Online agent eMoov recruits more agents ‘on the ground’

Online agent eMoov has taken on three more “Local Property Directors” and looks to be tweaking the shape of its business into more of a hybrid model in what may be a tacit admission that traditional agents have something to offer.

Making the announcement on Linked In, Quirk said that the recruitment represented “a new chapter in the eMoov journey”.

He said that there are now full-time, employed local experts covering London, Essex, north Yorkshire, the west midlands, Coventry, Leicester, Northampton, Devon and north Cornwall.

Quirk told EYE: “I’ve often said that the way that estate agency will look in the future is likely to be a blend of the old and the new.”

Purplebricks uses Local Property Experts who are self-employed. But Quirk said his new recruits are full-time local valuers and listers, with an average of 16 years in estate agency.

He said people with “local feet on the ground” are important to his business and underlined that they are members of staff “not self-employed contractors as used by some new entrants to the sector”.

Quirk also took another swipe at online agents: “Our online competitors seem to be relying on trying to automate everything, or simply to be hands-off and run distant listing sites. And they insist on offering just one way to pay… whether the customer sells or not.”

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8 Comments

  1. RealAgent

    Seems like someone is really struggling to actually find their USP!

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  2. seenitall

    its a race to the bottom for online agents. Have any made any Profit yet?       you know actual real money?

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  3. Eric Walker

    On Line agencies or call centres? The more troops on the ground they employ, the more they are migrating back to the traditional model. Someone once defined on line agents as agents where the ‘whole process is done on line’. It seems to me that more and more, the only difference is an office and reduced overheads.

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    1. Chri Wood

      The reduced overheads was always a myth. Cost of a local office versus cost of national TV, radio and other media campaign.

       

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      1. Shaun77

        Couldn’t agree more. The actual office costs are negligible – the real overheads are good quality, experienced staff. In my town, there are 8 estate agencies collectively employing around 50 staff. Annually, the town generates around 1000 listings, essentially resulting in a staff/listing ratio of 1/20.

        I think I read somewhere that PB expect to do 32,000 listings per annum, so working to the same ratio they would need 1,600 staff to cover this. Assuming an average salary of £25k per annum their wage bill alone would be £40m against income of around £30m.

        I appreciate the employee/listing ratio would probably be slightly higher seeing as they don’t accompany viewings, but not by much. If you stopped accompanying viewings, would you really need fewer staff?

        Surely the only way PB can make their business work is to rely on a vastly automated process which I really don’t think will work. Selling homes is a people business, and the numerous nuances involved require human input at virtually every level.

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  4. GlennAckroyd

    And in other use, Purple Bricks has had £20million wiped off it’s valuation in the last 2 days with a share price drop of 10%

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  5. CPestateagentesq

    Next they will be setting up “central hubs” in local towns where clients and customers can meet their local representative – whilst of course maintining the all important central call centre – they will innovate and offer direct local numbers to the “team” in the local hub. These hubs will be manned throughout the day as well and as they revolutionise and disrupt the industry they hope to have one of these local hubs in each town – that will certainly do away with the high street agents – and as a sign of further disruption they will abolish this crazy pay up front model and blitz the industry with an amazing “only pay if you sell” system –

     

    Crazy times ahead for us high street only people…

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  6. MoveInMoveOut

    True Hybrid Estate Agency is the way forward – On The High Street and Online.

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