LONDON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--London-based property consultancy Strawberry Star has today launched to market globally, with a unique service offer yet unseen on the international property market. In response to an alarming 76% of UK consumers who have had a negative experience with an estate agent, Strawberry Star’s clients will now be able to choose how much of the commission fee they pay, depending on their experience of the service.
The launch brings an industry first to the consumer property market, testament to the firm’s overriding commitment to service over sale. This contracted promise extends from pre-sale interaction to post sale management of all owner/investor/occupier needs, whether this be performance based or service led.
With over 4 million people in the capital alone contributing the highest levels of national discontent, the launch of today’s report underpins the rationale behind Strawberry Star’s market defining offer. Championed by Dorian Beresford - CEO - Strawberry Star has placed an overriding level of attention on the relationship value behind the sale or purchase of a property, as opposed to purely the transactional value it holds.
In support of this, the Estate Agent Evaluations2 report reveals just over 7.5 million people across the UK feel the number one frustration towards estate agents is the agent’s overriding interest in receiving commission over finding the right property for their client, with one in five respondents in London stating so (18%).
Moreover, the current state of the property market sees customers bound by lengthy contracts that only account for the performance element of a transaction. These contracts must be adhered to if the agent achieves a sale or let, regardless of whether the client’s requirements are truly fulfilled, or if the calibre of customer service was acceptable or not.
Strawberry Star CEO, Dorian Beresford, said: “Consumers both at home and overseas continue to be dramatically underserved by their agents. The level of unsatisfied customers here in the UK is astonishing and representative of the frankly abysmal service delivered by many in the industry. We feel it is our obligation to redress the balance and put the power back into the hands of the public by literally putting our money where our mouth is. No tie-in periods, no false promises and if the client is not delighted by our service they get to choose how much of our fee to pay.”
With all global operations driven from a Central London head office and a further 25 UK offices in the pipeline, the firm has commissioned nationally representative research to ensure an in-depth understanding of the consumers they stand to serve.
Key findings unearthed in Estate Agent Evaluations include (using nationally representative population figures):
- Over 4.4 million consumers felt an estate agent had broken promises
- More people in London have had a bad experience with an estate agent than any other part of the UK – with 88% stating so
- Nearly one in 10 (9%) of the UK felt there was a lack of transparency from an estate agent – equating to over 4.4 million people
- There is a generational difference in the quality of service, with 8% of 25-34 year olds feeling pressured into purchasing a house by an estate agent – twice the national average
- 15% of the London population felt an estate agent broke their promises. More than any other region in the UK
- In a regional comparison, the research found that Strawberry Star’s leading launch market, London, was the least satisfied with an estate agent, with a remarkable 88% admitting to a bad experience when looking for a property – over 4 million people
In response to the report findings, Beresford continued:
“We put people over property and ensure every single one of our clients - whether owners, occupiers or investors from the UK and abroad - feel that they are receiving a personalised service and are dealing with people that genuinely care about what matters to them. This commitment stands throughout every stage of the buying, moving, selling and letting process. ”
About the Research
1. The Property Ombudsman Annual Report 2013: http://bit.ly/1aWRNq0
2. The omnibus sample size for the research was 2,003 UK adults. The sample is nationally representative of the UK adult population as the data is weighted to known UK nationally representative profiles for gender, age, region, working status and social grade. This ensures that the sample is an accurate reflection of the UK population.