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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Purplebricks claims huge success on sales, prices and time on market

Purplebricks has released figures which appear to show it is one of the most successful agencies - or perhaps THE most successful agency - in the UK.

The figures are in a report commissioned by the agency and conducted by data company TwentyCi.

Estate Agent Today has not seen the report, and the figures quoted below come from a Purplebricks press release; but the statement from the agency comes only hours after Housesimple declared that it would in future sell homes for free - suggesting that the battle between the surviving rival online agencies is hotting up.

The statement from Purplebricks this afternoon says: 

- the time taken to complete a sale in the UK has increased by three days in comparison to last year (from 57 to 69) but Purplebricks says it’s the fastest selling agency brand in the UK, selling properties to SSTC stage over a week faster than average at 52 days;

- Purplebricks is beating the average time to complete a sale in the UK (168 days) with an average of 165.7 days between new instruction and completion dates; and

- Purplebricks achieve on average the second highest price for a property in the top 10 agents. The report claims Purplebricks will sell a property for over £9,000 more compared with the average listing from Purplebricks’ closest traditional competitors.

The report goes on to say that estate agents are selling on average 291 homes a week or 1,262 per month. But with an average of 1,023 a week or 4,435 per month, Purplebricks sold (SSTC) 3.5 times more properties than the next largest UK estate agent.

The figures also show:

Conversions: Between May 2018 and April 2019, Purplebricks had the largest conversion rate, at 75 per cent, with a market average for the top 50 estate agent brands as 53 per cent. Purplebricks’ conversion rate remained the same as last year, while the top 20 brands average decreased by 10 per cent. “Not only do they have the highest conversion levels, but they also have the lowest withdrawn levels as well” claims the report.

Market share: The report claims that Purplebricks lists the most properties under £1m, which represent 96.6 per cent of the entire market. Market share is strongest in the £0 to £200,000 band and the £200,000 to £350,000 price band at 4.2 per cent and 4.1 per cent respectively.

Vic Darvey, Purplebricks CEO comments in the press release: “The fact that we’ve sold quickest for the second-year running is due to how we’ve digitalised the process, making communication between buyers and sellers much simpler. Using up to the minute data, with a real-time view of market trends, we’re able to price more accurately meaning this speed of sale isn’t achieved at the expense of value.”

Purplebricks has released some supporting information from the report:

TOP 10 ESTATE AGENTS (alphabetical order): Bairstow Eves, Connells, Haart, Hunters, Purplebricks, Reeds Rains, Savills, William H Brown, Yopa, Your Move;

TOP 50 ESTATE AGENTS (alphabetical order): Abbotts, Allen & Harris, Andrews Estate Agents, Bairstow Eves, Barnard Marcus, Belvoir, Bridgfords, Butters John Bee, Chancellors, Connells, Cubitt & West, Dexters, Dixons, Doorstep Agents National, Entwistle Green, EweMove Sales and Lettings, Express Estate Agency, Farrell Heyworth, Fine & Country, Fox & Sons, Foxtons, Haart, Hamptons International, Housesimple, Hunters, Kinleigh Folkard & Hayward, Knight Frank, Leaders, Martin & Co, McEwan Fraser Legal, Miles & Barr, Newton Fallowell, Northwood, Pattinson, Peter Alan, Purplebricks, Reeds Rains, Robinsons, Romans, Savills, Slater Hogg & Howison, Springbok Properties, Strutt & Parker, Taylors, Ward & Partners, Whitegates, William H Brown, Winkworth,Yopa, Your Move

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    What they dont say is that they also have one of the highest levels of price reductions source (rightmove) so their claim on price is distorted as many statistics are to suit the purpose

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    Who wrote this article, Trust Pilot??

  • Russell Quirk

    ‘To SSTC...’. ?

    As we all know, booking a proper sale means different things to different agents. Chain checks, AIPs etc are from my experience of PB, not obstacles to them marking a home as ‘sold’. Therefore the data used here is not particularly representative of success.

    Listing to completion? Assuming the completion is proven to relate to the same agent that listed the property... that’s a rather more definitive measure and may show a very different picture here.

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    What a result PB.
    I can only say.
    Wow.
    Not in my area.
    We call them the Reduce company.
    The only thing they have is there advert telling lies on TV.

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    What a result PB.
    I can only say.
    Wow.
    Not in my area.
    We call them the Reduce company.
    The only thing they have is there advert telling lies on TV.

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    hang on .......but didnt a PB territory owner say...

    Samantha Sullivan, who runs Purplebricks’ Swansea territory, said on social media: “The problem we face are with the sales that complete when clients use their own solicitors. They simply don’t tell us.”

    their claims are laughable

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    And Karl Rusk, former territory owner, said: "“There’s heavy reliance on Rightmove and Zoopla, and there’s little chasing or sales progression which can let sellers down. Negotiation over price goes out of the window and it’s undoubtedly the case that sellers doing their own deals won’t get the sale price that estate agents could get.”

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    The only reason they have a low withdrawal rate is because their vendors are reluctant to change as internally they’re admitting they made a huge mistake and they’ve lost all their money! AAHH CONmisery!

    How can an increase of 3 days take it from 57 to 69 days?
    Also the fastest time to go sold SSTC is because of two reasons:
    1. They don’t bother to check chains properly and go sold regardless.
    2. They never advise their vendors to hang on as they may get a better offer, after all they don’t give a toss what their vendors sell for as they’ve already been paid! With the vendors often being naive they will accept a lower offer than they should as they are negotiating themselves. A decent agent would give them proper advice here but PB simply don’t!
    A conversion rate of 75%?? Different figures again to previous but is this worked out with the same calculator that says 57 + 3 = 69?

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    When this news ? flash came though it read ....... THE most successful agency in the....and I guessed it would be World !! before I opened the link to find it was only the UK.
    Come on PB -you can do better then that! Probably

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    Do they count as an SSTC where another agent sells it after being instructed jointly when the vendor got fed up waiting for a sale.

  • Mike Lewis

    Sold “SSTC” simply means “under offer” and in my business that means that the agency fee is unreliable/unbankable. It is only “sold” upon completion of legal formalities at which point the fee becomes payable. However as we know, the PB model is totally different as every “listing“ produces the fee, regardless of whether or not the sale proceeds to completion of legal formalities. (Yes I know I am stating the obvious!)

    As to solicitors not advising agents when the sale completes, what's new? However, when the selling agent manages the transaction through to completion (we now call it "progressing") then she/he will have usually developed a rapport with their clients lawyer and will in that case know exactly when the transaction has completed.

    I suspect that when a vendors solicitor knows that their clients agent is an online listing service, such as PB/YOPA etc., she/he probably doesn’t think to notify them as firstly it’s unlikely there will be that rapport anyway and secondly the lawyer would probably think that as they’ve been paid upfront already, why should they be (the "agent") be interested anyway?

  • Andrew Stanton Estate Agency Insights And Strategies

    Stanton’s £1,000 Purplebricks Conversion challenge.

    I have never been frightened to put my money where my mouth is, and in response to Lee Wainwrights ex-CEO of Purplebricks statement that Purplebricks completes on 80% of instructions they list.

    I Andrew Stanton – property analyst, consultant and journalist, from estate agency insights and strategies – throw down a £1,000 prize gauntlet to any former or present employee of Purplebricks, who can prove this statement to be true.

    Since 2017, from my own in-depth analysis I proved that Purplebricks only completes on 48% of the instructions they list or less. And I have repeatedly asked for proof that this is incorrect and found no takers.

    I can give you an up to date example, on Rightmove 27th June 2019, Purplebricks had in one area Meridian, a total of 3,159 properties showing as either for sale or under offer.

    1,844 listed for sale, and 1,315 listed sold subject to contract, so only a 58% conversion rate, which allowing for a 28% cancellation rate on the 1,315, gives 946 completions or a conversion rate of only 29%.

    I am willing to lodge £1,000 with EAT, for 28-days, and the first person from Purplebricks, who can show the EAT team proof that Purplebricks does complete on 8 out of 10 instructions they list, will receive the £1,000.

    The only rules are that, the conversion rate must be over a 12-month period, and if any LPE seeks the £1,000, they must have listed for more than 12-months.

    So, Jan to Dec 2017, 96 properties are listed by an LPE, I would require verification that 77 of these addresses completed having been sold by Purplebricks; at any point after they were listed.

    Purplebrick’s in their company annual statements have been stating that they have been completing at a rate in excess of 80%, and some months ago I contacted National Trading Standards Estate agency team, querying this. Stating they probably only completed on 50% or less of property listed.

    Which meant over £35M was paid out in upfront fees from vendors last year, who failed to achieve a sale. The response was that that until the public complained no action could be taken.

    I am not singling out Purplebrick’s about completion rates on property listed, this is just an industry norm that agents only complete on 50% of the properties they are instructed on.

    Given this ‘truth’ perhaps there might be merit in charging a marketing fee on all instructions, based on services rendered.

    Any person wishing to claim the £1,000 reward, please contact Graham Norwood who can act as referee, if I am incorrect I am more than happy to pay up and shut up. The clock starts ticking today the 29th of June.

    I will let you all know if I had to pay out.

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