With yet another online estate agent joining the sector in easyProperty, the growing popularity of the online route to sell in the UK is clear for all to see.
The latest online venture will mark its entry to the sector with a PR stunt through London tomorrow (29th September). The stunt will be in the form of a slow drive funeral procession through the streets of London, supposedly marking the death of the high street estate agency sector.
A three mile New Orleans-style funeral procession, band included, will travel through Westminster, starting outside a Foxtons office and ending at Piccadilly.
The online sector has come a long way since industry leader eMoov.co.uk began selling homes for a much fairer fee than the high street back, in 2010. It is no longer just about providing a cheaper alternative, but about providing a better, more empowering service for the consumer, than found on the high street.
easyProperty may be new to the sector, and as a result not understand how far it has moved away from its previous cheap, DIY image. This swing in the industry is more about reinvention, rather than the death of the traditional sector.
Founder and CEO of eMoov.co.uk, Russell Quirk, commented:
"Our friends at easyProperty today join established online estate agency players, such as eMoov, with a launch stunt. Far be it from us to comment on the nature of their stunt, but there is no denying it will get attention. There’s no such thing as bad publicity, that’s true. But only to a point.
However where I feel that Rob Ellice and his business are wrong is in presupposing the demise of the estate agent. Strangely, easyProperty are indeed estate agents themselves of course, one presumes?
The property industry needs a kick for sure but I do not foresee that we will see the eradication of the high street agent. Our mission is to improve the home buying and selling experience. Not to ‘kill’ estate agents. By encouraging the sector to perform better; to offer fairer fees; greater transparency and, above all, a far better customer experience, I’d rather coax and cajole the industry as a whole than take a dagger to them.
easyProperty clearly have their own view on marketing strategy and this particular style may work for them. But the business of selling someone’s family home with care and at the best price, is a very serious business.”