Netflix addicts may have come across Selling Sunset, an American series focused on the drama of US real estate agents selling glamorous properties in Los Angeles.
The West Midlands property market is a long way from LA but two agents who met while working at Purplebricks claim to be making a success out of the same US-style marketing tactics.
Jack Durkin and business partner James Humphries-Stone launched West Midlands-based agency The Avenue in April 2021.
A year later, the pair have been trying to stand out from the crowd by marketing properties using Selling Sunset-style videos.
The agency says this approach has been attractive to sellers and they have even worked with footballers and millionaires to sell their properties.
Durkin says “I’ve always been interested in property and have always wanted my own business. I started out labouring for my family’s business and, to earn extra money, I worked in two restaurants in the evenings and at weekends.
“I’ve always enjoyed being customer-facing. I also worked as a waiter at a local Toby Carvery and had a job I really enjoyed as a trainee property developer before joining Purplebricks in 2018, where I met James, who shared my vision and a passion for property.”
The pair setup The Avenue after becoming disillusioned by the way the property industry had developed, claiming the asset has become commoditised.
Durkin adds: “We wanted to make the whole experience more like a concierge service.
“We do house viewings on a Saturday and rather than the owner showing round prospective buyers, we are the ones who take care of all that.
“After viewings have taken place, we have a day where we accept offers. It’s a slick, hassle-free experience and we employ a creative director to produce our videos, which are presented by our estate agents. “We pride ourselves in selling houses that are a high-spec, not necessarily houses that are worth thousands and thousands of pounds, but ones that are pleasing on the eye with a real attention to detail.”
Durkin fronts the business in the West Midlands and Humphries-Stone oversees properties in their Derbyshire office.
There are currently eight partners but they expect to have at least 20 partners across the Midlands by the end of this year.
Durkin adds: “Every little detail is given careful consideration when we market our houses.
“From the music we select on the presenter-led videos, to the tone of voice used in our marketing materials.
“I love finding creative ways to market homes, to capture a buyer’s attention and create a strong demand.
“My attention to detail and obsession for perfection over every photograph, video clip and written word means that I leave no stone unturned when it comes to selling homes.”
You can watch one of the videos on their YouTube page.