A highly critical review of Purplebricks by a vendor on TrustPilot raises the question as to whether Local Property Experts could have commercial conflicts of interest.
The unusually negative TrustPilot review, which gives Purplebricks the lowest possible rating against the usual very high ratings, says that the hybrid agent will “be the estate agency for you” if “you discover by chance that your so-called ‘agent’ also appears to work for their own agency in addition to Purplebricks”.
The reviewer concludes that their home was sold, but for far less than expected.
We asked Purplebricks about the claim that Local Property Experts could be working in other agencies, including for their own businesses.
The firm told us that in this particular case, the customer in question was not referring to a Local Property Expert but to a viewing assistant.
A Purplebricks spokesperson said: “As entrepreneurs running their own businesses it is up to individual Local Property Experts to decide whether they pursue additional work, provided it does not give rise to a conflict of interest.
“However, with the strong demand for the Purplebricks offering and the earnings potential, we are not aware of anyone needing to make that choice.
“Many Local Property Experts employ their own experienced viewings assistants, some of whom work full time and others part time.
“As a result they may not undertake work solely for the Local Property Expert, provided always that there is not a conflict of interest.
“In this instance, the customer is referring to a viewings assistant who has her own lettings portfolio, which is not unusual because we do recruit people who have relevant industry experience and knowledge of their local area.”