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‘Get real’ about Rightmove’s power, agent tells portal’s critics

Lee Pendleton says Rightmove has been a leads and marketing powerhouse for his and many other agency businesses over the years – and will continue to be so.

Nigel Lewis


Estate agency founder Lee Pendleton has bucked the trend for agents to criticise Rightmove and has urged fellow agents to remember how the portal has transformed the industry over the past 20 years for the better, and that it’s far too powerful to be challenged now.

He says Rightmove should be supported for its fees suspension policy during lockdown and that someone “needs to be on their side”.

“They are a massive powerhouse for leads for most agents and we’ve worked very successfully with them for many years.”

rightmovePendleton (left) had a well-publicised run-in with OnTheMarket last year which resulted in his agency, James Pendleton, being kicked off the portal. As well as Rightmove, he agency also lists with Zoopla.

“Rightmove have so much power that they will do whatever it takes to keep agents on side, so all the criticism coming from these anti-Rightmove haters is misplaced, I believe.”

Yesterday the portal revealed that it will end its fees discount at the end of July but then extend the scheme for a further two months, albeit at a lower discounted rate of between 75% and 40% depending on which part of the UK agents trade within.

“I’ve seen all the excitement around the challenger portals and been approached by several of them but I don’t really understand what they’re up to because, unless they’ve got £40 million to spend on marketing, they haven’t got a hope in hell of seriously challenging Rightmove or Zoopla,” he adds.

“You might think it’s cheaper to use these kinds of portals, but is it cost effective to do it?”.

June 24, 2020


  1. I have to agree with Mr Pendleton…

    Yes portals have held all agents to ransom (especially RM) and the pricing structure needs to be revised as we move into the new marketplace, but by the same token RM have effectively set and regularly moved the landscape forward.

    OTM have made no impression really in the market with Zoopla and RM still sitting head and shoulders above their competition.

    For me using any other portal at the moment is “Penny wise & Pound stupid” as all your really doing is building their Portal brand for them with no real added value.

  2. I think it is very healthy to have a debate about property portals and James Pendleton has some valid views and runs a very good business. But, just as I disagree with James’ spin on the market as reported in the national press, I still think we are about to enter a nuclear winter with completions likely to be 600,000 in 2020 not the 1.1m we usually, I also think that what many miss is that Rightmove has not in any way evolved since Shrek and the donkey came to the big screen in 2001.

    Is this significant well, yes, the new portals actually do things, one will be a portal/platform which allows for transactions to take place, rather than go on Rightmove, see a property, go off Rightmove and transact, that is a very old model.

    It is the consumer – the Gen-Z, I buy everything through my mobile that is calling for change and speed, Rightmove unfortunately is likely to be thought of more as a donkey than the first place a twenty five year old goes to do transact property business.

    When the consumer uses other portals as they offer more advantages, then the way mum and dad did things – gets forgotten, take a look around – commerce has been kicked into a new age by the pandemic, digital is here, and old ‘tech’ may well have had its day. Many superbrands – which everyone uses – are now gone – as the agile new businesses who ‘listen’ to their clients overtook them.

  3. I don’t think so. If you really analyse what happens to RM enquiries, I suspect you will find what we did – the vast majority don’t go anywhere.

    Since leaving RM we have saved an hour a day NOT trawling through spurious enquiries from people with no interest in responding to our calls, emails or texts.

    As i have said on numerous occasions, we see RM as more of a property referencing service, where people check to see what house prices are doing.

  4. This man obviously has pots of spare cash that he doesn’t mind throwing down the drain. We left Rightmove in April and haven’t looked back. We are enjoying the extra near £2000 we are saving each month and receiving plenty of quality leads from OTM and Zoopla. We don’t need Rightmove, but I suppose he does being as he doesn’t have the benefit of being an OTM member now.
    If we all get behind OTM they will soon have a £40m annual marketing budget. This is our best/only real chance to rid ourselves of this greedy organisation once and for all. Why are so many hesitating? I can say without a shadow of a doubt, the worst part is making the decision to leave, it’s plain sailing afterwards and you find yourself wondering why it took you so long and what you could have done with that cash you wasted.

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