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OnTheMarket fee freeze challenged by new portal saying ‘Why Pay At All?’

OnTheMarket’s selective fee freeze for agents has been challenged by a new portal which asks agents: ‘Why pay at all?’

OTM revealed this week that it would not increase listing charges in 2020 for any agents currently paying full fees, while agencies which list on only one other portal would get a discount. It accompanied this with attacks on Rightmove, urging it to match OTM’s freeze.

However a new portal which says it has 5,000 agents has this morning said it’s no longer necessary for agents to “rely on the benevolence of online portals” and could instead list their properties free of charge.


“With the outcome of Brexit still up in the air and the deadline looming ever-closer, why add to the uncertainty by relying on the benevolence of online portals to 'freeze their fees' when you can list for free?” asks a spokesperson for Residential People.

“Unlike some other portals we don't pledge to freeze fees because there are no fees to pay. No cost-prohibitive barriers to entry, just free listings now and forever” he continues. 

Residential People and its sister portal Commercial People launched in March and is currently live in this country and six others - the United Arab Emirates, South Africa, Bangladesh, India, Nigeria and Pakistan. It is launching later this year in Australia, Ireland, China and other countries across the Middle East.

Last month it announced it had almost reached a milestone of 800,000 listings within its first six months and now it says a previous target - for one million listings by the final quarter of this year - is being far outstripped and it likely to be 1.6m by year-end.

A spokesman for Residential People told Estate Agent Today that “while other portals might roll out pricing pledges and lengthy legally binding contracts … we keep things simple.”

He says agents should not be swayed by “hollow pledges” from major portals.

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    Remember, when something is free, you're the commodity. STOP GIVING DATA TO UNRELATED COMPANIES!!


    as a business, you should always do your due diligence regardless of it being free or not. all your comments have no knowledge of 'property' just a slice of common sense mixed with negativity.

    many companies including ourselves have our business address, emails, staff names on a public website so not sure why you're getting excited about your data.

  • Andrew Goldthorpe

    Absolutely! There is no such thing as a "free" lunch and no such thing as a "free" portal. Giving your data to them for free, with no accountability, for them to monetise and profit from is madness.

    And stop paying for the privilege of giving your data to the corporate and listed portals like RM, ZPG and OTM for them and their external shareholders to monetise and profit from.

    The only solution that works solely in the agents' best interests is the original mutual, PropertyMutual.com - accountable, ethical, independent. Our partners data = our partners data lake. Our profits = our partners profit.


    nice ad.

    I received a 7-day free pass at my local gym, I received 30 days free on Netflix, I received 30 days free on Amazon Prime. There is 'FREE' lunches available but its up to you to cut it off in time to ensure you dont get charged.

    In the case of a FREE portal, even if they decide to charge 5 years later. I would have already generated a ton of leads but still get to decide to leave or stay.

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    • 04 September 2019 09:58 AM

    Surely providing the client us getting something then it matters not that they share their data!?
    I share my data with all and sundry and gave no issues at all if that data is monetised.
    It is the Google business model after all and they seem to be pretty successful!!
    They can have all my data if they want.
    I get so much for FREE from them..
    A fair exchange I think!


    You're a digital marketer's dream!

  • Andrew Goldthorpe

    Data is the hidden value for the investors behind the "free" portals which is why they will always keep popping up. Investors always have an exit strategy. The "free" portal will be sold on for profit or sold to another unaccountable owner and nothing that benefits agents in the long term will have been achieved.

    Of course agents are entitled to give away their data for free but I question what agents are actually achieving in the long term. An agent owned and controlled data pool is an enormous potential asset for the long term benefit of the partners of a legitimate, accountable mutual.


    an agent is achieving leads during the short-term. its called jumping on the bandwagon also known as early adoption.

    as a small to medium-sized agent you should be taking advantage of all opportunities and not worry about 'if the business is going to sell or not' because thats just speculation and its out of your control.

    take what you can, whenever you can.

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    'take what you can, whenever you can'. Good grief.


    Yet another comment with no knowledge of property.

    'Property Pundit'. Good grief.


    Probably started in property before this Sam West character was conceived.


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