“Sellers who do sell through an internet agent could be stepping over the pounds to pick up the pennies.”

An article has today been featured in leading agency publication Property Industry Eye which reports that High Street agents achieve more viewings, more offers, and in almost three-quarters of cases a 5% better price than online-only firms.

The research, from The Advisory – an independent consumer advice group for house sellers – says that internet-only agents are very reliant on the portals to find buyers.

High street agents generate 48% more viewings, 64% more offers, and in 73% of cases a 5% higher sale price.

On a £250,000 sale, that translates to a loss of £12,500, claims The Advisory, if an online-only firm has been used.

The firm clarified last night that its study was looking at passive intermediaries, versus local estate agents.

It is part of a series of ongoing guides, the result of research over two years.

An earlier section of it queries the wisdom of sellers using online agents on the basis that professional house sellers do not.

It says that professional sellers include builders offering part exchange, corporate asset managers, and banks disposing of repossessed properties.

The research says: “Interestingly, we don’t know of any that use cheap online estate agents.

“Instead, they choose to put their sales in the hands of local, no sale no fee, high street estate agents.”

The Advisory is run by Gavin Brazg, who says that he is also a professional seller, managing a team which buys and sells houses on behalf of corporate relocation companies and developers offering part exchange.

He says that what he pays annually in estate agent fees is “not insignificant”.

However, estate agent fees are not his primary concern.

Instead he focuses on a “walkaway figure – the amount of money received from a sale after the cost of selling has been deducted”.

He says that sellers who do sell through an internet agent could be “stepping over the pounds to pick up the pennies”.


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