easyProperty licences taken up by over a quarter of Guild and Fine & Country offices

More than 270 easyProperty licences have been secured by independent estate agents belonging to The Guild of Property Professionals and Fine & Country as of yesterday.

It means that just over a quarter of the total number of offices have taken up the opportunity, with 800 offices represented in the Guild and 200 in Fine & Country’s UK network.

Each licence will cost £500 per branch per month, with each territory consisting of some 20,000 properties. There is a 12-month notice period for any branch deciding not to renew.

Following the announcement of easyProperty’s acquisition by GPEA, the parent company of The Guild and Fine & Country, an 11-date nationwide roadshow was held throughout June, detailing the licensing proposition.

Hundreds of GPEA members joined the roadshows with 70% of those who attended returning a Letter of Intent and securing an easyProperty licence.

Jon Cooke, easyProperty’s CEO, said: “The response we’ve received has been overwhelming and we are really excited to have such a significant number of professional, independent agents on this journey with us.

“Currently, we are exclusively offering GPEA members the opportunity to paint the country orange and the future looks bright with so much of the UK covered.

“We aim to disrupt the disruptors by catering to changing consumer behaviours, and what our research tells us is that vendors and landlords want the reassurance of a physical, professional agent coming to their property to provide a market appraisal but they also want to transact 24/7 online rather than within office hours.

“Many also want to have more control of the lettings and sales process, and our model caters to this demand.

“We intend to relaunch easyProperty as a B2B2C operator in early September and we are on track to meet this deadline.

“Between now and then, we have in the works a new marketing and advertising campaign, new website and new operational procedures.

“We are travelling at a fast pace and are proud of the members who have put their faith in our new licence proposition.”

easyProperty licensees will provide landlords and vendors with initial market appraisals, photography, floorplans, property descriptions and, in some cases, viewings, while the easyProperty platform and contact centre will service the rest of what is being called the customer journey.

GPEA’s acquisition of easyProperty, which completed on July 12, was made possible with financial backing from Toscafund Asset Management LLP, who were backers of easyProperty when it was led by founder Robert Ellice.

The Toscafund backing provided to GPEA to buy the easyProperty business is also substantial enough to fund the marketing required to promote the brand and penetrate the market.

easyProperty will be relaunched as a leads-generation business to business offering, with a flotation to be explored in January.

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26 Comments

  1. smile please

    Madness.

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    1. Beam Splitter

      Madness…..this IS EASYPRRRRRROOOPPP!

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      1. AgentV

        One Step Beyond!!!

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      2. dave_d

        https://i.imgflip.com/1t41ds.jpg

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  2. Simon Bradbury

    Impressive..

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    1. RealAgent

      I agree, I think it’s really impressive that nearly 3/4 of the agents the guild list as members haven’t even sent a non committal letter of intent.

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    2. ARC

      Does this mean you think it’s good or bad? Are you one of the members to sign up as a GPEA agent?

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  3. Chris Wood

    Buys another box of popcorn.

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  4. revilo

    ‘contact centre will service the rest of what is being called the customer journey’

    Thrilling…..

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  5. 40yearvetran08

    I agree with Simon, impressive.

    we are in a rapidly changing business, burying your head in the sand or in some cases up thier own rear end and talking through it will not help us adapt to the modern way. We have negotiators who think having a conversation with an applicant is conversing by email, text or whatever except the phone. I tell them they are wrong and they answer me with great results, so who is right. Dealing with people is the important factor, how we get there has changed, accept it or sink

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    1. Shaun77

      This isn’t about the way the agent interacts with the customer. It’s about removing the agent from the process other than to provide a gateway to the portals.

      Very different…

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  6. AgentV

    £500 per month to offer a reduced level of service, give the customer a poorer experience/end result and earn less. Why?

    Rather than easy is this the start of mass ‘lazy estate agency’.

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  7. nextchapter

    I don’t understand why you need this! £500 per month, when you could essentially offer clients this service anyway, from your current set up.  It’s such a small majority of clients that want this online only type of model.  Personally, I’ve always found Guild Membered Estate Agents, unimaginative! They love being told what to do or how to do it in terms of marketing. It’s no wonder so many of them are all over this set up, which only has the same intentions has purple bricks. The only people that will win, are the people at the very top!

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  8. Frown Please

    Can we start using a different word to disrupter? It’s starting to sound odd.

    Too many disrupters disrupting the disrupters disrupting work

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    1. adrian

      Love that! Made my morning that comment did!

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    2. AgentV

      How about ‘Square Wheel Bandwagoners’!!!

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    3. htsnom79

      Sretpursid – like something out of Harry Potter

      Sr Etpursid – like something out of Monty Python and the Holy Grail

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  9. Aaron

    I still don’t get it.

    I would assume most of the 200, if not all, are viewing this as an opportunity to get through the sellers front door and upsell their own brand.

    But i think if a seller wants cheap, they’re more than likely going to stick to cheap, then you have the more recognised names for selling property (sorry listing) such as PB, EM and even Tepilo. So as an agent and license holder you then have a choice to make, do I increase marketing spend on promoting the cheap brand locally or my own brand which actually pays the bills?

    Will easy increase advertising to help these agents promote their new offering? If only 200 license holders take part, that’s only £1.2m generated over the year (I say only, but you know what I mean) Is that enough to compete with the likes of PB etc I personally don’t think so.

    Easy to get sucked into the hype (see what I did there) but I personally can’t see it working. I’d prefer my own brand up outside someone’s home than a brand that simply portrays cheap! And for £500 a month, I’m sure you could dilute your own brand for less if you really wanted to. Good luck.

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    1. AgentV

      Agreed……you could just offer your own ‘basics’ or ‘essentials’ package where owners pay a reduced fee upfront, do their own viewings and negotiate their own sale price….. then you help them follow it through to completion, so still way better than an ‘online listing’ service.

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  10. Peter

    “Currently, we are exclusively offering GPEA members the opportunity to paint the country orange and the future looks bright with so much of the UK covered.”

    Reminds me of a certain mobile network slogan “the future looks bright”. Their network is pretty useless where I am!

     

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  11. aSalesAgent

    “Our agents will help paint the country orange, says easyProperty boss Jon Cooke”

     Too late for that in Essex.

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  12. smile please

    I assume with the license at £500 p.m. working as a self employed distributor for Easyproperty the “franchisee’s” will, as it is a second brand they are offering need to pay for additional redress and PI?

    Also assuming these are set territories Rightmove and Zoopla will be well within their rights to change a subscription fee. Does this come out of the £500 or in addition?

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  13. Ttop

    Agree with Aaron .

    Most low cost agents increase their fees at some point and will get ever increasingly associated with a purple type service .How many agents have raced aware from the term online already ! Several groups have tried “lite” versions and pulled them .

    If most agents upsell to their own services how does “orange”get traction ? –

    so huge amounts of money will be spent on orange with success being it dosnt appear  .

    Are/will investors be investing in future brand reconigition or the income from a network ?

     

     

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    1. Aaron

      the thing is, I think they will end up operating at a loss and so on, advertising spend alone to gain traction against the already much more established brands will have to be significant.

      It would be like someone starting a new portal trying to compete with the more established brands, we’ve seen what a lack of national advertising and relying heavily on local agents advertisments have done for that! Not a dig, just a reality.

      Anyway, time will tell who is right or wrong, I for one wouldn’t waste my money.

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  14. NickTurner

    Why don’t we adopt the terminolgy to differentiate between the two main types of agents as :- Mainline Agents or Online (only listing) Agents ?

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  15. basher52

    I think you’ll find the key to the level of take up lies in a look at purplebricks share price.

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