A new internet package aimed at high street agents who also want to give sellers the opportunity of using a separate online service launches today.
Called love2move, the stand-alone service is designed to let high street firms offer a fixed price service under a different brand, at £895.
In the same way that agents can also offer the Fine & Country brand, Love2move is designed to sit alongside the agent’s existing brand.
The idea is that it enables them to compete with online firms without eroding their traditional offering.
It is being promoted as “your high street agent online”.
It was originally designed for MovingWorks, a high street agent covering Preston, Chorley, Burscough and Southport in Lancashire.
MovingWorks launches it today, with a national rollout planned.
Preliminary talks with local estate agents have apparently been positive.
Love2move is aimed at predominately internet-savvy ‘millennials’ looking to save money by taking control of their sale.
The founders say that many young couples are attracted to internet estate agents because of their low fixed prices. The package enables local agents to offer a fixed price online service under a different brand.
It combines the functions of Rightmove and Tinder, adopting the Tinder methodology of swipe and select so buyers can view potential houses easily and quickly by opening the love2move website on a phone or tablet, browsing properties and swiping the ones that match their requirements.
They can then communicate directly with the seller through an online chat function. Sellers have the opportunity to pay an additional fee to access other services, such as sales progression or help with negotiations.
The idea for Love2move came from Mark Worrall, sales manager of MovingWorks, and his wife Rachael, pictured below.
The couple, both 30, moved house last year. They say this prompted them to realise that other sellers in their age group would be attracted to online agents, losing out on the valuable local knowledge that helps both sellers and buyers.
Mark was also aware that online agents often fail to offer any back-up service.
This sparked the idea of launching a fixed-price online service, delivered locally.
The concept of love2move was developed by Mark and Rachael with Mark’s mother Georgina Cox, founder and managing director of MovingWorks.
In the process, the trio realised that the model would also work for other high street agents, giving love2move national branding – again, similar to Fine & Country.
Like MovingWorks, all agents taking up the love2move brand must be members of NAEA Propertymark. Only one agent per region will be eligible to join.
NAEA Propertymark managing director Mark Hayward said: “The way consumers interact and engage with different services is constantly evolving, and property professionals need to adapt and evolve to meet these demands; a large part of that is embracing technology.
“Any model that can enhance our agents’ offering is a good thing.”
Georgina Cox said: “MovingWorks has always recognised that nothing can beat the local expertise, professionalism and knowledge of the traditional estate agent. However, the marketplace is changing and customers want more choice.
“Mark and Rachael represent the next generation of sellers, internet-savvy, cost-conscious individuals used to working in real time.
“Love2move combines a cost saving option with the peace of mind of local expertise, whilst preserving the domain of traditional agents.”