Claims made by an online agent comparing itself “on a like to like” basis with high street agents, have been the subject of a complaint to the advertising watchdog.
The case has been informally resolved and will go no further.
It is the second time within months that a similar claim by Doorsteps has been the subject of a complaint. In August, the complainant was the industry regulator, the National Trading Standards Estate Agency Team.
That complaint was also informally resolved.
In the new case, the complainant drew the Advertising Standards Authority’s attention to the claims made by Doorsteps on its own website.
The text said: “Based on a direct comparison of like for like services, provided by the current average High street Agent fee of 1.2% (inc VAT) compared to the current fixed fee charged by Doorsteps of £99inc VAT (excluding viewing services in this package; optional add-on).
“Based on average home price in London of £484,716 on the government press release on house price index in July 2016.”
An ASA spokesperson said: “A complainant challenged whether it was misleading as it didn’t fully detail the differences between the services being compared.
“The advertiser agreed to amend the claims on its website so that all material differences between the services being compared are clear and prominent.”
In August, the ASA said the Doorsteps website had stated: “With Doorsteps you can sell your house for less than a hundred pounds, without leaving your home.
“An honest, transparent and hassle free way for you to sell your property, with a great level of service at a fantastic price.”
Small print had added: “Based on a direct comparison of like for like services, provided by the current average High street Agent fee of 1.3% (inc VAT) compared to the current fixed fee charged by Doorsteps of £99 inc VAT.”
NTSEAT challenged whether the comparative claims were misleading and could be substantiated.
On that occasion, an ASA spokesperson said: “Upside Capital Ltd trading as Doorsteps gave their assurance that they would amend their ad so that it stated any material differences between Doorsteps’ services or packages and those offered by ‘the average high street agent’ that they were being compared with.”
Last month Doorsteps – founded by Akshay Ruparelia – concluded a crowd-funding campaign which raised more than £870,000, way over its target of £400,000. The firm, which says it is worth £18m, raised over £500,000 in an earlier campaign last year.