A major listing portal is encouraging more competition in the marketplace, according to the site's general manager.
Speaking with Real Estate Business, Tony Blamey, general manager of real estate at Fairfax Marketplaces (owner of Domain.com), said healthy competition would stop any company dominating the listing arena.
“Competition in any market is healthy and ultimately benefits both industry players as well as consumers by encouraging product innovation, service improvement and achievement,” he said.
“We know agents want a competitive portal market as this is the best way to avoid one player having too much power to lift prices unreasonably.”
However, Mr Blamey wasn’t confident that an industry-owned portal would have the means to deliver a site that could rival the likes of realestate.com.au or domain.com.au.
“That being said, what may be different with regards to industry-owned property listing portals is the issue of resourcing. Will they have adequate resources for continuous technology innovation and development?” he pointed out.
Mr Blamey's comments follow the industry's call for an industry-owned portal site, after REA Group announced a new Flexi Subscription fee that ultimately leaves agents worse off.
According to Mr Blamey, until last year, Domain had not raised their fees for four years.
“Like any company, we need to effectively balance covering the costs of running a portal business, investing in digital technology development to continuously improve the customer experience, and servicing our customers,” he said.
“Any price changes we make are highly considered. We’ve recently adjusted our rates on selected products, which will affect only new or renewing contracts from May this year.”
To see the full interview with Mr Blamey CLICK HERE.