Online agency pioneer Hatched drops its ‘cheap’ image

Online agency pioneer Hatched has rebranded itself away from being cheap to emphasise instead its service.

The old logo said Hatched was a “low cost estate agent”. Its new slogan is: “The smart way to sell your home.”

The company, which operates online but also has five offices, says it has made the move in light of “new entries to the market, offering a DIY (and sometimes even slapdash) approach to online estate agency”.

It says its new logo “aims to highlight the cutting edge approach of a 21st century estate agency, as well as the consumer benefits of using a full service, yet forward thinking, estate agent”.

Managing director Adam Day said: “We used to focus on the low-cost aspect of our offering.

“Although our pricing is just as low-cost as before, we felt our slogan detracted from the high value and quality service we offer clients. Our use of technology produces low overheads, and these savings are passed on to our customers.

“We position ourselves now as more of a ‘hybrid’ estate agency, with the honourable ethics and values of traditional estate agency whilst using smart techniques to maximising sales and always ensuring that the interests of the client come first.”

In other changes, Hatched has relaunched its lettings service, now offering rental management fees of £99 upfront and £50 per month thereafter, inclusive of VAT, and has relaunched its website.

A restructure has created a new holding company, White Space Property Group, which now sits above three businesses – Hatched, Your Mortgage Cloud and HatchedEPC.

Hatched has also announced the departure of director James Venning, who is replaced by financial adviser Chris Moody, who joins as director to oversee the newly rebranded Your Mortgage Cloud, formerly Hatched Financial Services.

Day described the changes as positive, saying they allowed Hatched “to continue as the only true, full service hybrid estate agency in the country that offers sales, lettings, EPCs, conveyancing and mortgage advice under one roof”.

Below, the old ‘low cost’ logo

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and the new ‘smart’ one…

Hatched

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30 Comments

  1. Jonnie

    Right,………erm, nope, I’ve got nothing to say, man changes his logo slightly and does press release, he has run out of things to say – Jonnie

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    1. Rog

      To be fair Jonnie, it’s called marketing.

      All these online agents have PR budgets and it as much about being ‘controversial’ to get column inches, as it is about marketing themselves. Nothing new here. This is probably just some sort of build up story for a ‘controversial’ story in the next few weeks, would be my bet…

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  2. PeeBee

    So… Mr Day dips the very tip of one toe back into the real world.

    Are we surprised?  Yes – I would have to admit I am.

    Let’s see how capable the man who has spent several years burning bridges with those in our industry is at trying to rebuild them…

    Or is this yet another ‘disruption’ effort?

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    1. RealAgent

      Having seen him on a couple of Zoopla corporate socials and the use of the word “smart” could it be that someone else is in fact dipping “their” toe in the water?!

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      1. danny

        So you wherein some Zoopla socials , are you selling to Zoopla ? There trying to take over people… Quick , everyone join On the Market before it’s too late …. Embarrassing

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  3. RealAgent

    This is Adam Day saying  “Me too” or is it that for his firm the IT infrastructure doesn’t make him a purchase option and so he is now trying “Plan B”?

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    1. HawkandChadwick

      They were looking for half million quid of funding about 6 months ago so likely answer is yes.

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  4. smile please

    Leopard, spots, changes, never, A, their = rearrange as you see fit 😉

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    1. Disillusioned

      A fit leopard reaaranges its spots and can now see…..never????

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  5. HawkandChadwick

    Ha! Copied his former Lettings Managers ideas more like. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery though, so thank you for that Hatched!

    Ladies and gentlemen I wouldn’t waste any more of your valuable time on taking this company seriously. A year ago they were boasting about seven offices and more opening, now it’s five. They used to boast about not having branded cars to clients, then leased a load. Inconsistent bunch.

    A hopelessly confused company changing tack every 6 months wasting money and bleeding investment with what might appear to be an apparent lack of leadership, training and management expertise.

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  6. Mark Walker

    Nice to see the cut price bedroom agent having to rebrand themselves closer to a traditional high street agent.

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    1. PeeBee

      “…the cut price bedroom agent…”

      AMEM…!  Mr Walker – how very dare you!

      They’re called “live:work spaces” these days… ;o)

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  7. PrivatePile

    The balance is shifting heavily towards lower cost agencies and this will only snowball with time. Due to the internet every single person knows how much their house is worth approximately. It’s not hard to look at Rightmove, Zoopla etc and see sold prices on the same road or a similar area and compare with your house that you are selling. There are even pictures to compare internally and the garden size.

    My house is worth approximately £800k. I know that in a good market I will achieve more and in a bad market I will achieve less. Fact. When high street agencies charge 1% to 2% plus VAT the fees are an embarrassment. To pay an agent £10k to £18k to take a few pictures, laser measurements and make a few phone calls is bordering criminality. It’s obvious that the internet now does all the leg work, whereas before (10 years ago plus) it used to be the agent.

    Human beings are very habitual creatures but we are (in general) not stupid. Within 10 years the vast majority of houses will be sold via internet based companies for a few hundred pounds. It is just a matter of time.

    Will I sell my house for 1.5% plus VAT (£14,400) or for £400 all inclusive?

    For the sake of £14,000 I’d happily do the viewings myself……

     

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    1. RealAgent

      Thank you PrivatePile for an excellent demonstration of why people need estate agents to handle their sale.

      Step forward the first person that would like to attempt to buy this mans house from him!

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      1. PrivatePile

        If that person offers £825k, I will sell. If they offer £800k I will think about it. If they offer £775k I will say no…..(rocket science only to a select few on this planet)

        So please step forward and attempt to buy my house….

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        1. RealAgent

          I think you miss my point. Some sellers (fill in your name) can be the equivalent of a motorway at the end of the garden when it comes to handling a buyer!

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    2. smile please

      Thats the thing and the issues its not just about viewings!

      We took a property on the market held off viewings, stimulated interested and had a number of offer OVER asking price in the end the vendor received an offer £27,000 OVER asking this is within the last month.

      You (to the greatest respect) or an online agent could not acheive this.

      Also if you have a listed property or a period property with the normal issues such as damp will you be able to hold the sale together? Will you be able to hold the sale together when everybody wants to move on different dates? Will you know an acceptable timescale for searches, mortgage offer to be issued?

      its not just about conducting a viewing ……

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    3. Robert May

      £800,000?  Do you mind if I ask where you got that figure from?  I would like to guess that you will not be more than 70% confident of being within 10% of your property’s open market value.  The fee you are paying to an agent is not an exorbitant mickey take of the costs involved, you are buying a fiduciary duty of care from someone who is being paid to ensure your are getting the very best price for your property within the time constraints of your desire to move.
      An agent’s fee is an insurance against poor advice and a fee for the skills required to give best advice.

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  8. stephenjury

    SellSmart….. now i wish i had thought of that.

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    1. PeeBee

      Care to share what you have actually thought of, Mr Jury…?

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  9. davehedgehog

    Privatepile,

    Please see ‘Comment of the week’

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  10. PrivatePile

    Could an employee of a high street agent please breakdown in detail how exactly my fee of £18,000 will be utilised in order to sell my (one) house.

    Thanks

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    1. wilko

      Easy, approx. £50 to advertise it on Rightmove and £17,950 towards my new Land Rover…….Well I’ve got to get about haven’t I !

      Hope that was the kind of reply you were after?

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    2. PeeBee

      I will – the second after Aston Martin come on here and detail how exactly the cost of their new Vanquish ‘Carbon Edition’ is made up…

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    3. smile please

      PrivatePile, You will find most do a fixed fee on an £800,000 house. Yes some agents will try 1.5% and some are worth it. If your property needs to be in hare and hounds, country life etc with full page editorial it costs.

      However a high street agent will probably do it for 6k plus vat so a third of your perceived cost.

      My bread and butter is 350 – 450k we do charge 1.5% plus VAT but anything larger than 500k we look at case by case.

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      1. PeeBee

        “You will find most do a fixed fee on an £800,000 house.”

        Erm… I wouldn’t, Smile Please.

        I wouldn’t even include the EPC.

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        1. smile please

          Fair play PeeBee as i say some will charge 1.5% or more and good luck to them if they can and can justify it.

          My view has always been a fair fee, which is why we fight for our fee at our bread and butter but will take a view on anything ‘special’

          Personally i would not like to spend close to 10k selling my house and as i said unless bespoke advertising i cant see it justified.

          I was taught by my first boss in sales, imagine the customer as your Granny , would you be happy with the service and fee they paid? – Some of the best advice i ever received.

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    4. Robert May

      Let me have an idea of where in the country you are and I will give you a breakdown. I need to have some idea of ITZA rates and staffing costs for you neck of the woods to estimate  the costs and competition levels where you are.
      There is little point in generalising anecdotal marketing spiel from online agents to make a point about potential cost savings. As with any service industry supply & demand affects commission rates so there is every chance, being  4 times the national average property worth, the average commission levels in your area are  probably well below 1%.

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  11. wilko

    At last one of the onlinies is doing what I suggested they would HAVE to do to have any chance of survival……..They are offering their services alongside high street agencies instead of against high street agencies, and pushing their service levels above cost. Good luck to them…..if their service IS really good then they may do well compared to others in their section of the industry who spend all their time saying how cheap they are …..which the public are not interested in.

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  12. Jonnie

    Isn’t it nice that when the budget agent thing gets chatted about we always have a helpful vendor pop up from no where that is 100% ‘it’s all goin’ online innit’ shame they don’t hang around to talk about other stuff but fair enough, odd thing is it’s hard to explain that a lot of what a good agent will do is make sure they are protected from themselves, for many that’s the bit they pay for and need, naturally I’m sure this privatepile person is not one of these and is absolutely genuine, sane and thoroughly reasonable – Jonnie

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