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Is this the highest paid estate agent in Britain?

An estate agent claims he may be the highest paid in the industry this year - and he puts it down to being self-employed.

Yesterday, controversy raged around a claim on Estate Agent Today by London-focussed agency Nested that its self-employed agents could earn up to £64,000 more than fully-employed ones.

Now a rival company - also promoting the self-employed agent business model - has come forward claiming that it has the single highest earner.


He’s Dominic Marcel who anticipates earning £328,450 this year.

He spent 11 years at Countrywide, working his way up to regional director before switching in 2018 to run his own company - Lion Estates in Milton Keynes and Leighton Buzzard – with support from Keller Williams. 

It has no high street office and he says he has 190 subject to contract sales worth over £60m. 

The total fees agreed come to £739,987 and his 2021 earnings to date are £246,343 based on completed sales. It is that figure he has extrapolated to get to his expected full-year earnings of £328,457.

“I took the plunge in September 2018 to earn what I believed I was worth. £246,000 this year so far isn’t too shabby and now I’m looking to build a team of high-performing agents that will work with me to replicate what I am doing several fold” he says.

“This job isn’t easy, but it is simple when you know how and I’m looking forward to coaching an expanding team and providing them the resources that they need to also earn big. This new way of working means that great agents earn well and customers also receive better, more attentive service. Everyone wins. Joining my team is a way for those worried about lead generation and admin to plug straight in and get earning faster”.

Marcel has three agents working alongside him and says the most recent recruit, in May this year, has already built a pipeline of £46,700. 

The debate over self-employed estate agents has raged for some years now, promoted initially by the surge in interest and recruitment by Purplebricks - which ironically has just moved to a fully employed model.

Agencies still backing the self-employed model include Keller William, eXp, Fine & Country, Hortons, Agent & Home and more recently, Nested; Spicerhaart is launching a version of the model too.

Critics point out that the estimated earnings of the high fliers in the self-employed world exclude the costs that would be covered by employers in the traditional business model.

These costs include insurance, membership of professional organisations and some taxes; meanwhile being self-employed means not having sick pay, a company pension, company car nor other entitlements. In recent times, self-employment has also been an obstacle to securing a mortgage or other loans at favourable rates.

  • Lee James  Pendleton

    Those figure don’t stack up. I’m sure his customers are pleased he’s earning more than a brain surgeon if it’s even true. Which we all know it’s not! Classic case of let’s tell people what they want to hear. Come work for me it’s easy!!!! Surreeeeeeee. Why can’t people just get real. So damaging for our industry. Another Toss story !

  • Simon Shinerock

    The ironic thing is that I learned this model properly while in the Life Assurance business in the 80s and I haven’t joined the growing number of franchises out there. What I will say is that only a very few will be successful and a lot will depend on selection, support and development. From experience, there are even fewer managers capable of building teams like this than there are individuals capable of succeeding. The only way I would join this race would be if I had something tangible to give my people an edge, by coincidence I do but instead of jumping in I’m fully testing and mastering it first. The formula I have found works with new business concepts is Product, Process People, whereas the common approach is Product, People, Chaos (and a desperate attempt to shoehorn some process in later) Watch this space

  • icon

    Sorry to crush this chaps over inflated ego, but he is waaaaaaayyy off being the highest paid estate agent!

  • Algarve  Investor

    I call BS. Even if we're to believe the figures he's talking about, which is very hard to believe, he's not factored in any overheads or other costs, or taxes.

    Given most directors of major corporates earn less than he is claiming to earn, I find it very hard to believe this latest claim. It's doing the self-employed model no favours - these bold and bombastic claims. There is a place for that model in agency, and some are having success, but the numbers being talked about in the last few days have been ridiculous and nonsensical.

  • icon

    Not quite borne out by figures at Companies House to Jan 21!

  • Roger  Mellie

    Well, good luck to the guy! The problem always arises when more staff are needed to help with scaling up, then it becomes more of a desk job than a sales job. Finding staff that meets Marcel's work rate and attention to detail is near impossible which is why so many estate agents are full of mediocrity.

    This is akin to being a driving instructor, there are only so many hours in the day and you can't work all 24 of them.

  • Clive Le Baigue

    why publish this nonsense?
    "claiming that it has the single highest earner."
    is a claim based on a projection
    "Marcel who anticipates earning £328,450 this year."

    I project I may also be the highest one day.

  • icon

    LOL What tosh, if it's real it's turnover but who cares anyway. Another here-today-gone-tomorrow story leaving behind an unpaid loan on an un-serviced lambo and stories about this time next year rodders....

  • Vilesh Rew

    Please can someone forward this guys details to HMRC as they'll no doubt want to tally this up against what he declares to companies house.

  • John Evans

    Is this pure profit or turnover?

  • icon

    Good luck to him; but the Keller Williams offering allows agents to earn much more than 50% of the fee for the high earners so that doe not add up. But more importantly, his total income number is effectively equivalent to a gross office income, he has expenses and as the article states he employs staff. The real question here for UK agency is will the self-employed Estate Agency model take off. it will be the curate's egg of course.

  • icon

    I can confirm this is a load of tosh. I earn more. Actually, I spend this entire income on my supercar collection alone. I’m high street. I consider this man as a self promoting poor man.

  • icon

    A case of over sharing to me

    A lot of well run independent owners would earn well in excess of this-I also imagine that some of those at the top of large corporates earn a lot more although not sure if they are classed as Estate Agents if they are not fee earners? That said if the numbers are right its a good effort.

    Nice clean web site but he has 5 houses for sale.Better get out there this weekend son.

  • icon

    Never knew turnover and profit were the same thing.

  • Sean Newman

    Congratulations Dominic, clearly you are working hard and getting some great results.
    A great example of what can be achieved under the self-employed model.
    For those that don't believe this income level is possible, I can confirm we have a number of Agents earning this level of personal income.
    Is this the highest-paid estate agent in Britain? - Well I will let you know at the end of the year when we can see exactly what everyone has earned.
    It looks like the average fee is around 1.2%, so my only advice to Dominic is to charge 2.5% and double your income 👍🏼.
    Either way, it is a great effort and it is very exciting to see Agents earning life-changing amounts of money, sellers getting great service/results which will only improve the standards in the industry.
    Keep up the good work and I wish you all the best for the future.👌


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