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Strike (Formerly Housesimple) Will Sell Your House For Free – What’s The Catch?
If you’ve just discovered that Strike.co.uk (formerly Housesimple.com) have taken an axe to their fees, making their house-selling service COMPLETELY FREE – yes, the same service they used to flog for a whopping £995 – then your first reaction is probably the same as everyone else’s: jump onto Google to find out what the hell is going on!
So here we are!
Meanwhile, Strike’s rivals, Purplebricks & Yopa, don’t seem phased, because they’re still flogging their very similar Hybrid estate agency service north of £950.
Reluctant to believe that an estate agent could give away something for free – let alone the same service that used to cost a small fortune – the obvious question is being asked. Is this weird looking “thing” legit?
On the surface, the offer doesn’t make sense. In fact, it feels straight-up batshit crazy. So if you don’t know what the deal is, allow me to explain what’s going on…
FYI, Housesimple have gone through a complete re-brand, they are now Strike.co.uk. For all intents and purposes, they’re the same company offering the same services they always have, but they’ve thrown themselves under the surgical knife and made some superficial amendments.
Going forward, Housesimple is no more. It’s Strike! STRIKE!
Table of contents:
Is Strike’s house-selling service actually free?
In short, yes! Totally free.
When I mentioned Strike’s free services (note, they were Housesimple at the time) on my Facebook Page (consider joining if you haven’t done so already), a couple of people confirmed that it’s the real deal:
So yup, you can legitimately sign-up to Strike’s service and sell your house without spending a dime.
Here’s an overview of what you get for free:
|Estate Agent||Rating||Duration||Includes / Notes||Price|
Strike (formerly Housesimple)||RatingTrustPilot Reviews||
Includes / Notes|
No fee package
|Visit WebsiteBook Free In-Person Valuation|
Yup, everything listed is included with the free package.
So, is there a catch or what?
There isn’t a catch per’se with Strike’s FREE service, but there is a hefty limitation, which may make this a non-starter for the majority of homeowners (looking to sell) in the UK.
Catch 1: England only!
First and foremost, Strike currently only sell properties in England. So if your property is located in any other country in the UK, I’m sorry, but you’re out of luck, there are no freebies or party bags for you here, only a link to alternative online estate agents available to you at a cost (small cost, mind you).
Catch 2: Strike will either provide you with a “Hybrid” service or a “Virtual” service (but not really a catch)
Strike used to limit their services to specific regions in the North of England, but they now service the whole of England (even though Strike don’t want you to know that, apparently. More on that shortly). However, depending on where your property is located in the country, you will either receive a ‘Hybrid’ service or a ‘Virtual’ (online only) service.
Strike’s “Hybrid” service
The free hybrid service includes the following:
- 6 months marketing on Rightmove, Zoopla + more
- For sale sign
- Sales progression
- In-person valuation
Yes, it’s all FREE, and as said, it’s comparable to what Purplebricks & Yopa currently offer for an eye-watering £999.
However, Strike’s Hybrid service is currently only available to a select few regions in the north of England, which currently includes the following regions:
- North West
The specific postcodes their “hybrid” service currently covers is the following: BB, BD, BL, CA, CH1- 4, CH25 – 34, CH41 – 49, CH60 – 66, CH70, CH88, CH99, CW, DG, DH, DL, DN, FY, HD, HG, HU, HX, IM, L, LA, LN, LS, M, NE, NG18 – 24, NG34, OL, PE10 – 12, PE20 – 25, PR, S, SK, SR, ST7 – 8, SY13 – 14, TD, TS, WA, WF, WN, YO.
Strike’s “Virtual” (online only) service
To be honest, I don’t even know if I should be telling you about their free virtual service, because when I pressed Strike’s marketing team for details on the service (so I could promote it), this is the response I received:
Strike is currently trialling the offering to customers outside of it’s core operating region. On that basis Strike would like to avoid promoting this service where possible as the information and proposition promoted may quickly become inaccurate as the trial progresses.
*scratches noggin* I’m so confused! Why did they tell me about their new virtual service in the first place then if not to promote it? Here I am nonetheless, with my gigantic and toxic blabbermouth, promoting the crap out if it.
The deal is: if you don’t qualify for the hybrid service, you’re not left out in the cold completely, because you’ll still qualify for their free “virtual” (online only) service, which is available to the rest of England.
The virtual service includes everything the hybrid service does minus the “in-person valuation”, instead you’ll get a digital valuation report (which is presumably compiled by current and historical house price data).
So, to clarify, the virtual service includes*:
- 6 months marketing on Rightmove, Zoopla + more
- For sale sign
- Sales progression
In-person valuationDigital valuation report
*please note, this might change over time.
Once again, yes, it’s all for free.
In-person valuation or digital valuation report, either way it’s a mind-boggling offer. No one else is offering anything remotely close to Strike’s Hybrid or Virtual house selling services.
If you’re specifically looking for a package which includes a local agent to conduct an in-person valuation (and you don’t qualify for the Hybrid package), then you might want to look elsewhere for an alternative online estate agent. For me, it wouldn’t be a deal-breaker, because it’s easy enough to get an accurate house valuation from external sources, while still taking advantage of Strike’s freebie.
If you want someone to host your viewings, then don’t fret, because Strike offer hosted viewings for an optional extra (£300) for both their Hybrid and Virtual service.
How to sell your property with Strike
Step 1: Get a valuation
Strike’s free service includes a valuation, and arranging one should be step 1.
Depending on your postcode, you’ll either qualify for the free Hybrid or free Virtual service. If you qualify for their Hybrid service, you’ll be able to schedule an agent to conduct an in-person valuation through their online calendar. Everyone else will be provided with an online valuation/report.
To clarify, there is 100% no obligations to use their service after a valuation is conducted.
As said, Strike isn’t exactly shouting from the rooftops that they will provide a service to the entire country, so if you enter a postcode which slips outside of the regions they’re openly targeting (which are the northern Hybrid regions), they should still offer you with an online-only service.
If at any point they shutdown the virtual service, no harm, no foul. It’s worth a try either way, in my opinion.
Step 2: Instruct Strike to sell your home
If you are happy with the valuation, you can then choose to instruct Strike to sell your home. Your property will then be marketed for sale for 6 months on the UK’s biggest property portals, including Rightmove & Zoopla.
Step 3: Going live and managing your advert & enquiries
Once your advert is live you’ll be able to manage everything via Strike’s online dashboard, including your viewings schedule and any offers made.
Will Strike’s “Hybrid” service eventually be free in my area?
It’s hard to say.
However, Strike have said they do eventually plan on rolling out their hybrid service to other areas eventually, and when they do, I intend to update this blog post. So stay tuned. However, my guess is, they’re going to expand slowly, so I wouldn’t make plans based on the hope that they will service your area in the near future.
You may not have unscratched the winning lotto ticket today, you may tomorrow. Or more realistically, in the coming months. Or years.
But remember, the virtual service that is available [for those that don’t qualify for the hybrid service] isn’t a terrible consolation prize by any means by any stretch, and in fact, many may prefer it. It’s an incredible deal… it’s free, after all.
Why is Strike Free?
If you’re anything like me, then you don’t like things you don’t understand, so that’s why I want to clear any doubts.
While Strike’s offer sounds amazing, WHY IS IT FREE? I NEED TO KNOW!!!
Ok, so here’s the explanation…
Strike toss away their core services for free because they hope to make enough money from up-selling additional services, which includes the following:
- Upgrading Rightmove ads (i.e. if you pay extra for a Rightmove premium listing, which generates more views)
- Energy Performance Certificates (£90)
- Hosted Viewing Services (£549 for unlimited viewings, or *£35 per hosted viewing on a ‘pay as you go’ basis)
- Conveyancing Services (price varies by case)
- Moving services (price varies by case)
- Mortgage brokering service (they won’t charge you for this, but they will earn commission from the lender if they successfully arrange a mortgage for you)
*You might be subject to an additional on-off fee of £78 for key management e.g. key collection/return or ‘key safe’ installation at the premises.
In all fairness to Strike, they are transparent about their up-selling tactics. This is what it says on their website:
We recommend useful services when you need them – such as mortgage, conveyancing and insurance advice. There’s no obligation, but if you use one of our partners we get a commission, which we are upfront about from the start.
Yup, Strike is basically a salesmen scrambling around for commission.
To irritate, there is NO obligation to buy any of their add-on services. However, we can assume that they hope we do – and somewhere along their sales-funnel they’ll probably be a hard-sales approach – but we certainly won’t be contractually obligated to pay a penny for any additional junk. For now, anyways.
Based on their EPC price (£90), I think it’s also safe to assume you won’t be getting any real bargains by tossing their extras into your shopping basket, only convenience (maybe). I’ll leave it in your capable hands to decide which you value more, value or convenience.
In any case, good sense should always encourage you to get multiple quotes from different suppliers so you know exactly where you stand. Here are my suggestions:
- Energy Performance Certificates: LettingAProperty.com sell EPC’s for £69 (Inc VAT)
- Mortgages Quotes: Habito is a free online mortgage brokerage, and they have been amassing a huge amount of positive feedback for providing extremely competitive mortgage deals. They have a 4.8 / 5 TrustPilot rating from over 2000+ customers (at the time of writing this blog post).
- Conveyancing Quotes: Get 4 instant quotes from expert SRA or CLC regulated conveyancing solicitors and Licensed Conveyancers by using this online tool by Reallymoving.com. Average saving is £365.
- Moving Quotes: Get 5 quotes from reallymoving.com, one of the most popular comparison websites for removal companies.
Yup, I’m sure Strike will be thrilled with that top tip of mine.
Sorry Strike, but your ‘giveaway’ model tells me that you’ll never be able to offer me a good price on your extras. You simply ain’t gots the margins.
As a final note, I want to make it clear that I believe the details covered in this blog post regarding Strike’s service is true at the time of publication. But it may change tomorrow.
I will do my utmost to keep this blog post up-to-date if/when Strike change the terms of their service, but for the most accurate and up-to-date details, you should always rely on Strike’s official website.
Should you use Strike to sell your home? Are they any good?
Just to clarify, I haven’t used Strike’s (or Housesimple’s) estate agency services, so I can’t do anything other than make you aware of their current offering, and explain why and how it’s free (because, as said, it can seem suspicious at a glance). However, it’s worth pointing out that they do have positive reviews on TrustPilot from 7000+ folks, with a current rating of 4.7 (out of 5).
I can’t imagine this business model being sustainable forever, it seems too unprofitable. So, if Strike’s unlikely strategy (to dominate the market) eventually ends up being their downfall, then so be it. That’s on them.
Fortunately, they have backers’ with more money than sense.
But hey, that’s not our concern. If free food is being offered, why not snap it up? Strike.co.uk
Your feedback: have you used Strike’s (or Housesimple’s) free service?
If so, I’d love to hear your experience.
Were they.. errr… worth the money? Leave a comment below…
Remember, if you don’t qualify for Strike’s freebie, check out the list of other online estate agents, which start from £99. No, it’s not free, but still peanuts in the grand scheme of things.
Disclaimer: I'm just a landlord blogger; I'm 100% not qualified to give legal or financial advice. I'm a doofus. Any information I share is my unqualified opinion, and should never be construed as professional legal or financial advice. You should definitely get advice from a qualified professional for any legal or financial matters. For more information, please read my full disclaimer.