An online agent charging vendors from just £99 is said to have bought – possibly for nothing – the high street agent with which it shared an office.
99home, which lists on Rightmove and Zoopla, shared premises in Willesden, north London, with high street agent Propertyhub.
When Eye last covered the story, we quoted industry trainer Julian O’Dell as saying of the £99 (including VAT) fee: “Blimey. Where will it end?”
To that question, both Chris Wood and Henry Pryor independently gave near identical answers, saying: “In tears.”
Yesterday evening, 99home said it had acquired Propertyhub for an undisclosed sum. However, it appears no money changed hands.
Nehal Virani, director of Propertyhub, Willesden, said: “It is a fact, with the growing presence of online estate agents in Willesden, it’s very hard to survive in the current market.
“99home is a very fastest growing online estate agency in UK property market and we feel they will be the market leader within a few years.
“Looking forward to the coming year where the tenants fees ban [sic] it is better we give away our Willesden branch and business.”
Vijay Vashistha, co-founder of 99home.co.uk said: “We launched 99home in July 2017 and are already in top 25 online estate agents. It’s a brilliant opportunity for those independent estate agents who are struggling to secure the business or planning to shut down their agency to join the 99home team.”
Vicky Tevari, sales director at 99home, added: “Having been in estate agency for over 25 years, I have seen many changes and 99home is reshaping selling and letting properties for the better.
“The online agency is the future and traditional estate agents are struggling to justify the fees they charge.”
On the website, 99home.co.uk says it is the fastest growing agent in the UK.
EYE has quoted accurately from the press release of yesterday evening.
Make of it what you will.