OnTheMarket this morning announced what it calls “a payment support initiative” for those agents paying full-price membership.
It’s for three months and begins in April. The actual number of agents who will benefit from this is not revealed in today’s statement - many agents listing on the portal have discounted deals and so would appeal not to be eligible.
The news, in a trading statement to shareholders, says: “To help reduce the cash flow pressure which agents are expected to face, OnTheMarket is introducing a 33% listing fee discount for invoices issued in the 3 months starting April 2020. This discount will be given to all OnTheMarket agent customers who are paying on full-tariff listing agreements. It is too early to give guidance on the potential impact of COVID-19 on our results for the current financial year to 31 January 2021. While revenues may be impacted in the short term, the group will preserve cash through the careful management of costs.”
Clive Beattie - acting chief executive following the sacking of Ian Springett - says: "OnTheMarket exists because agents had the foresight to want their own portal in order to control their online marketing cost base. It is the core strategy of OnTheMarket as the agent-backed portal to deliver value and to provide first-class support for our agent customers.
"We are resolutely focused on doing everything possible to deliver value to our customers, both in these circumstances and beyond.
"We are the agents' portal. We understand the next few months are going to be tough and, as such, we believe simply kicking the monthly rate back is not helping agent partners, it's delaying the unavoidable. We believe that offering this discount early will assist agents to control their costs in the face of such uncertain times."