The top-performing high street agents in the UK outperform online agents in all areas including achieved asking price and time taken to sell, it has been revealed.
Research by consumer advice website HomeOwnersAlliance.com found that the top 1,000 best performing agents achieved on average 100.35% of their asking price, “suggesting that sellers can still maximise their home’s potential by selecting the correct local agents”.
These agents also have a much better sales success rate than online agents, the research reveals, and sell 82.42% of homes listed with them compared to 51.98% by online and hybrid agents.
“Sellers who look carefully at their local market before listing their home for sale will probably still be better off instructing the best high street agent in their area,” says Paula Higgins, Chief Executive of the HomeOwners Alliance.
But for those looking for a quick, easy sale with surprisingly high rewards, online agents are an excellent and rapidly-improving option.”
But the performance of online agents versus the whole high street market compares less favourably for traditional agents.
The research reveals that online agents achieve a higher percentage of the asking price than their high street competitors despite charging on average £850 in fees for each sale compared to £3,042 by high street agents, based on an average 1.3% fee.
The HomeOwners Alliance also says online agents sell homes quicker than the average UK high street agent, 43 days compared to 60 days or 40% quicker.
But online agents aren’t as successful – high street agents sell 53.49% of instructions compared to 51.98% by their digital counterparts.
Among the online agents, Purplebricks has the highest success rate (61.5%) while YOPA achieved the highest percentage of asking price (97.07%) as well as the quickest sales (29 days).
“The research from HomeOwners Alliance shows sellers appreciate having access to different options when selling a home and essentially it comes down to personal preference,” says Mark Hayward, Chief Executive of NAEA Propertymark.
“We live in a digital age, and online estate agents may suit some people’s lifestyles.
The important thing is choice, as others will always prefer to use a high-street agent as they prefer the face-to-face interaction, so spending time researching the best option is crucial.
“Most people’s home is the biggest asset they have; fundamentally sellers want to build a great working relationship with their agent of choice and to trust that are seeking to get the best price on the property and will provide great service.”