An estate agent has taken to social media to criticise ‘high-profile’ competitors boasting about viewings, sales agreed and exchanges during the lockdown.
Ellie Rees runs ethical estate agency Brickworks in central London, which she founded six years ago with partner Rex Siney as an agency with a commitment to a ‘new, ethical style of buying and selling houses’ that is ‘not a marketing ploy…but genuine’, its website says.
In a blog posted to LinkedIn, Ellie says she is uncomfortable with competitors who have been flouting lockdown viewings and business activity rules during the crisis.
“Of course, business must go on. We all want to protect our livelihoods, and estate agents are no exception.
“We’re standing by our clients and keeping things on track. It’s what we promised, so it’s what we’ll do. But it shouldn’t warrant air-punching and back-slapping. That behaviour is tone deaf in the extreme at a time when people are losing their jobs – and their lives.
“And it reinforces the stereotype of estate agents as unscrupulous sorts who only want to line their pockets. As millions of us have learned recently, ‘home’ means so much more than an asset.
“Beating your chest about business as usual is missing the point. Potential clients will see right through it. The world has changed; we’re going to have to change with it.
“It’s OK to be proud of achievements. But to do so without awareness of context is to risk alienating the very people you want to engage.
“Let’s not miss the chance to be better at what we do, or forget what we have learned during the lockdown.”