turn to real estate professionals. Sellers, owners and purchasers alike are looking to a trusted third party to help them navigate this increasingly complex and winding road. “We’re discovering complex concepts such as energy passoir and energy audit. Today, more than ever, the profession needs to be aligned and aware of the external elements that make up the trade,” adds Séverine Amate. This bodes well for industry professionals and franchise networks alike.

Franchising, a model well suited to the real estate sector

In 2023, the real estate sector will have 61 franchised banners and 4,520 sales outlets. “When we ask our franchisees why they chose to go into franchising, the vast majority tell us that they needed support, notoriety and speed. In fact, you’re never as well known as when you belong to a franchise network that puts money and body weight behind this national reputation,” confirms Séverine Amate.

On the other hand, it’s a highly regulated profession, and you need to know and master its inner workings, rules, methods, approaches and offerings. A knowledge and know-how that the franchisor has a duty to formalize and provide to his franchise partners. “When it comes to retraining, what could be better than a franchise network? Our job is to be close to the experts who specialize in these subjects, to popularize this knowledge, formalize it and structure it to transform it into initial training for our network. This is the raw material that our franchisees come for, to explain to their end customers”, explains Julien Girard, Hoquet Business Manager.

Diversifying our offering: bringing value to real estate agents

Shortly before the publication of its barometer, Guy Hoquet announced the launch of its new offer: Hoquet Business. With the deployment of this business offer, the brand aims to diversify its franchise partners and enable them to capture new market shares. The company plans to open 70 to 80 Hoquet Business offices, and no more. This figure corresponds to the number of French economic regions (départements and prefectures). “We’re developing profit centers, and we want them to be long-lasting and sustainable for the partners who decide to join us in this adventure,” says Julien Girard.

He adds: “We’re going to develop places that encourage entrepreneurial spirit! Indeed, while the Hoquet name serves as a pivot between the two activities, Hoquet Business’s offering does not simply consist of managing real estate transactions for business premises. “If you want to open a Hoquet Business, you’re not going to open a real estate agency. They’re two different things. We’re aimed at a clientele of professionals who want to be accompanied by specialists, not by a real estate agent who improvises himself as a business or commercial real estate agent. We deal with company owners who want us to help them enhance the value of their business. We’ll look at the balance sheet, the commercial lease, the possibilities of optimizing the transfer of the business, and so on. So we can’t afford to be just key-doors,” explains Julien Girard.

The Hoquet Business offer is therefore centered around four segments: commercial premises transactions, business and asset transactions, small and medium-sized commercial real estate on the outskirts of towns, and the sale of very small businesses. Next comes BtoB rental management. The brand is already planning to open a dozen practices by the end of 2023.


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