Orange County - HomeVestors of America's trademark "We Buy Ugly Houses" would appear to be unique enough to avoid any confusion with would-be competitors. However, despite a history of vigorous enforcement of the trademark and a USPTO registration, HomeVestors was recently forced to enforce its rights again. In a recently filed lawsuit against the House Buyer Network and Duane LeGate, HomeVestors claims that the two have made unauthorized use of the trademark on multiple occasions. The lawsuit, filed in the Northern District of Texas, accuses the two defendants of trademark infringement, unfair competition, unjust enrichment, injury to business reputation and breach of contract.
Complicating the case is the fact that a representative for HomeVestors claims that House Buyer Network and LeGate entered into a settlement agreement with HomeVestors in 2006. As part of that agreement, LeGate transferred a number of domain names to HomeVestors and agreed to stop purchasing keywords that incorporated HomeVestor's registered trademarks. However, the complaint alleges that in violation of that agreement, House Buyer Network continued to purchase Internet advertising keywords containing registered trademarks owned by HomeVestors. House Buyer Network subsequently used these trademarks to advertise its own products and services, as well as to gain increased search engine popularity. HomeVestors is seeking treble and exemplary damages, an injunction to prevent further use of its trademarks, attorney's fees and court costs.
Based in Dallas, Texas, HomeVestors of America is one of the top purchasers of houses in the United States. In addition to buying houses, HomeVestors trains and supports franchisees that buy and rehab residential properties. Homevestors is not just a top franchiser, but it also prides itself in making a positive impact in the communities surrounding its franchises. Its competitor House Buyer Network also buys houses from consumers looking to sell fast. And like HomeVestors, House Buyer Network claims to be one of the fastest buyers and sellers of houses Nationwide since 2002.