November 7, 2018   |   Jack Taylor

Trio of On-Line Estate Agents Hit Trouble

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Recent news of several on-line estate agents experiencing trouble could be good news for traditional high street agents.

Online agents Purplebricks’ have this month seen their share prices drop to just 177.7p from a high of 500p earlier in the year with Motley Fool investment blog, claiming Purplebricks has under-performed the FTSE 100 by more than 40 per cent so far this year.

This comes on the back of news that Emoov was up for sale after showing signs it is facing a cash squeeze with un-named sources stating that traditional agents Foxtons were in talks as potential buyers. Chief Executive at Emoov Russell Quirk hinted a few weeks ago in a LinkedIn statement that online agencies may not be able to break through and achieve the market share he once hoped.

This is just five weeks after Connells, a subsidiary of Skipton Building Society and estate agents in the Midlands and the South, closed its online service, Hatched, with immediate effect stating it had “concluded that the hybrid model does not produce a viable economic result”.

Ian Bythell our Residential Director said “Whilst it’s never pleasing to see an enterprise fail these events should make people reconsider what agency is all about and we feel validates Petty’s position.”

He added: “This is good news for conventional, full service, in-person agents like Petty’s who have stood their ground and defended their industry. Whilst we have always embraced and enhanced our online and tech presence, realising the importance it plays nowadays, we also understand that you can’t commoditise personal service. Helping people move house is a complicated, emotional gauntlet that affects people’s lives. It needs the human touch, in person, to help people through what can often be a complicated and sometimes traumatic process and as the areas only Relocation Network Agents we understand that perhaps better than most. The fact that we’re celebrating our 90th year this year I think proves the personal touch is always best”

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