eMoov subject of follow-up complaint to advertising watchdog

Online agent eMoov has been the subject of a complaint to the Advertising Standards Authority.

The complaint, a follow-up to one made earlier, has been resolved informally.

A spokesperson for the ASA said: “We received a complaint about a claim on eMoov Ltd’s website that stated ‘With 99% of advertised price achieved we get you more money for your property’.

“The complainant, who cited a previous ASA informally resolved case where we had asked the advertiser to make clear that it referred to the last advertised price as opposed to the first asking price, challenged whether the ad was still misleading.

“We approached the advertiser with the concerns that had been raised. It acted promptly to amend the claim and we also received assurances that the rest of the website would reflect those changes.

“On that basis we considered the matter resolved and closed the case informally.”

On eMoov’s site yesterday, it appeared that all the claims being made were in full accordance with the outcomes of previous ASA cases.

The original complaint against eMoov was reported by us here

That was in February.

Last June, the ASA upheld two complaints against eMoov while earlier this month it upheld three

We asked eMoov founder Russell Quirk about recent comments he made on LinkedIn which suggested that complaints made about eMoov and  “numerous other agents” were vexatious. He described it as “a revolving door of administrative bull sh*t”.

Quirk told EYE that this was not a criticism: “[It is] just a fact that multiple ASA complaints are levied against many agents (largely by competitors) and therefore these things should be seen in context. It appears to be competitor angst rather than anything else.

“I suspect that there are not many competitor businesses online, high street or otherwise that would come out of ASA scrutiny entirely unscathed given that the ASA are very adept indeed at probing quite specific semantics around marketing messages in great detail.”

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33 Comments

  1. Frown Please

    Is there a limit on the number of informal responses to the same complaint? Reuse the same complained about message. A month after told not to use it.

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  2. AgencyInsider

    ‘semantics around marketing messages’ Is that Quirk-speak for ‘be able to spot porkies when they see them’?

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  3. Robert May

    The ease and speed with which last advertised price can be and is changed to fall in line with any offer received makes any claim based on manipulated listings,  at the very least, deceitful.

    This practice is one of 5 individual portal juggles that are used to mis-represent  an agent’s performance,  Unfortunately the portals claim not to be able to detect the practice yet given a firm or outcode district all portal juggling is now instantly detectable with the intention  to report malpractice to the redress schemes and NTSEAT on a daily basis.

    A clear message ought to be; clean up or clear off.

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  4. smile please

    This would be laughable if this was not true.

    I assume ASA have put Emoov on friends and family to help keep the phone bills down?

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  5. PeeBee

    Website now states

    99% of last advertised price achieved across our most recent 3000 sales

    and

    99% of asking price typically achieved (last advertised).

    and

    Our recent performance shows that we typically achieve sold prices of 99% of the last asking price compared with the average UK agent at just 97% (Source: Hometrack 2016).

    and

    With 99% of last advertised price achieved we get you more money for your property…

    and

    oh, never mind – ASA have got a few more there to play with…

    Would never have happened on The Quirkster’s Marketing Minion’s watch.

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    1. Frown Please

      Shame he got the boot. Gives us more ASA entertainment though.

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  6. MoveInMoveOut

    Traditional high street agents are running scared, so maybe they should look to reduce their own fees.

    The hybrid model is the way forward with transparent fixed fee pricing but still offering a traditional NO SALE NO FEE option.

    Beware of “Loan Only” PAY LATER fee options.

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    1. PeeBee

      “Traditional high street agents are running scared… the way forward with transparent fixed fee pricing…”

      With a fee of £295, allegedly covering the entire civilized world – and only 20 properties on your books I would say it is YOU running scared, matey – straight to the bottom of the pond where all the budgeteers live.

      Hope you like it there – don’t bother keeping me a place.

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      1. Trevor Mealham

        @PeeBee agree.  £295 can’t provide all traditional services.

        We are seeing many big agents looking to offer a budget entry listing only (by up front model) that will disrupt the budget disrupters.  Its key that traditional agents then outline the reason to upgrade to higher cost models that stand a better chance of finding best buyers at times higher sstc prices.

        Pay peanuts and. ………………….. as the saying goes.

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        1. PeeBee

          Mr Mealham – a polite request:

          WILL

          YOU

          PLEASE

          STOP

          AGREEING

          WITH ME!

          It’s not normal.

          ;o)

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          1. PeeBee

            Someone obviously not in a frivolous mood today.

            Twice, to be exact.

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  7. Property Paddy

    Bored with on liners just praying on the weak, the stupid, the vulnerable and the greedy!

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  8. mrharvey

    This story is head-in-hands embarrassing. Mr Quirk, and all other agents, if you wilfully and remorselessly disregard basic facts that have an impact on the consumer, you are damaging not only your own business but the industry as a whole!

    ASA – Can we stop resolving matters ‘informally’. You’re there for a reason, yaknow!!

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  9. Certus

    I wonder when Emoov will offer a ‘price guarantee’. He did once before from his high street branch during the 2008 recession. Obviously moved on before it hit the fan

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  10. smile please

    Any reason comments have been deleted (not mine) – Do they someway break the forum rules?

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    1. Robert May

      perhaps there’s a steward’s enquiry over the begathon results? perhaps the robot was a bit sensitive? who knows? who cares?

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      1. smile please

        I found it interesting so i care.

        I also wanted to comment on your comment, about a potential buy out. Was think LSL have been very quite regarding the online thing ……

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        1. Robert May

          Whether or not Emoov secure even more finance won’t change the underlying business model. A firm has spent 10x what Emoov has, they have secured more listings but lost more money. The figures are clear spend £30 million  to lose £12 million.

          Estate agency is a local business for local people. Hybrid doesn’t work nationally

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          1. smile please

            “Estate agency is a local business for local people. Hybrid doesn’t work nationally”

            Too true, and locally its a fad, agents not confident in their own ability to take out a lease.

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            1. Robert May

              We have a storming Hybrid** who dominates a niche coastal market for 2nd and exclusive homes. her buyers are out of the area and  deal direct with her rather than  troubling to go via the portals.

               

              ** a genuine Hybrid,  not a failed traditional who has gone online and failed at that too and is now distancing themselves from  the dirty word they did so much to dirty.

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      2. Garret2

        Interesting to read what Virgin say about the 3 companies that did make it through…

         

        “These businesses really work.

        They’re already making money, and looking to make more.

        These entrepreneurs will need to prove their revenue and customer base, and explain exactly how they plan to grow.”

         

        ref: https://www.vmbvoom.com/finalists

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  11. Luxus

    From what I have seen of Emoov on their Voom 2016 video and website, this entrepreneur is not going to loose any sleep over ASA rulings or complaints unless it’s a red card offense which shuts down the business. Their CEO is on a mission to disrupt the entire global estate agency sector and potentially, they could become as big as Amazon or Alibaba  at some point in the future if customers prefer their service to the alternatives.

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    1. PeeBee

      Either I’m having an off0-day (entirely possible…) or some people don’t appreciate superbly delivered sarcasm the way I do.

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      1. smile please

        Think you are having an off day chap!

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        1. PeeBee

          I’m genuinely shocked, smile please.

          I honestly thought that ‘Luxus’ was having a complete giraffe at the expense of the mahoosive ego-on-legs that is The Quirkster’s and its’ trip to the stars and beyond in the Starship eMoov, fuelled by the efforts and cash of others… which is clearly spluttering like it’s running on watered down council pop and about to implode on its’ own warped (not a typo) core.

          I simply cannot accept that something so blatantly ridiculous (which is meant in a good way if I am right, of course…) be posted as a serious comment.

          But – if (and I sincerely think it’s a big ‘if’) you’re right and I’m wrong I propose the following:

          1.  I give myself a shake.

          2.  ‘Luxus’ seeks help. Immediate, urgent help.

          We’ll see, I guess…

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    2. Robert May

      Welcome to EYE Sir Richard?

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  12. Chri Wood

    Mr Quirk and his company are a beacon of light for consumers who have been so badly served by the traditional model for so long…

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  13. thetrumanshow69

    As high street estate agents, we don’t half complain a lot about the online agents rather than raising our own game. I worked for a short spell for an online agent but quit as it wasn’t for me, in my mind, it wasn’t real estate agency, no selling, no real completion, just vendors who wanted a cheap deal. This isn’t really a bad thing, its their choice at the end of the day, and no they wont get best price advice as a HSA would give but on the other hand you have some corporates over valuing by tens of thousands sometimes to win instructions to justify fees, not best practice either. The vendors that don’t sell through an online agent will come back to the high street and wont make the same mistake again, so I do really doubt the longevity of these type of businesses but they certainly do not worry me as I think we are targeting different sectors of the market.

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    1. PeeBee

      As high street estate agents, we don’t half complain a lot about the online agents rather than raising our own game.

      WOW – that’s one heck of a blanket you’re shoving the industry under, ‘thetrumanshow69’.

      Care to enlighten your audience as to your helicopter view of ‘the game’ and how you think we, universally, are failing to raise it?

      I, for one, am all ears – or eyes, as the case may be.

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      1. thetrumanshow69

        Bore off you patronizing person.

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        1. PeeBee

          So basically you’re ‘yer typical blowhard’ with one controversial sentence to chuck in like a lit firework then scuttle off to watch what happens.

          Sincerely sorry to have completely wazzed on your squib, that being the case.

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