The ACT Portal Market

3 minute read

The ACT Portal market is a little different to others across Australia in that neither Domain nor hold the number 1 portal spot. This claim is owned by an independent ACT based company. What Allhomes have managed to do is cement the Allhomes brand into the minds of real estate agents and property seekers across the ACT. So much so, that some residents of Canberra do not recognise the or Domain brands.

Overcoming Australia’s largest real estate portals is quite an achievement and can be explained by two main factors:

Intensive Advertising – Since inception, Allhomes have heavily advertised through TV embedding their brand in the minds of ACT residents. The advertising campaign was based around a jingle and comedian Vince Chialo and was the same concept for a long period of time. Allhomes also advertise on billboards, buses and other mediums in the ACT.

Niche Market – Although Allhomes cater for properties in the ACT and surrounding NSW, their primary market is the ACT. The ACT is only a small geographic area which basically consists of Canberra, meaning it is relatively easy to reach the entire audience. Unlike for a national or state based portal, Allhomes entire audience reads the same paper, watches the same tv channels, catches the same buses and goes to the same locations. This has resulted in Allhomes achieving excellent exposure through cost effective advertising.

Allhomes’s position is that far ahead of REA and Domain that it’s been reported that both were looking into purchasing Allhomes last year, with one party close to a deal falling over in the eleventh hour.

The success of Allhomes is an Australia portal fairytale in how to launch and succeed with a nice real estate portal. However, like other leading portals, Allhomes continued to squeeze their clients increasing fees steadily over the years (they charge per listing rather than per office). They also have some strict terms in their contracts which agents must abide to including display the Allhomes logo on print advertising, sign boards, window displays and display all listings on Allhomes at a per listing price of  around $495.

These terms and gradual increase in prices led to the formation of a cooperative of ACT agents who launched their own real estate portal in 2010.

The goal of GetRealty is not to make a profit but rather provide ACT agents with an alternative to Allhomes. They’re not about taking the number 1 spot away from Allhomes, rather to reduce Allhomes monopolistic position and force them to act more competitive.

GetRealty hasn’t achieved this yet but is certainly on the way as they have a large number of ACT franchise groups and independents joining the cooperative and supporting the portal. Membership to the cooperative is open to any licensed real estate offices located in the ACT and being a cooperative means all offices are provided with equal rights in the portal.

Around the same time GetRealty was launched, another ACT based portal entered the market as well. They too are providing ACT agents with further free alternatives to Allhomes.

Tell us if you liked this content.
Show CommentsClose Comments


  • Vic
    Posted November 1, 2011 at 5:59 pm 0Likes

    All homes have had a massive television campaign going in Tasmania for past 6 months (at least). Every agent has been approached independently and most have taken up their initial offer of free to list.
    The TV campaign stars comedian Vince Sorrenti “how do ya know- How do ya know what your neighbours proerty sold for – ya go to”. Brilliant.

  • Sam
    Posted November 1, 2011 at 8:02 pm 0Likes

    Congratulations Allhomes!

    Great to hear that a smaller operator has taken a chunk out of the big players.

  • Tim Bonnefin
    Posted November 2, 2011 at 10:08 am 0Likes

    All homes have recently launched in Tasmania. They were running a very intense marketing campain, tv, busses etc. but have backed off a little now. The web site is free to join at the moment but has not yet gained a lot of traction based mainly on the fact there are several agent larger agencies boycoting the web site due to there pricing tactics in the ACT.

  • Vic
    Posted November 2, 2011 at 2:21 pm 0Likes


    As I mentioned above the campaign has been going for at least 6 months and has 7425 tasmanian property listings. Not bad for a little state with only 0.5m population. Yes I have heard the complaints re tactics to later charge on pay per list. However, Tasmanian agents are a pretty astute mob. If, or when All homes introduces pay per list and the agents vendor are not prepared to pay, watch all the listings disappear.

    The interesting aspect of allhomes in Tassie is that they have no real presence in google search engine for “property for sale tasmania nor for realestate for sale tasmania” They don’t even rank on page 1 let alone no 1.. All of their presence is through paid google ad/SEM and not SEO. The moment they stop paying for ads they could be introuble.

    Our humble portal ranks page 1 no.1 for the above key phrases.

  • forsaleforlease
    Posted November 2, 2011 at 4:16 pm 0Likes

    Another reason I believe All homes have been able to dominate the ACT market is the licensing requirements. You need to be licensed in the ACT to sell there if you offer the full service not just a NSW license. The target list of agents could easily be identified and would have been a manageable number to actively market to.
    I wonder if national licensing was in play 5 years ago if they would have been as successful.
    Well done to them for identifying the opportunity and capitalising on it.

  • Ryan O'Grady
    Posted November 2, 2011 at 4:47 pm 0Likes

    I heard Allhomes fell out with Tasmanian agents because in an effort to build stock they were scraping agent’s data without their permission. As is often the case with scraping, the data appeared incorrect on Allhomes and agents were furious……….not to mention Allhomes did not have their permission.

  • Vic
    Posted November 2, 2011 at 5:08 pm 0Likes

    I believe what you say was correct with All homes entry to Tassie. I got the same feedback at the time. Still, they have a big chunk of Tassie properties for sale on their portal.
    A flaws in their Tassie strategy is

    1.their inability to advertise in the State’s three papers all of which are owned by either fairfax or News Ltd.

    2.The bus adverts aren’t as effective here as the population is not as concentrated as Canberra. Similar population but spread out across a whole State.

  • Ryan O'Grady
    Posted November 4, 2011 at 8:35 am 0Likes

    Yep, Tassie is a lot larger than the ACT so more costs to reach the audience. Although they have a large chunk of properties it is going to be hard to convince agents to start paying, given most Tassie agents are already paying REA and Domain.

    In the ACT they were a first mover, its a lot different in Tassie. Perhaps they would have been better to target Darwin.

  • Ryan Ferris
    Posted November 19, 2011 at 1:02 pm 0Likes

    Pretty partisan piece there Mr O’Grady. Curious that you didn’t note your company AgentPoint’s involvement with GetRealty.

    At the end of the day, GetRealty is a cheap knock-off of Allhomes — given that you know that company pretty well, do they really expect to disrupt market share in the ACT by pushing out a cheap facsimile of the market leader?

    btw is it Allhomes, allhomes, All homes or All Homes ???

    Ryan Ferris

  • Ryan O'Grady
    Posted November 20, 2011 at 7:04 am 0Likes

    I believe the idea was to provide users with a similar experience to Allhomes and yes we manage their imports.

Leave a comment