Blackpool based estate agent Ben Moore has started a lively debate on the professional social media site LinkedIn, after posting a video which revealed that he had decided to stop competing with low-cost online agencies such as Purplebricks.
Filmed in a ‘car karaoke’ style as he drives along in his company car (see above), Ben reveals to his followers that he has recently turned down two vendors who wanted to instruct him but who insisted he match the £995 fixed price fee being offered by online agents.
Esme Properties, which is ‘powered’ by the ExP UK technology platform and has been going for three months, is the latest business to be set up by Moore.
As well as working for Purplebricks as a Territory Owner he has started up two estate agencies, Smart Move and Sell Simple, and also worked for two years at Express Estate Agency.
In both cases Moore says the instruction was in the bag after pitching for the work before Christmas but, although it “killed me to do it”, he decided to turn down the opportunity.
“In a past life I would have said yes and just got on with it, but instead I turned around and said that with the amount of value we add, and that we keep our portfolio quite small by design to give the best service, [doing it for that price] didn’t fit within our model,” he says.
“A fair fee has to be fair for the seller and the agent involved.”
The video, which has already been viewed 2,600 times, also prompted a flurry of comments from fellow agents, most of whom supported his move in the face of cut-price fee competition.
“Unfortunately all we do as agents is devalue our product and profession by continuing in this fee war,” one agent from Saffron Walden chipped in.
“I agree a customer should have a fee that is justifiable and fair but that’s down to focusing your attention on the service.”
Watch the video in full.