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Estate agent’s ‘£1’ ad receives complaint as sellers face £300 bill to use own solicitor

  • 20/01/2021
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Estate agent’s ‘£1’ ad receives complaint as sellers face £300 bill to use own solicitor
An online estate agent claiming to sell homes for £1 agreed to remove the advert from its website after a complaint revealed customers would be forced to pay hundreds of pounds to use the firm’s services.


The advert, which remains on My Online Estate Agent’s home page, has two buttons which say “Sell for just £1” and “Let for just £1” and a large heart which also reads £1.

After clicking on “Sell for just £1” vendors are taken to another screen which in smaller print explains by using the estate agency to sell your home you are agreeing to using its recommended conveyancing partner for a fixed fee of £595.00 excluding VAT.

Homeowners who do not want to use the firm for their conveyancing requirements have to pay £300 to opt out of the service.

The Advertising Standard Agency (ASA) received a complaint that the advert was misleading from a member of the public who knew the company’s conveyancing policy and fee structure.

The ASA approached My Online Estate Agent with the concerns and the company agreed to remove the advert.

A spokesman for the ASA said: “We have received an assurance from the advertiser that it will remove the claim from its website.

“We understand that might take a couple of weeks given some broader changes it is carrying out. Nevertheless, we expect to see the claim removed as soon as possible and will take further action if the advertiser does not comply.”

A spokesman for My Online Estate Agent said: “My Online Estate Agent (MOEA) is fully cooperating with the ASA to resolve the transparency of fees relating to our services.

“In consultation with the ASA we have agreed to make adjustments to the presentation of fees, terms and conditions on the MOEA website that overcome the matter to their satisfaction.

“Some of these changes will be immediate, while others will take a little more time to address. As MOEA are fully complying with the requirements of the ASA no formal action has been brought against MOEA. We are fully committed to ensuring our obligations remain in accordance with the Advertising Code.”


Estate agent adverts banned

The ASA has also issued formal rulings to two other estate agents, and for advertising properties for sale that were no longer on the market, banning them from continuing to advertise the homes.

The same four-bedroom detached home was advertised on and for sale in July but had not been on the market since 2017.

Both companies were ordered to remove the listing.


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