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I like traditional estate agents, I used to be one. There is categorically, absolutely not anything wrong with traditional estate agency.

At the other end of the spectrum we have online estate agents. But are they estate agents, or are they just offering a marketing service? The promise is of a low, fixed fee and a way of marketing your property to the world via the very same portals (Rightmove and Zoopla) which traditional estate agents use. In reality it’s a compelling pitch. You’re paying a low fee in the absolute knowledge that you will have to get more involved in the sales process, but some people are entirely comfortable with that.

I like online estate agents, because they’ve moved the goal posts. They’ve made us all think. There is categorically, absolutely not anything wrong with online estate agency.

And, supposedly, in the middle of the spectrum we have ‘hybrid’ estate agents, offering the best bits of traditional with the best bits of online.

I like hybrid estate agents, because they’ve been creative and are trying to work out what will appeal to the consumer. There is categorically, absolutely not anything wrong with hybrid estate agency.

So, there are now options for consumers. A spectrum to choose from.

But.

Online agents have an approximate 5% market share, which although it will undoubtedly rise from there, very probably on a week by week basis, it remains a very small market share right now.

Consumers are still choosing either a traditional or hybrid estate agent 95 times out of a 100, so, despite what we might all think, consumers like traditional. For now, at any rate.

My issue is this.

How can an estate agent justify charging fees on a percentage-of-sale-price basis?

Buying and selling, or renting and letting, is a transactional thing.

Selling a four bedroom £2,000,000 house is not four times more expensive for an estate agent than selling a one bedroom £500,000 flat.

So why is the fee four times higher?

Read more about The Future OF Estate Agency.

What is the future of estate agency? Part 2

What is the future of estate agency? Part 3

What Is The Future of Estate Agency? Part 4

The future of estate agency part - An open letter

The Property Ombudsman TSI Trading Standards Client Money Protection Rightmove Zoopla Primelocation Move Bubble