An online agency called DoorStepAgents.com claims to have set up a service which is both the cheapest and ‘best value’ sales operation in the country.
The agency charges £99 plus VAT and its managing director, Akshay Ruparella, has told Estate Agent Today that the sum covers “a dedicated 24/7 local property expert, For Sale sign, professional photos and adverts on Rightmove, Zoopla and others.”
The site also offers what Ruparella calls an all-inclusive service £299 - which includes accompanied viewings - or offers just the EPC for £90.
The agency’s website lists six property experts - one in each of Manchester and Leicester and four in London - and has 42 properties listed for sale, mostly in London.
The current LPEs are described by the agency as all being former estate agents with High Street firms in the past.
Ruparella says that his service is, for the moment at least, aimed primarily at the capital. To date, it has sold eight properties.
The agency first surfaced in February but went for a soft launch in August and is now launching formally.
Ruparella - who says the online revolution will lead to the “creative destruction” of the High Street, says some existing online and hybrid agencies are “still over-priced” with in some cases a minimum £400 to sell a property.
Meanwhile a longer-standing hybrid agency - Open House - says it now has 100 agents opened across the country, having doubled in size since the start of 2016.
The Warrington-based agency was established in 2010 to offer consumers a new way to buy, sell or rent a property after the housing crisis hit in 2008.
The agency says each Open House agent “has the freedom to run its own business, offering its customers local expertise and a personal service coupled with the reduced fees of an online estate agent.”
The agency is currently marketing letting properties including room-shares as well as properties for sale priced up to £2.699m
“We see to it that all our agents are in prime position to offer all the advantages of a fully hybrid service and that they have all the tools of a traditional agent but can also compete with the most competitive online pricing” says Alex Morrison, Open House operations director.
“We now look forward to stepping on the gas and opening 200 agencies by the end of 2017” he says.