BREAKING NEWS – top 5 stories 17/02/2021
NAEA PROPERTYMARK NEW CEO TIM BALCON DEPARTS
Following the shock resignation of the NAEA Propertymark president Kirsty Finney days ago the newly installed CEO Tim Balcon has fallen on his sword and left the Propertymark building.
I personally have had over 40 agents contact me asking what is really going on, and if anyone has an answer please contact me. Also if anyone has any ideas of what inniatives they have in store?
What I can print is the recent communication sent out to all NEAE Propertymark agents who pay regular subscriptions to be looked after in a professional manner by their guiding light.
As a valued member of Propertymark, I want to let you know that Tim Balcon has decided to resign from his position as CEO. He believes it is in the best interests of both the organisation and himself that he steps down at this point in Propertymark’s development.
The Board want to take this opportunity to thank Tim for his time at Propertymark and wish him well for the future.
Tim Balcon: ‘I have no doubt Propertymark has a very bright future ahead of it. I wish to convey to all Propertymark members my gratitude and respect for the way in which they have embraced my leadership. Equally I wish the Board and in particular the exceptional staff at Propertymark my best wishes for the future.’ To provide stability for our members through the coming period the Board has asked me to continue in the role of Interim Executive Chair.
The Board remain completely focused on driving our new strategy forward and providing the highest level of support to our members. Over the last 12 months and throughout the pandemic period, Propertymark has worked closely with members, providing relevant guidance and lobbying on your behalf. We will continue delivering on our priority: supporting members across all professional disciplines.
In recent months, we have embarked on a number of key, Board-led initiatives including a review of membership services and this important work will continue. We look forward to moving forward with this agenda, which is designed to improve member benefits and access to member services.
In the meantime, please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or concerns. We would be very happy to hear from you.
NICKY HEATCOTE Interim Executive Chair, Propertymark
WHO WILL BE THE NEW CEO OF NAEA PROPERTYMARK
Given that Tim Balcon was installed in about 6-weeks, and had zero knowledge of the UK real estate industry, and the job of head hunting was outsourced, will the same company be used again to find his successor.
Also who might be in the hit list? The ex-CEO of Countrywide, probably not, though he does have some estate agency credentials. Gary Barker – Ex-CEO Reapit – he actually would be a brilliant candidate as he has an understanding of the industry and tech, so not an obvious choice.
My suggestion would be someone who can talk to the city and the grass roots membership and wants to run a less opaque operation, that is where growth will come.
RIGHTMOVE UNDER FOCUS WITH REGARD TO THEIR CHARGING MODEL
A recent survey of only 100 agents has concluded that there is a huge variance between what the top paying agent and bottom paying agent are being charged by the number one portal. Silas Lees founder of WiggyWam, states that some agents pay as little as £150 a month, whilst others pay as much as £5,000 for a single branch.
It has long been known that certain corporates have had a very low enterprise model fee model from Rightmove, which may or may not stem from the fact that there were in the beginning a number of estate agents who first helped fund Rightmove.
It will of course add more petrol to the raging fire of discontent that many agents have, if they realise that in the same town their competitors are indeed paying a lot less as an overhead than they are, maybe time to quiz those helpful sales representatives from Rightmove?
LEADERS ROMANS LOSSES MOUNT FURTHER
For many years, the accounts of Romans and now Romans Leaders has been in a precarious state, and the cumulative mountain of debt is North of 260M, with additional debt provision seeing an uptick in the last year.
The company’s strategy has been both acquisition and using large sums of capital to support their debt position, but like Countrywide PLC there comes a point at which the bank, in this case private equity, may step in to address the situation.
UNIVERSITY STUDENTS LOOK TO SAFEGUARD HOUSING COSTS
Many students have not had the benefit of the accommodation they paid for due to the pandemic and moving forward may ask for ‘break clauses’ in their tenancy agreements.
If you have a view – please let us all know by emailing me at [email protected] – Andrew Stanton Executive Editor – moving property and proptech forward.