Hybrid estate agency Housesimple has changed its name to Strike as it doubles the geographic area where its free-to-sell model is available, now covering Newcastle, Middlesbrough and Sunderland.
The estate agency, which is backed by millionaire businessman and Carphone Warehouse founder Sir Charles Dunstone, has also launched an app that enables vendors to sell their homes via their smartphone.
These changes are being marked by a big marketing campaign including regional advertising on ITV and Channel 4 as well as on commercial radio and online.
Strike has also claimed that its listings have tripled since the agency launched its ‘free’ model two years ago.
“Estate agents are notoriously inflexible. Strike’s mission is to make moving easy. That means we are constantly adapting and improving our service to what people actually want,” says Strike’s CEO Sam Mitchell.
He also claims that Strike’s decision to be free but make money off ancillary services such as mortgage and conveyancing referrals has been a success and made the agency a market leader in the North of England after its initial launches in Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds and Sheffield.
“We’ve sold £1 billion of properties and saved our customers over £15 million in total fees since we launched our free service,” he says.
But the company isn’t forthcoming on why the rebrand has taken place, other than the new service is more intuitive and now accessed via a smartphone rather than its website.
Sir Charles Dunstone, majority investor in Strike, says: “We are so excited to be challenging the establishment with Strike. We believe the way Strike blends people and technology to sell homes for free is a truly disruptive proposition that will lead to a great deal for customers.”