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Purplebricks agrees to clarify what ‘pay nothing upfront’ means on its website

Hybrid agency is one of three property industry firms that feature in this week's Advertising Standards Authority case-load.

Nigel Lewis

It has been a busy week for the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) which has had to deal with three property firms referred to it by members of the public, including Purplebricks.

This will be the fifth time this year the hybrid agency has been dealt with by the ASA and the tenth time overall since 2015.

This time the hybrid agency has agreed to add a clickable but tiny ‘information’ symbol (see below) on its ‘What’s included in our fixed fee’ page next to the words ‘A choice to pay nothing upfront’.

A member of the public complained that this could be misleading because, if a vendor chooses to pay later they either have to use Purplebricks’ Advanced Conveyancing Services or, if they don’t, pay an administration fee of £360 including VAT.

After being contacted by the ASA, Purplebricks inserted the pop-up information button containing the words explaining this, and the case was resolved informally.

Two other agents

The other agents featuring in this week’s ASA cases include Property Collection Worldwide and Space4Living.

Cambridge-based the Property Collection Worldwide had been reported for claiming to be the “UK’s leading estate agents’ marketing specialists”, a claim that when challenged it agreed to remove from its website, while Manchester-based Space4Living was challenged over two rental property ads.

The pictures of the properties involved appeared to be smaller than the descriptions within both ads, and the agency agreed that the interiors used in them were ‘show flats’ and not the real properties for rent. They subsequently gave the ASA assurances that future advertising would be more accurate.

December 20, 2017

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