Rightmove yesterday sent out a reminder to agents about the new ‘anti-juggling’ 14-week rule which was introduced in December.
The reminder emphasised that a property cannot be relaunched as a new instruction within that time-frame, which has been dramatically increased from two weeks.
It said: “If you have a property for sale that you take off Rightmove and put it back on within 14 weeks, it will display as usual but will keep the original listing date and will not go out in property alerts.
“If it has been longer than 14 weeks since the property was last listed, it will relaunch, the listing date will be updated and it will be sent out in property alerts.”
The change only affects sales properties, not rental listings.
Meanwhile, a new and independently developed anti-portal juggling system has been named ‘Ros’ after the editor of Property Industry Eye.
The system, consisting of new software and a £6,000 computer, is in the final stages of beta testing of the detection system launched by Robert May, and devised with help from a small number of agents determined to stamp out the practice.
The system scans property portals, and can do so quickly. At the moment, the data relates only to Rightmove listings, although the backers are working on Zoopla and OnThe market.
The system does not scrape properties, but claims to be able to identify which properties have been ‘juggled’ in some way and who the agents are. It can also identify actual property listings in any given time period.
In the preview of the system shown to EYE, it was very clear who the main culprits appear to be.
There is a truly astonishing amount of further information which is currently only accessible to a small handful of individuals, who do not include journalists. We understand it will be made available to the regulator, NTSEAT, and to redress schemes, as well as to commercial firms.
While the system has been built to combat portal juggling, it actually looks to breaks down information in a number of ways, including at the smallest local level, which could give a one-office high street business information about rivals.