The boss of a growing hybrid estate agency famous for its TV show connections has said UK agents should charge more for their service.
London-based Daniel McPeake, European MD of Nest Seekers International which has 50-plus estate agents working for him in the UK across several regional territories, says his firm begins negotiations on commission levels at 3% and that the rest of the industry should follow his lead.
Nest Seekers launched in the UK in February this year and is unusual because it’s key awareness tools is the US hit TV show Million Dollar Listing and Selling Sunset, which features several of its agents.
And like the TV shows, McPeake wants to bring a distinctly American flavour to UK property.
Which is why he concentrates so much on the 3%. At that level of commission, he says, agents can begin co-broking deals and splitting fees to get homes sold.
“For example, if you’re on a high street and you’ve got a £1m house to sell and you’re charging the vendor 1% you’re not going to share your fee with another agent – so you have a barrier in between you and other agents,” he says.
“Almost everywhere else in the world agents openly co-broker deals together to get homes sold because there’s enough fee to go around.
McPeake’s favourite catchphrase is that ‘people who want to be estate agents pitch a fee, and those who are estate agents pitch a service’ and this is why so many low-fee agencies lean so heavily on the portals.
“If you start at 1.5% you’ll soon get pushed down to 1% because if you can’t negotiate your own fee, how can the vendor expect you to negotiate the best price for their home?,” he says.
We charge 3% because we believe in co-broking with other agents – and we’re transparent about what we do with our vendors who understand the 3% they pay enables co-broking and will sell their home quicker and for more money.