Purplebricks founders Michael and Kenny Bruce disappear from Rich List

The founders of Purplebricks, Michael and Kenny Bruce, have slipped off The Sunday Times Rich List.

Last year, the Bruces entered the Rich List for the first time, placed as the 630th wealthiest people in Britain with an estimated wealth of £190m.

The figure made them richer than the Duke of Marlborough, Sir Rod Stewart and Sir Tim Rice.

However, yesterday’s publication of this year’s Rich List shows that the brothers have slipped off it.

The Sunday Times referred to this in its front page lead story, but offered no details.

The latest Rich List shows Foxtons founder Jon Hunt still riding high in 98th place with an estimated wealth of £1.4bn. Hunt, who sold Foxtons for £375m at the height of the boom, has since successfully gone into commercial property.

Paul Rooney, owner of Arun Estates, remains in the Rich List in joint 830th place with an estimated wealth of £146m.

Landlords Fergus and Judith Wilson are in the list at an estimated £140m.


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  1. Hillofwad71

    Another busy week for Sporting Ken  dissipating his wealth. Wednesday he finds himself in a bit of a quandary!

    Now the football season has ended he has more time to spend with his racehorses rather than his football club Larne.

    On wednesday his racehorse Colonel  Frank is entered in the 4.15 at Yarmouth and his Princess Kiera is entered in the 5,55 at Bath .Even if he has a chopper on standby to whisk him off extremely unlikely to make both.A  crying shame

    If he decides to go to Bath perhaps he could pop in and say Hello to this house seller and explain that despite chopping off £70k in 2 price changes it’s still unsold more than a year after lsiting


    Or if he decides to go to Yarmouth this one has been listed over a year too with 2 price changes lopping off £15k but still unsold


    Decisions ,decisions




    1. SLF

      If you’re an agent (which I’m guessing you’re not) then the obvious answer is that they’ve dropped the price but not by enough. This is obviously not a problem high street agents have. They always value spot on and never have to ask for reductions or have sellers with over inflated expectations. Equally there’s clearly no examples of houses being on the market for a year or so with high street agents. Quite obviously this must only happen in the online sector.

      The high street agent must  also be doing something that the online agent doesn’t like quality photos and floor plans and advertising on RM and Zoopla…. oh, hang on…

      zzzzzz Same old waffle from high street agents who think that they never put a foot out of place.

      1. Moveaside01

        You’re right, High Street Agents don’t always get it right, however, the difference is, we don’t charge when we get it wrong….. That really would be a step too far?

      2. Robert May

        you are forgetting duty of care and skill, that estate agents do not get paid if they do not do what is best for their principal.

        There is about a 10% difference between  full  market value and a forced sale. That is currently a difference that averages  £29,000.

        Like an auction with a single bidder ‘react to enquiry’ sales have only one bidder so the achieved price is rarely the best price.

        Passive intermediary sales where there is effectively no competition between applicants wishing to buy means prices achieved are lower than an agent with a register of known and qualified enquiries who will be made to compete  against each other to buy ( that’s why agents are disliked so much;  for every buyer there is at least one person who missed out.  Accepted KPIs say for 10 viewers, 9 will not  get to buy the  home they viewed)


        Flogging properties at the sporadic whim of  internet enquiries means vendors  might save on fees but they are missing out on price achieved. It looks like the figure is about 5%; on average internet sales are  about £14,500 lower than they could  be.


        Estate agents might not be perfect but as  case law dictates if they aren’t they do not get paid. With pay to list, passive intermediary firms, the contract to list is satisfied once the listing appears…. Fee Please!


      3. Hillofwad71


        “If you’re an agent (which I’m guessing you’re not) then the obvious answer is that they’ve dropped the price but not by enough.”

        A truly lamentable excuse !!!!  Don’t for god’s sake tell the seller that if you are a Bricks LPE

        Well the problem in pricing incorrectly in a falling market is that there is a good chance you missed the buyer you would have found at first llsting .Gone forever .The error compounding as the market falls

        That is the danger when valuing by RM comparables alone.A local agent with the ear to the ground  able to  spot the movements before its too late

        A client of mine always used to put the price up in a bad market as those looking for  a £300k house would set their search criteria higher knowing that they can take a chisel to the price


        Ken has more chance of getting a winner

        Asc 1mSft C43yHc 7K 4/6 btn 8¾L, Greek Kodiac 14/1Mick Quinn——
        Wdr 5fGd C53yHc 4K 6/10 btn 5L, Invincible Larne 9/1Mick Quinn61-9


      4. Woodentop

        Over price, right price and under price have always been around and there can be varied reasons. Often over pricing is either the price the vendor wants and sometimes deluded (ask Ducky), the agent and vendor haven’t a clue, so lets test the market and hope for the best or the worst is the agent that will value at any cost to get it on their books.


        The latter is where up front and fixed fee agents have no incentive to get the value right, they are paid even if it doesn’t sell and of course they are not that bothered how long its stays unsold or worse price reduction, after price reduction.

        1. cyberduck46

          >Often over pricing is either the price the vendor wants and sometimes deluded (ask Ducky)


          Nice try 🙂



          1. Woodentop

            I stand corrected but wasn’t it you that told us that you choose the asking price …. and later had to drop it.

  2. Property Poke In The Eye

    Why wasn’t my name on the list? I am also a Virtual Billionaire  🙂

    1. Bigbee73

      You may be but if you’re an online agent, you won’t be for long!

  3. AgencyInsider

    If I still had tens of millions in my personal bank account I think I could just about live with not being on the Rich List.

  4. Shakka

    I work for PB and funnily enough I’m not on the rich list this year, nor can I afford my mortgage payment this month on the new pay package.. let alone my accountancy bill or fuel to cover my huge territory.

    1. AgentQ73

      Hi Shakka


      Thats not a nice position to be in, my sympathy. Would you mind sharing the new package ?

      1. Shakka

        It’s been mentioned a few times on these threads but in a nutshell they’ve taken away the financial support package that most of us have had to rely on for years because they don’t provide us with near enough business to be self sufficient. Now, if we don’t meet ridiculously high targets, we don’t get any financial support at all outside of the very basic commissions.
        I’ve heard from our lettings colleague that it’s even harder for him as their earnings potential is very low per let and there is very little marketing for the lettings service, lots of their side have taken home just a few hundred pounds for 12+ hours a day whilst working 7 days a week last month.
        They think these targets are reasonable, but they aren’t, they’re contradictory and we have little control over some of them, they say we should be thriving and not need any financial support yet in their statement to the market last week said the U.K. market remains challenging. 
        All of this on top of being ‘self employed’ when we very clearly are not. It’s exploitative.

        1. Truella

          In a similar position to you. It’s the worst. And the fact they’ve just announced the summer conference dates last week is a kick in the teeth. They’re going to spend hundreds of thousands on an event when so many of us are taking home pennies. And we will all be expected to be there. That’s more time out of the work diary to attend which is less opportunity to earn (which we are absolutely desperate to do!) plus cost of travel for those of us not living in the midlands and hotels. 

          1. Rich Buttersmead

            Very strange posts from the above.

            Why on earth are you still at Purplebricks?? Instead of posting on here and complaining, are you not better off looking for a comfortable high street agency job? I bet there are loads of estate agency owners who will look to employ people like yourselfs.

            In the past if I have not felt I was getting a fair deal I leave!! What’s your excuse? I feel sorry for PB at this moment having guys like you on board!!!


            1. Truella

              Yes ofcourse I am looking, you only have to look at the amount of LPEs leaving and who have already left to work that one out. How wonderful if in your area there are an abundance of jobs but that’s not the case nationally.

            2. Hillofwad71

              Rich Buttersmead

              “Why on earth are you still at Purplebricks??”

              Well I guess  currently jobs aren;t easy to come by and perhaps they are actively looking .Don’ t blame the LPEs who have had the goalposts moved on their pay structure


              Applaud them for speaking out which  perhaps  might dissuade others from being suckered in

              1. Rich Buttersmead

                Jobs for average agents are not an easy find but for a great agent there is opportunity, even in this market place!  I am seeking the best agents only and if that person was an x PB I would happily recruit. Sadly I wouldnt be intrested in anyone who can who publiclly cries on a platform like this would be a great fit for my organisation.    Feel free to request CV. I am sure Truella would be most greatful.   

                1. PeeBee

                  Mr Buttersmead

                  Glad to see you are recruiting rather than wishing to be recruited.

                  A CV with such p!$$-poor command of the English language as you display in your post wouldn’t get further than most people’s waste bin.

                  1. Property Pundit

                    It’s his arrogant attitude I can’t get past. What an ar$e!

        2. AgentQ73

          Doesnt sound like a great place to work, do you get any sick pay or holiday pay or is it just tough you dont get paid?
          Would partially explain why the cash burn has slowed down I guess.

          1. Woodentop


            Sounds like the double glazing sales of the 1980’s and 1990’s all over again. Treated staff as canon fodder while the management milked the system to their benefit.

            Noticeable by their absence are the pro “this is the future” supporters of PB!!!!

          2. Eyereaderturnedposter12


            It must be said, if it is really that bad…find another job (I don’t know what your ‘take-home’ figure is, but I’m fairly certain [given your above comments/reading between the lines] it isn’t much- In which case, what do you have to lose?).

            Not wishing to directly address another poster’s obnoxious tone and apparent lack of empathy… there is some consolation that can be taken from the fact that at least you’re not working for Mr Buttersmead…he sounds like the sort of employer you’ll want avoid if you decide to go job-hunting 😉


            1. Property Pundit

              A new poster too I believe. Let’s hope he doesn’t stick around.

    2. cyberduck46

      My LPE left the traditional agency world because he said the writing was on the wall. Local Agents closing down and others up for sale. Worked at PB for just short of 2 years, left and has had 2 jobs since. Now works as Business Development Manager for a Property Auction business.
      Best of luck finding something new. There’s life after PB, if they’ve removed the support they were providing to you.

      1. Woodentop

        Thats 4 jobs!
        No matter how you cut it, LPE’s are treated disgracefully by PB, just the sort of employer one would have questionable confidence for working for and yet there are those that say this is the future!!!!  

  5. WiltsAgent

    Given the number of instructions they are registering each month and the Number of LPE’s they claim to have, it’s not possible to make a living. Around 1300 instructions a month spread over 550 LPE’s at £150 a go gives an average of £450 to £500 per month. No doubt some are doing better than others but to be honest best you get out before it goes splat.

    You are right, you are being exploited by a company that couldn’t care less about either it’s client’s or staff, take a look at the mess Russell Quirck left behind. Good luck.

    1. PeeBee


      Para 1 – suggest you have another look at your figures.

      Para 2 – back on point!

  6. Rich Buttersmead

    Any takers for Truella…. Loyal = just one of her qualities.

    1. Hillofwad71

       Why do you find it funny that Bricks are exploiting their employees.She clearly feels disgruntled,understadably so and speaking out .Let’s  hope that  she doesn’t turn up for an interview ith you behind the desk guffawing and have it rammed down her throat

    2. Eagle60

      Unnecessary attacking of another person, is it all just to try and get likes on an online publication or just insecurity?

      1. Property Pundit

        Apparently works for PB so, yeah, looking for all the security he can.

    3. Eyereaderturnedposter12

      That would be one desirable quality more than you’ve displayed today, Mr Buttersmead…

    4. PeeBee

      Loyalty is a two-way street, Mr Buttersmead.

    5. Property Pundit

      How do you know the poster is female?

      1. Bigbee73

        How many aliases does RQ have??

  7. JustPlainSavage04

    Richard Buttersmead works for Purplebricks, explains his posts on here and Estate Agent Today.

    1. Property Pundit

      On another site:
      Richard Buttersmead 07 May 2019 08:08 AM
      Haters be loving this news! Purplebricks can now concentrate on winning here in the UK which I believe will now grow exponentially.
      Richard Buttersmead 07 May 2019 08:32 AM
      Just like the above companies who we all know are doing great things PB can concentrate on what works!
      This explains everything. 

  8. Chris Wood

    A very sad story from these apparent whistleblowers. If they are genuine, their stories mirror others I have heard from confirmed ex and serving LPEs’ and strongly suggest that, if true, as has previously been published on PIE in the comments section, that LPEs are employed and not self-employed at all.

  9. htsnom79

    I’ve said it before so I’ll say it again, the work life balance and income of individual lpe’s, territory owners, call centre operatives, upline management, associated services et al is moot, the fundamental point is that PB are not good at what they do which is the whole point of being in any business ever created, as another poster recently commented they’re the smallest agent in every town in which they have a whiff of presence, and they’re krap, I don’t feel sorry for any of them, as for PB management shame on you for creating such a cynical grabfest totally at odds with what the point of the job is, list and walk, disgusting, I hope your earholes turn into ar51eholes and you soil all over your suit.

    Ditto their apologists.

  10. Woodentop

    I wonder how long it will take the mainstream media to pick-up on these stories of “how the future should be”. At this rate they will have no LPE’s and any sniff by the markets they can’t operate ….. the end is nigh. 
    PB and Bruce’s CV is getting more and more questionable as each day goes by.
    I see PB share price hasn’t recovered and looked like it was suddenly going to fall off the cliff when it suddenly dived just before lunch and again just before close with a hick-up to end at 105.20p (108.38 start).

  11. MTOM1

    Business is a cutthroat game. Whilst I am unhappy at the reputational damage PB may have bought our industry there is no getting away from the fact that Michael Bruce has done rather well out of it. I imagine he is not that bothered what people think.

    Reading the above comments it reminds me a little of the Harry Enfield sketch -like it or not-Bruces are Considerably Richer Than You !!

  12. AgentQ73

    PB have gone to the trouble of changing their website so the total number and churn of their LPEs cant be monitored. I think that tells a tale.


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