A court has ordered a temporary stop on real estate seminars endorsed by HGTV stars Tarek El Moussa and Christina Anstead, with the Federal Trade Commission claiming the promotion efforts on the classes were “misleading.”
In its complaint Friday, the FTC said that Utah-based Zurixx LLC advertised “free” real estate seminars that used endorsements by the popular El Moussa and Anstead to lure attendees. However, at the events, the attendees were urged to sign up for a three-day class costing $1,997.
More from Deadline
That class instructed attendees to apply for new credit cards and increase the credit limits on existing cards. Once that was accomplished, the FTC claimed instructors would try to get signups using the enlarged credit to pay for additional training costing more than $41,000.
Zurixx would offer refunds when customers complained, the FTC said, but only if customers agreed to refrain from writing negative reviews or speaking to regulators.
Zurixx issued a statement saying it welcomes the scrutiny and anticipates “a positive outcome as we work directly and openly with the agencies involved.” In the meantime, Zurixx’s assets have been frozen and could be used to reimburse customers.
HGTV has not yet commented.
This is not the first complaint on real estate seminars involving the former couple, whose publicized divorce saw them continue to work together.
In 2016, complains ere received on their seminar program “Success, Path, Education,” which advertised that it will teach student the secrets of their success. The then-married El Moussas did not attend at least some of the seminars.
Christina Anstead (then El Moussa) told ABC News that she and Tarek were proud of their program.
“I stand by our product,” she said. “It’s our tools, it’s our system. It’s what Tarek and I do. I’ve only heard very minimal complaints.”