By in Breaking News

New House Selling Website OnTheMarket.com Review

A new house selling website, onthemarket.com, was launched today, 25 January 2015. So I've had a look at it to see what the differences are and to compare Rightmove and Zoopla with Onthemarket.com

In the UK there are two main house selling websites covering nearly 100% of all houses for sale. These are Rightmove and Zoopla. Rightmove gets 70 million site visitors/month and Zoopla gets 40 million hits/month. So, do we need a third property portal? Certainly, when I was looking to buy a house I found that the houses on Zoopla in my area were on Rightmove - so I mostly used Rightmove.

The new house selling website forces the estate agents to put properties onto the OnTheMarket website first, a full 2 days before they can then add the house to just ONE of the other two websites. This means that an agent has to choose whether to use OnTheMarket.com - and then whether to advertise properties on Rightmove, or on Zoopla - as they cannot be on all three at the same time.

This morning, as a potential house buyer, I've looked at OnTheMarket.com to see how it compares. What I found was:

  • As the page loads, the clickable areas move about - causing me to often click on a link that then moved and resulted in me clicking on something else.
  • The default sort order is "by Highest price first" - I changed this to "Lowest first" and then as I changed each of the other options, such as price, or number of bedrooms, I had to keep selecting it to sort into "Lowest first" order each time - which was annoying
  • Having loaded the first area, when I tried to change the town name by overtyping it, although it worked the first time, typing in a new town after that it was just giving me one character, so I had to start again.
  • There are a lot of agents who are using Onthemarket already - some big names. I've not cross-checked which portals they were using before though, so can't tell if there's an introductory offer or if they've had to remove properties from one of the other two house selling websites.

Onthemarket offers you the results to be displayed in list order, as a picture grid, or on a map. It also shows you past selling prices. Both of the competitor sites also do these things.

In short - the new website doesn't do anything that Rightmove and Zoopla do, so we'll have to see if it has a market impact, or if it leaves sellers short-changed as they now need to put extra thought into deciding who will sell their house based on which websites they use!

I'll be keeping an eye on the new website, to see if it turns out to be a help or a hindrance.

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Comments

Koalemos wrote on January 26, 2015, 6:53 AM

It would never cross my mind to look online for a home, although I suppose that many people already do.

UK_Writer wrote on January 26, 2015, 7:06 AM

it's pretty much the norm in the UK. It's there, 24/7, with filters and fully searchable. Unless you know specifically where you want to live, you can't get round to all the agents and make sure they're keeping you informed of all properties - and, also, agents outside of the area might be selling the perfect house round the corner!

Koalemos wrote on January 26, 2015, 7:14 AM

I cannot disagree with you, but I live in England and have never personally known of anyone house hunting online.

Maplewinter wrote on January 26, 2015, 7:17 AM

From what you have said it seems that this website has a lot of bugs that need fixing. They sound like simple bugs that should have been ironed out before going live but unfortunately for them they haven't been. This could mean that a lot of potential customers will be lost. Hopefully it won't be too many though.

UK_Writer wrote on January 26, 2015, 7:22 AM

Yes, certainly I think Sort Order should remain fixed until you change it - and shouldn't default to the site default on each refresh! That alone could get tiresome. I don't think it's going to be good for sellers as they now need to think more proactively about which websites agents are advertising their house for sale on. Sellers won't have the necessary market information to really make an informed choice.

Janey1966 wrote on January 26, 2015, 7:25 AM

Thanks for that review. Because we have this house up for sale it's useful to know there is another website that's come on stream, so to speak. By the way, there is another one..called primelocation.com. emoticon :smile:

UK_Writer wrote on January 26, 2015, 7:57 AM

Ah yeah, Primelocation - it's out there, but a limited market. Most people don't use it, I think it's more of a "posher houses/agents" type of thing. So memorable even I forgot about them :)

maxeen wrote on January 26, 2015, 8:16 AM

It is more complicated now than ever,too many choices that are confusing.

UK_Writer wrote on January 26, 2015, 10:02 AM

Yes, decisions to make and choices for sellers - but this new website doesn't make it easier for them at all as it's something they will have no idea they have to think about until they have put it on the market and other people say "Oh, you should have used .... instead"

MsBiz wrote on January 26, 2015, 11:59 AM

We have some similar sites in the US, and they were helpful for me when I was house shopping. Hopefully they'll will get this one up to par soon. Online house shopping really is the way to go these days.

UK_Writer wrote on January 26, 2015, 12:19 PM

I've found it invaluable. I bought this house after seeing it online. I don't register with agents as they're dismissive and arrogant enough - when I try to register they tend to "sneer" at me, or take a disinterested attitude, possibly as I am a single female. One even said to my face once, "How do you expect to pay for it?" then "You know lenders don't like lending to single women..."
Relying on them to let me know of suitable properties is just not on the radar these days

UK_Writer wrote on January 26, 2015, 12:22 PM

It's certainly instant and 24/7. In the UK I think we were ahead of the US in that we had a website that had 90% of all houses for sale in the UK about 8-10 years ago, enabling us to search, filter by price and number of bedrooms, to then view them as a list or on a map. It was a game changer as suddenly you could look at houses all over the place!

Magnolia wrote on January 26, 2015, 12:35 PM

I have not bought a house in a couple of decades. I am glad I do not have to..it seems so complicated,

UK_Writer wrote on January 26, 2015, 12:56 PM

It's not especially complicated, but you do wonder if it'll ever happen!

maxeen wrote on January 26, 2015, 1:43 PM

I thought those days had well gone..

maxeen wrote on January 26, 2015, 1:45 PM

Primelocation is too upmarket for everyday folk.

suzzy3 wrote on January 26, 2015, 2:58 PM

On line is much better you can see all the photo's of the rooms at your leisure. I still prefer to go to an office.

UK_Writer wrote on January 26, 2015, 3:41 PM

Offices aren't open enough hours really - and are in town centres, so parking can be an issue. Where I used to live a lot were only open Saturday mornings. Saturday mornings, for full-time workers, are difficult as that's a slim slot to have your hair done, get the car fixed/MoT'd, pick up a random parcel from the Post Office as you got a "sorry you were out card" - all those services are also only open Saturday mornings for most. Leaving agents uncontactable.

Coffee wrote on February 24, 2015, 9:22 AM

I saw this new site too and was amazed that they would let sellers only go with one of the other 2 main competitors.

UK_Writer wrote on February 28, 2015, 5:18 PM

I keep forgetting it exists until I see the telly adverts, but then I am not buying a house, but I do like to know what's for sale.