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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Say No To Rightmove leader demands “no return to full tariff”

The leader of the Say No To Rightmove campaign says that agents are demanding that there is “no return to full tariffs” when the virus crisis ends and a normal market resumes.

Robert Sargent, chief executive of the Acorn Group, says his Say No To Rightmove campaign - which started only a month ago - is already backed by 1,500 agency owners representing some 2,500 offices. He expects that this will reach 3,000 offices within two weeks.

Sargent’s campaign appears to have been key in forcing the hand of Rightmove to scrap its unpopular deferred payment offer and instead agree a short-term 75 per cent fees reduction to help the industry through the Coronavirus crisis.

But that is by no means an answer to the wider problem says Sargent in a new video interview released to Estate Agent Today this morning. Instead, the campaign leader says the “tipping point” is coming in the near future for Rightmove and its competitors.

“The portal model as a whole has to change … The tipping point is in three to four months time when the discounts disappear, the government support for furloughing disappear - that’s going to bring this whole argument to a head” he tells industry analyst Chris Watkin in an update recorded yesterday afternoon.

“We’re already seeing Zoopla changing and OnTheMarket changing to whatever degree they can afford to at the moment” he believes, demanding that Rightmove falls in line too.

Sargent’s company has 36 branches across London and the south east and spends close to £500,000 annually on fees to Rightmove alone.

The interview - kindly given exclusively to EAT by Chris Watkin - is the clearest expression yet of the ultimate objectives of the campaign.

It comes just 48 hours after investment bank RBC Capital downgraded its rating of Rightmove saying: “We are concerned that this degree of [annual] price rises may not be sustained going forward, particularly in light of negative press coverage Rightmove continues to receive from disgruntled agents.”

The video (below) is a key 10-minute watch about one of the biggest issues in the industry right now.

  • John Evans

    RM are ok at £300 per branch with annual increases capped at CPI

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    I know my comments won't be liked.
    But I actually like rightmove, at least they have given me a discount.
    I know that people are shouting about agents mutual giving discounts.
    But did you actually know they are like animal farm.
    In that everyone is equal, just that some are more equal than others.
    I am not entitled to a discount with agents mutual, due to the type of contract I have.
    I guess I am not as equal as others.

    So shame on you agents mutual, stop throwing stones in a glass house, get your own stuff sorted first.
    Rightmove are supporting me.
    Unlike agents Mutual, who I will be binning as soon as I can.
    I did email estate agent today, so they could have the info and look into this.
    But I guess they are more keen on getting a bad press for rightmove.

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    What a very strange first ever post. Supportive of Rightmove. Hmm.

     
  • Marcus Parkinson

    Hi Chloe, It's easy to give a "temporary" discount when you are literally taking the *$£" with your standard fees. We left a long time ago but even on our old fees with a 75% discount it would still be more than what we pay Agents Mutual or Zoopla - so to pretend Rightmove are somehow looking after you negates the fact that they have milked your business for as much as they get away with for as long as you have been in agency. Any property portal is only as good and strong as the number of agents that advertise on them and I think you will find in 3 /4 months time when agents return to the shell of a business with depleted pipelines and a very shaky market and economy many people will
    a) Already have left Rightmove for the interim savings (Still substantial with the discount.
    b) Look at their business model and leave anyway because they need substantial savings and as much as you say you "like" Rightmove I personally thing to a person most people in the industry would certainly concur they don't like us and their "treatment" of us as cash cows will be restarted at the earliest opportunity.
    It doesn't affect us (Thank God) anymore but I would say to any Agents out there you will never get an opportunity like now to make the switch (the customers will follow the properties) and save an enormous amount money - & potential save your business's.
    Seize the moment, trust me it feels like the biggest weight being lifted off your shoulders.

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    Hi Marcus
    I know and understand where you are coming from, but I feel you migh of missed my point.
    Rightmove have given me a 75% reduction.
    Agents mutual, who are shouting about rightmove, have said I am not as equal as the rest. So do not qualify for help.
    That just sounds ironic, that they are shouting the loudest and not offering help

    I will as I have always, use the best portal to gain the best instructions, to ensure I look after my clients in the best way possible.

     
  • Nigel Adams

    I'm happy with Rightmove. They provide a far superior stream of buyers than other portals and their cost per buyer is also lower. They have offered me a large reduction at present and didn't put is any weasal terms like Zoopla who offered to reduce their fee if I signed up for a lock-in period and also agreed not to use RM. This was underhand and to be honest they had a real nerve trying to interfere in who I advertise with. I gave Zoopla one months notice last month and as of today will no longer be advertising with them. It is Zoopla that are the villains in this piece. The leads we did get from them were duplicates of buyers that would have come from RM - I know because I called a group of them and 9 out of 10 were also looking on RM. When we come out the other side I shan't be going back to them

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    Rightmove tells me you have 11 available properties on your books. Based on ARPA, they are each costing you £100 + VAT per month before the temporary discount and you say you're happy with Rightmove?

     
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    Rightmove are not offering everyone the same many agents have been offered 75% discount for 3 months then a free period until next year.

  • edward apostolides

    While I understand Chloe and Nigels point, I'm afraid I must agree with Marcus. RM have milked agencies for many years with an arrogance and couldn't care less attitude and the only reason they are offering these reductions and discounts now is purely because they have to, not in light of this down turn due to the lock down but because they realise and for the first that Agents are really dissatisfied with their greed, this realisation is helped by agents mutual and and the ever increase of news and social media as a voice. I was with RM from their inception and in 2008 with the advent of the financial crash they were not offering discounts then, because they didn't have to even though the market and countless agents of many years standing were on their knees. I would say to both of you don't be won over by a temporary discount and free period, believe me after over 20 years with RM I can tell you nothing is free. We have a chance to break this stranglehold they have had over agents for to long, I really think this time they are genuinely concerned and they should be. They epitomise greed I'm sorry to say. Very few agents will shed a tear.

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