Traditional or Fixed Fee Online Estate Agents?

Traditional or Fixed Fee Online Estate Agents?

by Readers Question

Guest Author

16:42 PM, 17th August 2012, About 12 years ago 8

Text Size

traditional estate agents vs fixed fee online estate agentsHi Mark

I have a question for you and your readers regarding traditional estate agents vs fixed fee online estate agents if you think it’s worthy of publishing.

I’ve never tried these fixed fee agencies that keep springing up, I tend just to stick with traditional agents.

I very seldom haggle with Estate Agents over fees as I don’t want them to have an incentive to sell somebody else’s property first.

I always take a drive around the area and notice which agent has the most “Sold” boards up. They are the ones I talk to and usually do business with.

Have you ever had any experience of dealing with fixed fee or online estate agents or do you use traditional estate agents too. I’d be very interested to hear about your own experiences and also your readers’, especially if you ever tried these fixed fee or online estate agents.

If you or your readers have any other tips or experience to share I’d be most grateful.

By the way, I thought you recent article “Property Refurbishment – A Guide for Newbies” was an excellent overview. I’ve done several buy/refub/sell deals myself and you’ve certainly covered most of the basic stuff. Interesting readers replies too. I like to see more articles about the tax implications of investment vs trading.

Loving Property118

All the best


Share This Article


17:04 PM, 17th August 2012, About 12 years ago

Online only for me thankyou.
I have saved a fortune not using traditional LA
I have just advertised my property for nothing, though I have had to have one of those pesky EPC's done on a new build flat, annoying or what!
I have exactly the same online presence as a LA
What I don't have is the footfall presence of a high street LA.
I might contact some to advise to field footfall enquiries only and then I pay them if tenant passes my referencing.
I do always pay as I am an honourable chap.
Never stitch up your friendly local LA, you never know if you might need them in future.
I do not use LA referencing as its useless.
RGI checks suffice for me at £10 per check!!
This then qualifies the tenant applicant for RGI, up to a month from the RGI check date.
Online agents do offer a full service aswell which would suit LL that prefer a LA do everything for them.

Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118

17:08 PM, 17th August 2012, About 12 years ago

The topic here Paul is Estate Agents and NOT Letting Agents, i.e. Treveor's letter is asking for experience of people using traditional of online Estate Agents to SELL property, NOT let property.

17:10 PM, 17th August 2012, About 12 years ago

OOPs sorry about that never used an online Estate Agent though I would do so after my experience with online LA.

Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118

17:12 PM, 17th August 2012, About 12 years ago

We must be kindred spirits Trevor. I've not used an online only or a fixed fee agent either but i've often wondered. I also think exactly the same way as you in terms of using agents who have sold lots of property in the same area. I also agree with your strategy of not negotiating too hard on fees and removing incentives to sell mine over and above other. the odd 0.25% isn't that much compared to interest which could be clocking up on a vacant, recently refurbished property.

16:49 PM, 17th August 2012, About 12 years ago

Try Great value and genuinely do the job well

8:21 AM, 18th August 2012, About 12 years ago

A controversial view ... perhaps ... but it is on Estate Agency (LOL) ......

If property portals such as Rightmove hadn't been created (by a cartel of Estate Agents by the way) then I believe the demise of the Estate Agent on the High Street would have been as swift as the demise of the Travel Agent.

The world has changed..... and, when property portals allow vendors to post their own property details (like the Sarah Beeny inspired portal - .. then the demise of the Estate Agent will be complete! Hoorah!

People don't buy property via newspaper advertisements anymore (advertisements are only put in the paper by Estate Agents so that the _vendor_ can see that they are doing something to earn their fee).

People don't walk along the High Street registering at every Estate Agency branch anymore (we don't need to ... email and the Internet has been invented to circumvent this).

People don't subscribe to weekly mailing lists of the latest properties available (because we don't need to ..... property portals allow us to easily search for property across all Estate Agents).

My point ...... ?

I would estimate that 98%+ of all buyers are using the property portals to search for property. If the property is on Rightmove etc .... the purchasers will find it ......... so why not save yourself some money and "do it online" with an online agent and save yourself some money!

What value did the traditional High Street Estate Agent (in the pin stripped suit) every add? Not a lot. Why don't Estate Agents look out of the window in the morning ...... because they would have nothing to do in the afternoon! (Sad but true).

Interestingly, I think a major supermarket actually withdrew from launching their online Estate Agency market because the Property Portals deemed that they were not an Estate Agent and so would not be allowed to promote their instructions on the portal.

That surely underlines the power of the property portal .....

13:05 PM, 18th August 2012, About 12 years ago

As an online estate agent , i believe that people should have a choice, and that this has only been available since the advent of the internet and by people who dare to suggest that there is another way to sell a property. 20 years ago high street estate agents generally charged the same % then as they do now, however property prices have more than doubled, so should that mean that they should reduce their fee by 50%. The Industry norm now is advertising on what estate agents call property portals, Rightmove, Findaproperty, Zoopla, Primelocation along with numerous sub-portals. So what is it that online estate agents like New Move do? well exactly the same as an High Street Agent, without the high overheads. But i hear you say we don't have a presence in the High Street. Did you walk up and down the High street when you put your property on the market asking for a valuation, probably not. The same goes for prospective purchaser, they to do not have the time or inclination to go up and down the High street either. All of this can be done from the comfort of your armchair by searching on the property portal. visit for a better way to sell your home. fees start from £399 +vat.

2:46 AM, 21st August 2012, About 12 years ago

When I began letting I used a high street LA to
find a tenant, then soon moved to using online agents who just advertised my
property on Rightmove etc., leaving me to show the prospective tenants
around. Choosing the right tenant is in my opinion key, and leaving this
to someone else is a risk I try to avoid.

In the
6 years I have been letting I have used high street LA's on four occasions as
opposed to about ten online fixed fee agents. I have found the online
fixed fee agents excellent and far cheaper that those on the high street.
I currently pay £20 for an entry on Rightmove via the online agent.
The high street agent charges 3 weeks rent.

only time now that I use a high street LA is when I cannot do the viewings
myself as I am away on holiday. All my properties are now local,
within 2 miles.

answer Trevor's question,

- if you have the time go for
the on-line agent. You do the viewing and it is a two way interview

- if you do not have the time or
are not confident to do your own viewing and administration, go for the high
street LA. Choose the high street LA with as much care as choosing a tenant.

- I believe there are online
agents who will also do the viewings, but I have not tried these.

Leave Comments

In order to post comments you will need to Sign In or Sign Up for a FREE Membership


Don't have an account? Sign Up

Landlord Tax Planning Book Now