Housing market commentator and buying agent Henry Pryor has stood by a remark made to the Telegraph that too many agents have become “fat and lazy”.
The Telegraph article claims that “British home owners are finding new ways to sell their homes in a bid to combat high estate agent fees, which typically range from 1% to 3.5%”.
The “new ways”, according to the article, include advertising on Facebook, eBay and Gumtree, raffling your property, and swapping your property for another.
The article quotes Pryor as saying: “Expect to see more imaginative ways that people come up with to promote their properties.
“Too many estate agents have forgotten how to sell. Having spent years just uploading adverts on to Zoopla, they’ve become fat and lazy, leaving the door open to new marketeers to do their selling for them.”
Pryor confirmed to EYE that he had been quoted accurately but said that he had also told the Telegraph that “95% of sellers still use an agent due to the reliability of selling what for many people is their biggest financial asset”.
Wording similar to this appears in the article, but is not attributed to Pryor.
Pryor also told EYE: “Other ways of disposing of properties seem to be in vogue at the moment – usually because sellers don’t take the advice from agents who tell them that what they want to achieve isn’t realistic. I’ve done quite a bit of both radio and print in the last few days usually recommending that people hire an agent.”
However, he said: “The problem with many agents is that they don’t nurture a mailing list, they don’t mail out to applicants or to past clients.
“Time and again I get a Rightmove alert before I get the email from the agent and I can’t tell you the last time I got paper particulars. Too many just stick them up online and wait.
“Online agents can do that for a fraction of the price.
“If your agent isn’t going to call their applicants, mail them, and actually ‘sell’ the property, then the online brigade are going to have 90% of the market. Why would anyone pay more?
“Half our industry is sleep walking to oblivion. They already struggle to justify their fee model and, whatever the detractors think, the public likes what they are being offered.”