Online firm being re-vetted by Rightmove says sellers could have saved almost £2bn in fees

A business claiming to be the UK’s only free online estate agency and which says that UK vendors could have saved themselves over £1.87bn in agency fees in the first half of this year is being re-vetted by Rightmove.

OwnerSellers charges 0% and effectively offers free space on Rightmove and Zoopla – whose logos feature prominently on its site.

CEO Rupert Cattell said that he had done the sums based on the July Land Registry average UK sale figure of £2,818 with 557,400 transactions and an average agency fee of 1.3%.

While OwnerSellers is free, floorplans and photos can be bought for £144 and an EPC for £120. For Sale boards are £60.

Cattell said: “Selling a home isn’t cheap and vendors could save themselves thousands of pounds if they market their property online for free.

“Sellers do not need to rely on high street agents for valuation advice as they are fully aware of market conditions and can do their own research online.

“Selling online through OwnerSellers.com means vendors are in full control of the sale – while we advertise their property on key portals such as Primelocation, Zoopla, Rightmove, all for free.”

OwnersSellers describes its service as enabling people to “sell their properties . . . themselves”.

Last month, EYE asked Rightmove and Zoopla about the business’s listings on their respective sites.

Yesterday OwnerSellers had 42 properties for sale on Zoopla and 45 on Rightmove, including those under offer.

A Zoopla spokesperson said: “We have spoken to OwnersSellers and we are happy they have a compliant model of business.”

A spokesperson for Rightmove said: “They are currently going through our re-vetting process and if they are found to no longer adhere to our terms and conditions they will be removed as a customer.”

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18 Comments

  1. Robert May

    It is a passive intermediary service that is being offered not an estate agency service,  that is fine but don’t  deliberately confuse the two fee structure  to make claims of savings. There are too many people trying that already.

    “Soz, you contracted to list with us,  the small print says selling is a Brucey bonus”  Whack it on the internet, hope a buyer comes a long, Jobs a goodun!

    As for the savings- based on Mr Cattell’s figures  about £935 million would have been  spent  by vendors who didn’t achieve a sale under his scheme compared with £0 paid to no sale no fee agents.

    £935 million is quite a lot of money to pay out to receive nothing at all, no sale, no comeback, nothing.  I wish this project all the success it deserves.

    P.S  recently released  financials  show other firms trying this are apparently burning  more than they’re  earning,  pouring  friends, family, staff and investors  cash up  down the drain at an alarming rate.

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    1. Robert May

      Here’s a supplementary thought,  what happens when the list it and leave it alone, fee – no sale firms run out of money?  The main portals will bear the cutback in spend. Lavish, splash the cash on national  non geographic coverage will have to be pared back to a regional or even bedroom office level as a first step  ahead of a seemingly inevitable demise.  Perhaps there is already a contraction of spend, who knows?

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  2. Trevor Mealham

    Robert – it IS ***NOT*** a passive intermediary as it does ancillary services.

    RM and Z are likely to not allow FSBO in direct as they would be responsible for CPRs.

    But at Mickey Mouse prices why would RM and Z take Joe Public direct.

    Its a joke on agents who face annual price hikes to have budget listers next to agents adverts

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    1. Robert May

      In that case they have landed themselves with a massive problem;  the elephant in the room, the petard that will hang them; they can’t  do both! They either give no advice, full FSBO passive intermediary or they cross the line and become precedent legislated agents with full responsibility to their principals.

       

      You are into laws and legislation Trev, tell me how list it leave it agents can absolve themselves of responsibility for the ‘expert’ advice they give. Any attempt to point to the small print gets into uncertain contract terms territory.

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      1. Trevor Mealham

        Hi Robert. Sorry at the Landlord and Lettings Expo all day in Cardiff. So only just got back to PIE.

        Basically, for doing ‘ancillary’ services they are responsible for the details, CPRs and BPRs (as would have come under old fashioned PMA prop misdescription/which CPRs replaced).

        Also responsible for omissions if their low cost fee fails the time to do the job properly.

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  3. Woodentop

    Having looked at their web site THEY ARE NOT PASSIVE. They fall under estate agency legislation and codes of practice. I note no mention of TPO or redress scheme membership! Are they registered for Money Laundering?

     

    As for no fee, sorry that is a misrepresentation BIG TIME. There business is clearly based on add on sales and would be interesting to see their contract makes that clear, if it doesn’t and they earn any commission they must give it to their customer! As they advertise as a web only agent, they are regarded as no boundary restrictions agent in the UK  and all there marketing will have to comply with fees payable for all towns covered in the UK with the likes of RM & Z …. oh yeah that’s happening!!!!

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    1. Woodentop

      Quote: “If at any time you need help with your sale or purchase or need us to assist you in the negotiation, please call us on 0333 1234562. Our team of experienced negotiators will give you a fixed price quote for their time”.

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  4. GPL

    It’s Monkeys, Peanuts….. and another Brick in the Wall. Good article, Good points raised.

    One just wonders how our industry turned into an Emu…… head buried in the sand?

    From my far northerly perspective it seems as if every tomdickstartup&portal has a voice/pr dept/profile….. except our industry?!

    So…… succinctly? I’m joe public…… Why should I bother using a High Street Estate Agent!

    ……..and when we all come up with something of impact! …….can we as as industry adpot that “Tag Line” and have in our office windows, websites etc…..

    Sure, High Street Estate Agents compete? ……..however do we actually have the intelligence to collectively promote OUR business…… or have we just resorted to “Last Business Standing Wins!”.

    So…… Why use your Local Estate Agent? ……..

     

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    1. Robert May

      The general public aren’t stupid GPL add up how many hundred of millions have been pumped into  losing money and picking up a market share that in itself  is the greatest vote of no confidence ever seen; 2.5% of listings use these disrupters1,25% think they have saved money, 30,000 at least get nothing more than a photo of their home on the internet for a few months and a bit of semi convincing patter

      £25,000,000 is currently wasted on unsuccessful sales, Mr Cattell wants to get that  figure up to close to £1billion.  I  don’t think the average home-owner is  half as naive as the people who think they are naive.

       

       

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      1. GPL

        Robert, I tend to bow to you as the Stats Man (or more accurately, making sense of the numbers) and your intelligent/level approach to articles like this one.

        However, I’m still at the Coal Face, out valuing properties, negotiating sales, driving past competitors for sale boards, researching my sold property buyers as to where they are at in their process and which firm they have sold through etc

        I see the steady “drip-drip” that we all know will be homesellers that don’t get the value of a “Real” Estate Agents and simply want cheap…… however that “drip” is flowing a little more and I maintain that we, as “Real” Estate Agents talk a great deal about our Real Value in the Property Sales/Buying Arena….. yet we collectively fail to DRIVE that “Value” Message home to consumers who are sucked in by the easy “Social Media” Style Headlines & Stats, which are often misleading or untrue, peddled by the PurplePimpleEasyCrapilo Property Listers!

        I turn to the NAEA for instance and ask “When did you last really promote the Value of using a Real Estate Agent?!”.

        I promote my business and drive the “Real Estate Agent” message….. however, maybe I am the fool for wanting our Industry to Positively Promote Itself, Collectively!

        Of course…. we are in competition with each other however, when do we acknowledge who the mid/long term competition is? RM etc don’t promote our industry because they rightly promote themselves as “The Industry”…..

        Anyway, as usual, I go on….. I better get back to selling & listing my clients homes.

        WARNING – this post does NOT contain any AM/OTM ingredients… and is therefore safe to consume. Enjoy:-)

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        1. Robert May

          It didn’t but I am going to stick it  on top, a bit like a cherry.

          Putting OTM to one side, portal juggling, redress and all the ills affecting our industry ought to be the  glue that holds Agent’s Mutual together. Agent’s Mutual should not be solely about supporting the portal. Agents Mutual should be working together to topics such as tackle data harvesting by service suppliers, the  the lies  and false claims  that are doing harm to our industry, its clients and investors in the industry.

          We’ve been running in parallel with Agents Mutual investing time and money to  prove change is possible, that process  and what could be achieved would be far greater if it was part of AM.

           

          An effective AM would have no difficulty in attracting 10500 branch members all committed to levelling the playing field and competing on service not cheap fees and deception.

           

           

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  5. Property Paddy

    OwnersSellers website:

    How do we do it?
    We are turning the market on its head and will be charging buyers a micro subscription fee to receive the full contact details of all properties that interest them.

    So that’s OK then !

    Just wondering how long this company can keep going on tiny amounts of money unless rightmove and zoopla are offering  a HUGE discount ?

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  6. KByfield04

    Dont waste your time or breath people, they wont be around for long. How do these companies even get this press any more?

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    1. Robert May

      One way is to upset a failed vendor from the Wirral who happens to have relations in CAB and  connections to a consumer affairs program on Radio 4.

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  7. Jonnie

    Naturally we all respect Robert’s views and indeed commitment for taking the time to post so often………however, let’s consider a big thing in this article, 40 something listings, doing it for less than the price of a paper clip and a bit of belly button fluff and despite that this lad has got just 40 something listings?

    The High Order of Bellendery has a new member

    Jonnie

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    1. Robert May

      Thanks for that Jonnie, I’m happy to STFU when the people who ought to be dealing with the spivs and charlatans  do something other than  look a bit irked.

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  8. PeeBee

    ‘Yesterday OwnerSellers had… 45 on Rightmove, including those under offer.’

    That was 45 more than they have today!  It says:
    “We are sorry, but the agent or developer’s details are not currently available.
    This may be because:

    the agent or developer is no longer a member of rightmove.co.uk.

    Oh, dear.

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  9. PeeBee

    This firm was one named in the centre of the original breaking news of the #portaljuggle issue:

    http://www.propertyindustryeye.com/property-that-first-listed-on-rightmove-four-years-ago-is-removed-after-admin-error/

    Folk should read that story again.

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