UPDATE 1-UK's Foxtons reviews options for mortgage broking arm including sale

(Adds details of mortgage broking arm, background)

July 21 (Reuters) - London-based real estate agent Foxtons Group said on Wednesday it is reviewing strategic options for its mortgage broking business, Alexander Hall Associates Ltd, including a potential sale.

Mortgage volumes were heavily impacted in the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, before government incentives including a tax holiday and mortgage guarantee scheme spurred a turnaround in the UK housing sector and, in turn, in the mortgage activity.

Alexander Hall provides mortgage broking advice and supports the underwriting of mortgages for new property transactions besides re-mortgage advice for clients’ existing properties.

News website Mortgage Solutions reported on Tuesday Foxtons was in the process of finding a buyer for Alexander Hall, adding that several mortgage advice firms had been approached by third parties on behalf of the estate agent in the last two months.

Revenue in Foxtons’ mortgage broking business fell 5% in 2020, compared with a year earlier, due to reduced market volumes.

Foxtons, which assists people in both renting out properties and selling them, bolstered its presence in London with the purchase of Douglas & Gordon earlier this year. (Reporting by Aby Jose Koilparambil in Bengaluru; editing by Uttaresh.V)