High Street or Budget Agent – who’s really selling property?

There has been much said and a considerable amount of mud thrown in an ongoing and rather unedifying pitched battle between traditional high street estate agents and the new breed of low cost budget agents, that has raged for a few years now, with both vying for the hearts and minds of house sellers.

A lot of the advertising claims made, especially by certain of the low cost budget agents are often unsubstantiated and have landed them in hot water with the Advertising Standards Agency on more than one occasion, so statistics published yesterday by the independent data collection company TwentyCi made for some very interesting reading.

The comparative sales figures between High Street and Online Agents

The figures were for Quarter 3 of 2018 and showed the comparative number of house sale exchanges there were during the period between the much maligned traditional high street estate agents and the much heralded low cost budget agents who have been vociferously proclaiming the new world order in the industry.

The number of house sales exchanging contracts through high street estate agents were up 0.5% from the previous quarter. Now this might not seem like anything to be shouting from the roof tops about, however the number being sold through low cost budget agents has dropped a fairly significant 6.1% during the same period.

Challenging market conditions mean more than a portal listing is needed to sell your home

What this clearly demonstrates is that as the market is becoming more challenging, with the time of year, Brexit looming ever nearer and the increasing uncertainty as to what sort of deal we will be leaving with! talk of a correction still being needed in house values and a lack of affordable housing for first time buyers – agents need a lot more than just a portal listing to get sales through – local knowledge, experience of difficult market conditions, an established database of buyers who agents are talking too on a daily basis to understand their requirements fully and match them as closely as possible to the most suitable properties, are all increasingly important and clearly the low cost, do it yourself budget agents are starting to flounder and rather than just producing clever marketing to hoodwink potential sellers, there are now tangible and measurable results that show, who is actually selling property in the current climate.

Thanks for reading, see you next time!


Whether you are selling, buying, letting or renting, we’re here to help. Call Patrick, Sarah, Joe or myself on 0161 428 3663 or email: for expert advice which is honest, accurate and informative. Better still, why not pop into our High Street office for an informal chat, you never know, we might even stretch to one of our famous brews!

The Property Ombudsman Chartered Trading Standards Institute