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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Market Share: High Street estate agents crush online firms

New figures released show High Street estate agents taking an increasingly large market share as online operators continue to crumble.

According to the fortnightly update from The Advisory, a consultancy that monitors housing market trends, figures for the two weeks to June 28 show that not only do High Street agents have a massive 97.2 per cent market share, but they also grew their market share over at a greater rate than the three best performing online rivals.

Other figures show:

- the top 10 online estate agents accounting for just 3.8 per cent of all new properties listed; that’s down from a market share high of 5.19 per cent in May this year;

- Purplebricks' market share of the online estate agency sector nudged up from 69.6 per cent two weeks ago to 70.2 per cent now;

- Housesimple, which last week revealed it was going to sell homes at no cost to the vendors, lost momentum and is now tying for second place by Yopa. 

In terms of online agencies’ individual performances, in the past fortnight here are the new listings totals:

- Purplebricks: 2,618

- Housesimple 396;

- Yopa: 396;

- Doorsteps: 156;

- 99 Homes: 55;

- Open House Estate Agents: 40;

- imovehome: 36;

- sellmyhome: 35;

- Emoov: 20;

- easyProperty: 12.

"Reports of the death of high street estate agency have been greatly exaggerated. For all the promises of disruption, the top 10 players in the online estate agency sector account for just a paltry 3.8 per cent market share. If the sector were a house it would be a money pit” explains Gavin Brazg, founder and chief executive of TheAdvisory.

“With this current market share, I can't see many high street estate agents lying awake at night petrified they're about to experience their very own Uber or Amazon moment. Despite their eye-watering marketing spend, Purplebricks' new listings seem to have remained broadly in-sync with the market as a whole. They seem not to be outperforming the market and so it's hard to see how they're going to grow the company to take double digit market share."

You can see the full report from TheAdvisory here.

Meanwhile the Daily Telegraph over the weekend predicted that Purplebricks would post losses of £51m when on Wednesday it reports its financial performance for the 12 months to the end of April.

This compares with a loss of £26m for the year before.

  • icon

    It's looking like it's going to be a VERY painful week for the online-only agencies.

  • icon

    I worked for on of the online agents for 6 months last year. It was the worst mistake I ever made and am very happy to be back in high street agency.

  • icon

    Disruption is one thing. Giving people choice is good, but promoting yourself by slagging off the genuine, hardworking high street agents is something else. You set yourself up for a fall, so don't be surprised if people take great pleasure when things get tough.

  • Tony Sinclair

    Alas and alack... Cracks in Hybrid agent land are turning into fissures. A great storm is gathering on the horizon as a seismic eruption of epic proportions prepares to unleash itself across the hybrid sector in 2020 AD.

    The Brexit fiasco has started to sort the wheat from the chaff. Fundamental yet simple flaws in the system are still being ignored. Agents who venture into the online world quickly realize there is no promised pot of gold at the end of the rainbow after all. Financially battered, bruised and exhausted they return to the safe cocoon of the traditional agent structure which has stood the test of time.

    The turnover of staff and agents is increasing to mind-boggling heights. Recruitment companies are having a bonanza as they feed on the carnage like hungry vultures. Guileless dreamers are churned through the online machine and spit out onto the scrap heap of broken dreams.

    Tis' not only the agents who suffer either. What about the more important customers who's patience is wearing thin because of an endless stream of new agents who replace the last one and the one before that?

    The same old story is repeated. They start out eager and excited at first. They take the plunge into Self Employment to be their own boss and be free to do things their way. Until they discover they are being micromanaged and treated as an employee. That's when the smiles disappear and turn into frowns and frustration as management push for targets that are, to say the least unrealistic.

    We don't need a crystal ball to see what is going on. It looks like most prospective sellers and buyers are waiting for the Brexit outcome in October when traditionally people start to get their Xmas heads on and the market goes into hibernation until Spring.

    In other words, it could be argued that the property 2019 season has been a washout so to speak.

    So riddle me this... Why the aggressive recruitment drive for online agents who indeed are getting younger and less experienced? Are they trying to stage a comeback or simply looking for fodder to keep them afloat until things pick up?

    As the mists of 2020 AD begin to clear, the online agent carnage will be there for all to see and most of the so-called 'Top Ten' agencies will be nothing than a whisper on the wind because of their own folly.

    Treating field agents with disrespect, manipulation and using them as suckers only serves to further exhaust the already dwindling pool of would be hybrid agents as more tales of woe makes common sense dawn on them. And without them, the whole hybrid shebang will collapse like a house of cards and let the domino effect begin.

    I, therefore, Predict that come 2020 AD we will see a tsunami of failed hybrids as the fall one by one until a mere handful are left to fight each other for survival. Talk and rumors about mergers will be rife. New hybrid models will appear and disappear because the same fundamental mistakes will be ignored.

    Life, destiny, and fate are mysterious bedfellows. While the masses have been distracting arguments about who will win the battle between high street and online agencies, a different phenomenon is manifesting into reality. Something we can already see. Something so simple the online people failed to acknowledge it could ever happen...

    Yes my friends, they simply cannot sucker anyone of decent caliber into working for them as more discarded agents spread their stories of dissent. Working long hours for less money than working in a burger joint.

    After all, how can a would-be online property magnate cut the mustard when their business is interfered with by micromanagement, pressure and unreachable targets dreamed up fairyland?

    Online agents should brace themselves because the storm upon the horizon is growing and getting darker. The ground is beginning to rumble as a warning to be heeded or ignored at thy peril.

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