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Complaint against ‘Marie Celeste’ listings platform upheld by advertising watchdog

Houser.co.uk has not responded to ASA for a second time after complaints over significantly out-of-date property featured in its search results.

Nigel Lewis

houser

Online property listings service houser.co.uk has once again been admonished by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) over one of the homes advertised on the site.

The watchdog has upheld a complaint by a member of the public that a five-bedroom detached property in Essex featured on the site (pictured, above) for sale at £1.05 million was a listing from 2016.

The complainant claimed the advert including its description, photographs and price were misleading. The ASA has upheld their complaint and required houser not to repeat the advert in its current form.

“We told houser.co.uk to ensure that information they published about property, for example its availability, price, photographs and other information, were accurate in future,” the ASA says.

No response

The property is still live on the site and the ASA’s efforts to improve the company’s advertising standards are likely to fall on deaf ears.

Houser is not run by a registered legal entity and although its website includes details of an address in Romford, Essex, the ASA was not able to get through to anyone running the listings service.

Its web hosting service provider, Fasthosts Internet Ltd, has agreed to pass on the ASA’s correspondence to the firm, but with no luck so far.

Houser featured in another ruling by the ASA in 2017 when agent Newton Fallowell complained about one of its properties which remained on the site many months after being sold.

On that occasion the company, which launched in 2015 offering agents free, unlimited property listings, also failed to engage or correspond with the ASA.

July 3, 2019

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