Agents sue Denver brokerage over unpaid commissions

bamboo sign

A Bamboo real estate listing in Houston. (Courtesy Andrea Lightfoot)

Twelve former real estate agents and associates claim a Denver-based brokerage is refusing to pay more than $100,000 in commissions.

In a lawsuit filed Nov. 17 in Denver County District Court, Houston broker Andrea Lightfoot and 11 other plaintiffs allege that Denver-based Bamboo Realty failed to pay a total of $140,000 in commissions.

Lightfoot worked for Bamboo from October 2011 to September 2015 in Houston.

Reached by phone, Lightfoot said Sarah Jones – who co-owns Bamboo Realty with husband Brian – was always late with payments. She said she first noticed a serious problem in May 2016.

“She got in over her head and didn’t change her lifestyle,” Lightfoot said. “She just spent all of our money and couldn’t pay us back.”

Lightfoot is owed $21,600, the lawsuit claims.

Sarah and Brian Jones agreed to pay sales associates and agents a percentage of each sale or lease. In an emailed statement, Brian Jones said Bamboo Realty has closed.

“We exhausted all of our business and personal resources to make it work, but in August made the hard decision to close our doors. There are some agents and vendors who have not received their full compensation, and for that we are deeply sorry. “

Bamboo Realty received payment from management companies after their staffers closed transactions, but the Joneses kept 100 percent of the money, the lawsuit states. It says the plaintiffs repeatedly demanded payment but didn’t receive compensation.

The Joneses moved to Denver last May to open an office, Lightfoot said.

“She’s good at what she does,” Lightfoot said. “She’s definitely still making a lot of money. She always has.”

Clay Joyner, another plaintiff in the suit, said he went to work for competitor ULR Properties after broker commissions were continually delayed. Bamboo owes Joyner $11,800, according to the lawsuit.

“It was a multimillion-dollar business being run from her kitchen table,” Joyner said when reached by phone. “It’s disappointing because you thought you knew someone and I thought I did.”

Brooke Meyer and Rachel Ellis with Livelihood Law and Robert Debes with Shellist Lazarz Slobin LLP filed the case on behalf of the plaintiffs.

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