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A major estate agency partner has pulled out of Tesco's newly launched property website, concerned that Tesco's practice of listing private seller's homes for £199 conflicts with its own business.  

Tesco Property Market

The Times is reporting that fish4homes has pulled out of its contract with tescopropertymarket.com. The move will initially damage Tesco's plans, as it would have expected to see many thousands of referrals from the fish4homes portal.

Other online property portals have already refused to co-operate with Tesco, as they mainly rely on estate agents for their business, and Tesco's DIY model excludes them altogether.

Joe Slavin, CEO of fish4homes, said he was not aware that Tesco would be displaying DIY listings alongside their own:

"We thought it was going to be just another portal link. It was not clear [when we signed up] that they were going to have their own home sellers. It was supposed to be a classic white label partnership. Our agents win by getting traffic, they win by knowing who is in the market."

All of the properties listed on Tesco's property site at the moment are supplied by fish4homes, so the withdrawal of the listings may have quite an impact to begin with.

However, in the longer term, who would bet against Tesco? Has fish4homes done the right thing by drawing a line and marking out Tesco as a competitor? Or, is this a dangerous / righteous ploy that may see Tesco redoubling its efforts to establish a real foothold in this nascent marketspace?

Graham Charlton

Published 4 July, 2007 by Graham Charlton

Graham Charlton is the former Editor-in-Chief at Econsultancy. Follow him on Twitter or connect via Linkedin or Google+

2565 more posts from this author

Comments (10)

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David Fiske

I'm not sure whether Fish4 has done the right thing. Perhaps they have.

Let's face it, the majority of people use Rightmove and Fish4 (or variants thereof) so I'm doubtful as to how successful Tesco can be with this.

Surely it won't be long before Tesco take on Google!

Mind you, with a name like tescopropertymarket.com, their search engine would be along the lines of tescosearchengine.com. Catchy.

Only time will tell and given the power of Tesco, I could see them doing well. Their best bet I would imagine is doing deals with Fish4 and Rightmove and aggregating the results, taking some commission for every enquiry.

This is, however, only my opinion.

over 9 years ago


Ann Hartland

Tesco have highlighted the fact that people can sell their property themselves
without the need to pay extortionate fee's to estate agents, there are many better online web sites advertising property for sale than Tesco.

It's only a matter of time before most people will start to sell their homes online, just like they do when they book an holiday, how many travel agents are there now in the high street!

over 9 years ago



What a fantastic idea from tesco!!

As an estate agent myself, id be tempted to try it, if I was to sell my home, just because it is cheap! But I live in my home with my husband, im 29 and so doing viewings wouldnt be a problem, I also have a first hand knowlage of the conveyancing process, to get me through the sale, and I know the things to ask purchasers about there financial position to try and ensure that the house sale does fall through due to lack of funds on their behalf. In other words I know what im doing, ive been trained and I know how stressful it is, if you turn us estate agents into a website who are the general public going to shout at when something goes wrong and its knowone elses fault but thier own?

There is a market for it and I am sure they will have success but they are just the same as the other numerous web based estate agents we have in this country, and they havent wiped out the good old fashioned estate agent, we are still on the high street. Tescos wont harm the good..dare I say 'honest' estate agents, it just might get rid of the dodgy ones!

I believe the saying is...'you pay peanuts you get monkeys'.

Good Luck Tesco's.

over 9 years ago



We have used www.sellthatproperty.co.uk and sold our house within 2 weeks for just £69.99. So think Tesco's will no doubt corner this market at well?

about 9 years ago



See TESCO's have now stopped their Private Property web site as they where demed to be an estate agent ? or was it that they did not have enough properties available to listed once Fish4Homes had stopped sending them their properties, I read that they are considering becoming an estate agent so that they can list on the major property portals, but will Rightmove allow them to list ? I know they did not allow www.sellthatproperty to list as they considered them to be a Private for sale company.

about 9 years ago


G Lambert

I have been involved with an operation of a similar nature.
It will take someone with very deep pockets, to ultimately create what I believe the UK property market needs so badly :
Namely : A national, organic portal, which allows vendors to totally bypass the existing estate agency network ( with it's inherent horrendous fees!).
The successful creation of a site of this nature – would totally transform the UK property market(and could be replicated worldwide).
The reveue potential of such an operation, could ultimately be highly significant, and be generated from many sources.
However, the costs incurred in promoting such a site to "critical mass" will be horrendous.
Unfortunately, all the current major Internet property players, are owned, funded by, or linked to, the current estate agency system. Tesco's are unlikely to receive support from any of them – and would potentially have to purchase one or more existing players -- in order to offer an initial credible base of properties for sale.
I hope Tesco's can make it work, it will be interesting to see what develops........
Personally, I think the basic concept is great – it would be huge fun making it work.

about 9 years ago


West Hampstead Estate Agents

All competition is good competition and as Anna says 'you pay peanuts you get monkeys'.

There will be those that take advantage of a Tesco type scenario but there will still be a market for proper old fashioned estate agency services.

almost 9 years ago


Property marketer

I'm just in the process of selling my Mum's house in Spain online and have gone for the simple route - free website template, free webhosting and a tenner spent on a domain name. I'll be doing the search engine marketing for this and it will get sold really quickly. No need for estate agents or third parties.

almost 9 years ago


kim jamilly

I was an estate agent for many years and their value is undisputed. Who will show your property whilst your at work or out of the country and will advise the purchaser of the the benifits of your particular area? Who will spend days driving potential buyers around at their expense, sometimes to no avail.

However Everything in life changes, sometimes for the better.

I have just spent three years developing a website for people wanting to buy or rent property abroad called medhead.com and we welcome private advertisers and estate agents. The site automatically translates the advertisment into seven different languages, so more bang for your buck there.

Let's welcome the age of technology.

Kim Jamilly
Managing Director.

almost 9 years ago


Emma Haller

I must say that I agree with fish4, the value for an estate agent is exclusivity and not having to share the site with private owners.

Estate agents are needed, they have professional training and know how to match clients perfectly to their properties.
It is true that they get bad press but at the end of the day a sale is a sale and they can sell.

no matter how many websites are created for people they can still only create leads and not actually sell the property. We like social interaction, it is what makes us what we are, people like to go and talk about what they want, where they want it and at what price they are willing to pay.

Se Vende Casa - www.sevendecasa.eu, a property portal in Spain is taking advantage of the use of the mobile phone in creating leads for estate agents.
Receiving immediate property information by SMS while standing outside a property.

over 8 years ago

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