Humberts, which yesterday launched an online-only option for landlord clients, says it is “not closing the door” on expanding the idea to sales, too.
Yesterday Humberts revealed a fixed fee online-only option for landlords, called Humberts Lettings Direct. Landlords pay £199 plus VAT for marketing of their property on Rightmove, on Humberts’ own website, and on that of a PropTech firm, Propoly, which is financially supported by Countrywide and is providing the technical infrastucture for the online option.
Controversially, Humberts says it can also advertise its online-only properties on OnTheMarket - although that portal has famously banned online agencies from joining.
At any time an online-only lettings client can ‘upgrade’ to a traditional full service option; the online fee will be deducted from the full service charge.
“The lettings side will be evaluated in detail before sales is considered” Estate Agent Today was told by Ian Westerling, Humberts managing director.
“Due to the nature of lettings we believe that Landlords are best suited to this ‘dual’ approach. There are so many variances and potential options when choosing a lettings service and no other traditional agent has quite pulled them together - our aim is to offer landlords the ultimate in choice” he adds.
“We are not closing the door on the sales online option – our aim is to see how the lettings side performs first and evaluate market conditions before we consider how online sales might perform” concludes Westerling.
HLD’s service also includes preparation of a tenancy agreement, registering a deposit, tenant reference, legal protection insurance and access to another online portal which Humberts’ launch statement describes as being “an online portal for landlord/tenant interactions.”
HLD and the agency’s traditional lettings department are being headed up by Suzanne Diamond who previously led a 21-branch lettings operation at Curchods.