So where in the country are estate agents charging 4%? Anyone know?

Does anyone know where in the country estate agents are charging 4%?

The puzzle began after we spotted a tweet by Emoov.

It said: “When it comes to #estateagent fees, it isn’t as simple as using the same fee for all agents. Across the high-street, the commission charged can vary from anything between 1%-4% depending on where you are in the country” >>>”

We found the same claim in a blog on the Emoov site which, as you would expect, said online and hybrid agents “charge much lower, fair fixed fees to sell your home”.

We know of agents charging 1% but we also often hear of agents charging less than this – and we’re also regularly told that Foxtons is the most expensive at 2.5%.

This is easy to check out. Foxtons says on its website that for sole agency in London it charges 3% – this is 2.5% plus VAT.

In Guildford and Woking, it charges sole agency at 2.7% (2.25% plus VAT).

Multiple agency works out at 3.6% (3% plus VAT), whether the property is in London or Surrey.

Stephen Hayter, sales director of myhomemove, quoted an average of 1.3% plus VAT the last time he wrote for us (in 2015) on the subject.

However, he also pointed out that easily the most common range for agents’ fees was between 0.75% to 1%.

We asked Alex Thorpe of estate agency price comparison website about fees – and yesterday he told us the average is just under 1.1%.

He told us that high street agents have been lowering their fees in most places, although there are pockets across the country where agents selling more exclusive properties and under less pressure from hybrid firms have actually been raising their fees.

However, he quoted us 1.09% as the average in the second quarter of this year, down from 1.28% for the same period two years ago.

He told EYE: “This means, based on average UK house prices, it costs sellers £2,467, down from £2,774 for the same period two years ago.

“Conversely, internet and hybrid agent fees have increased to an average of £804, up from £587 in 2016.

“The areas with the highest local agent fees in the UK include Sunderland at 1.33%, Manchester at 1.13% and Birmingham at 1.25%. In London we are also seeing pockets where average fees are higher, for example N1 at 2.18% and SW6 at 2.16%.”

We asked Russell Quirk of Emoov where the 1% to 4% range came from, and whereabouts agents are charging 4%.

He told us that he had taken the range from “this authority source”: 

Here, the mystery deepens as reallymoving actually quotes a range of 1.5% to 4%. We also suspect from its reference to the Land Registry in 2015 that it is not quite bang up to date, and in any case, Stephen Hayter was quoting a lot less that same year.

So, we are none the wiser.

Do any of our readers know whereabouts in the country estate agents charge 4%?

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  1. Eastsidestory90

    There is such a place. It’s a very small village in Berkshire called Inrus-ells-ed.


    It’s twinned with a town in France called ‘IMad- e- itup’

  2. NotAdoctor32

    There will be agents in Burnley with a £2k fee that are selling £50k houses still.  Rare but there will be some! 

    And the North East 😀

    1. PeeBee

      I was paid £1800 on one last month – the sale price was £28000.  6.42% (inc VAT) – do you think that makes me a big, bad nasty man in the EYEs of Mr Thorpe?

      Interestingly, the vendor thinks the sun shines out of my whassname. 

      Two other Agents said she wouldn’t get £25k and were only a couple of hundred quid cheaper.

  3. surrey1

    Maybe a cheap and cheerful letting agent, 4%pcm?

  4. ArthurHouse02

    Mr Quirk stated yesterday on Twitter that he doesnt like sweeping misleading statements, then goes and makes one of his own.

  5. AgencyInsider

    To the seeker of publicity Sensationalism is a best friend.

  6. Countrybumpkin

    Well done Russell for another probing article. He loves it. Anyone that knows him will be aware that even in his spare time he loves ‘sailing close to the wind’ literally 🙂

  7. Bless You

    Irony being foxtons have been lambasted in court so many times they are now almost to honest… online agents and completely confuse asa and the media with expertly handled fake news and leave thousands of homesellers paying upfront and not sold.

    Will go full circle Iam sure but who will be left after onliars destroy an industry. ?

  8. B6RKY

    In our area Reeds Rains have been charging a minimum £2500+vat (£3000). On low price 65k properties that’s massive.

    1. PeeBee

      “On low price 65k properties that’s massive.”

      How much should they charge, B6RKY…

      …and why?

  9. PeeBee

    “The areas with the highest local agent fees in the UK include Sunderland at 1.33%…”


    1.33% (1.596% inc VAT) of £bu99erall isn’t a fortune.

    Of the total listings in SR area postcodes, SEVENTY-TWO PERCENT OF THEM are priced at a figure that wouldn’t warrant an invoice to be raised for £2000 at such a ridiculously “high fee”.

    A Fee, I would suggest, that a high proportion of Agents wouldn’t cross the road to work for.

    And Sunderland ain’t the lowest priced place in the NE by a long chalk.  Other parts of the country can (unfortunately) claim the same.

    Seriously – these people should get out more… meet other people just like themselves – and maybe they will realise the kind of kn@ckers we have to read about on a daily basis.

    Mr Rawlings (who I will refrain from putting into the above clique of special individuals – if only because clearly he does get out from time to time…) stated here on EYE last week “I know plenty of agents consistently exceeding 2%”

    Two percent… Schmoo percent.  Percentages mean diddly feckin’ squat if they don’t put you above the Plimsoll line between Profit & pre-pack.




  10. basher52

    Recently sold something for 50k at a fee of £2400 inc vat.

    Southern England.

    1. PeeBee

      £2k fee, basher52?

      That must have stuck in your craw…

  11. PeeBee

    According to The Quirkster on Tw@tter during a proper ‘handbags’ moment with a certain Mr Pryor (although I’m still #blocked from reading his side of the spatlet…)

    “Shared ownership sales at £35k with minimum fee of £1500 is 4%+”


    eMoov’s NSNF option is £1995.  Accompanied Viewings Package another £300.  The total therefore for someone wishing to take “advantage” of this amazing deal would be £2295.

    Or SIX POINT FIVE SIX PERCENT of the sale price.

    Even your NSPR charge of £895, without viewings, equates to over 2.5% on such a sale.

    You’ve got a flat on the market on my patch – Asking Price £25000.

    You could potentially score NINE POINT TWO PERCENT on a sale like this one??  No less than THREE POINT SIX PERCENT??

    Not sure of your shoe size, Mr Q – but they don’t ‘arf make a splash when you land into pig-**** from a height!

    Am I still your Tw@tterFwiend… or is you gonna #Block me again??

    #To_You (credit: Barry Chuckle)

  12. TwitterSalisPropNews53

    You have to be crazy to pay less than say £1,500 plus VAT to an estate agent to sell a property. Anything less and you can’t really expect them to provide a full on ‘get best price’ service. Too cheap and why would they bother. Naive to think otherwise.

    I say this as I am selling a property now, and I have to keep telling my brother ‘remember, we are only paying them £1500 plus VAT’ for potentially months of selling.

    Go cheap on the upfront selling fee, and you really can cost yourselves £5k, £10, £30, £100k etc on the eventual sale price. I know an Agent who always squeezes more out of a buyer – pays their own fee, and gets the very best price.


    1. PeeBee

      If I may post this “case study” onto yours, TSPN53…

      I wholeheartedly agree with you – but have to disagree also.

      Firstly – in some locations, for whatever reasons, Agents could only but dream of an £1800 Fee.  It’s a tough world out there and there’s always someone prepared to undercut you in this industry – whatever the potential cost to them.

      Some Agents will cut their own throats and lose money to steal the listing rather than let ‘best man for the job’ have it.

      BUT – the good ones will work… and work well… for the best fee they can get.  When you say “Too cheap and why would they bother” – that depends on the animal you hire.  ‘Expensive’ Agents don’t always produce the ‘best’ results.

      They just charge more.  It’s finding the balance; the Agent who gets the best price from the best buyer most cost-effectively to the vendor.

      And now, in that regard – the “case study”.

      Recently agreed a sale at £5k more than the vendors told me they would settle for.  It completes next Friday.

      That’s my fee paid for; Solicitors Fee covered, their upcoming holiday in Turkey not going onto the plastic…. and a few quid left over I reckon.

      It took two hours of ‘negotiations’ on my part – most of which was me waiting for the kettle to boil so I didn’t go back too quickly with a decision – between 6.30 and half eight on a Friday night to agree the final sale price.

      And what did I or my company get out of the extra?  Chuff-all.  Nil.  Nada.

      I did it ‘cos it’s my job.

      And I love my job.  Sometimes.

      I had agreed a ‘Fixed Fee’ of £1800 inclusive – as I said above I wholeheartedly agree with you on that figure.  I won’t work for less… but as a result I DO ‘lose’ some instructions as a result of sticking to my principles.

      Generally, however, I get them at a later date – and always on my terms.


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