More web competition crucial

One of Australia’s longest-running real estate portals has underlined the need for further competition in the online real estate landscape, which will allow for more affordable pricing and for sites to compete on value and innovation.

Homehound commercial director Peter Turville-Ince said the real estate portal arena has been receiving a lot of attention in recent times, but unfortunately not for the right reasons.

“Homehound’s view is that in order for the online real estate landscape to change, someone needs to step up and challenge what is considered the status quo by providing new and innovative alternatives that create a more efficient and effective marketplace,” he said.

“Equally as important, is that these solutions are affordable.

“Further competition in the online real estate landscape will allow for much more affordable pricing and for portals to compete on value, while innovation will further differentiate providers,” he added.

Mr Turville-Ince said the financial sector is a great example of this as we have seen substantially more non-bank players enter the market.

“[This] has seen prices compress, improved technology and further value being offered to differentiate providers, therefore levelling the playing field between big corporations and smaller, more innovative companies,” he said.

“This ultimately puts pricing back in the consumers' hands as smaller companies fight for their business.”

Mr Turville-Ince also adds that existing providers are focused purely on servicing the marketing side of real estate.

“Our opinion is that it should go further than this. Agents have been poorly supported with tools up until now, relying on multiple systems in addition to legacy paperwork trails,” he said.

“To stand a chance of winning market share, portals have to focus on delivering valuable and transparent solutions to their customers.” 

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