Property sellers shun ‘too-good-to-be-true’ online estate agencies

14/05/2019 09:51:55

If you’ve watched TV ads for online estate agencies you might think their low-cost offers are too good to be true.

A new report suggests most property sellers have concluded that they are just that and have continued to stick with traditional high street agencies.

Despite the huge sums spent on marketing by online-only providers like Purplebricks, fewer than one in ten householders now sells their properties in this way.

And while online agents have seen a slight increase in their market share in the past year, their transactions tend to be for properties valued at less than £200,000.

Paul Burns, Director of Scottish Property Centre branches in Cardonald and Dunoon, said that, despite the hype surrounding the growth of Purplebricks, customers remain unconvinced about the supposed benefits.

“When push comes to shove, most people opt for the well-tried-and-tested assurance of a local, high street agency,” he said.

“Selling our home will, in most cases, be the biggest financial transaction we ever make, and we’re just not prepared to gamble on what might be a fad.

“Most of us are prepared to pay a little bit extra to a local, high street agent to ensure we get the best possible price for our property.

“Having a professional agent with years of experience and expert local knowledge, who’s able to give us valuable, dependable advice will be, for the vast majority of sellers, a price worth paying”

The latest quarterly edition of the TwentyCi Property & Homemover Report showed that market share for online agents was around 7% and in the first three months of this year following a small, year-on-year rise.

The data also showed that the average listing value was around 7.8% lower than their counterparts on the high street.

Despite Scotland showing a 52.75% rise in the past 12 months, market share for online agencies remains just 7.5%.

Paul Burns added: “What is striking is the lack of take-up for online services by owners of more expensive properties because, on the face of it, those people have the most to gain from paying a fixed, up-front fee rather than a commission-based pricing model.

“On the other hand, what we find is that owners of higher value houses are generally less price sensitive when it comes to estate agent fees.”

For expert advice on marketing your home visit your local Scottish Property Centre branch or visit

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