A poor letting agent?

A poor letting agent?

0:02 AM, 24th April 2023, About 10 months ago 22

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Hello, a large London letting agent found and gave a glowing reference for a tenant, so we took her on. They stated that she was in a £90,000 pa job. It transpired that she was out of work.

They stated that she had only been late paying rent by one day on one occasion. Later, the previous landlord confirmed that he had evicted her for rent arrears.

They produced an employer reference. It transpired that this was a dummy reference from a one man band who was a friend of hers.

She got 2 months behind with the rent so I then investigated and found the truth.

We eventually get her evicted after 11 months and the court awarded us £21K in lost rent.

As the tenant has little assets I would like to make a claim on the letting agent but he says that they got a referencing company to do the reference so it has nothing to do with them and they will fight it through the courts if I pursue it.

My solicitor has been in touch with their solicitor and says it could well cost me £10,000 in legal fees and there is no guarantee that I will win.

Is it worth me risking this sum?

What else can I do to try and recoup the £21,000?

The letting/estate agent has mostly terrible reviews on Trust Pilot but this doesn’t concern them.

Thank you,

Trevor


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Comments

LordOf TheManor

9:56 AM, 24th April 2023, About 10 months ago

First Question::

Which Ombudsman scheme are they members of?

martinB

10:06 AM, 24th April 2023, About 10 months ago

Why not name the letting agent involved so other landlords can be made aware??

SamJonesSMS

10:16 AM, 24th April 2023, About 10 months ago

Reply to the comment left by martinB at 24/04/2023 - 10:06
If OP decides to pursue, there could be a counterclaim for libel.

Bill O'Dell

10:33 AM, 24th April 2023, About 10 months ago

Try the Small Claims Court. You can only claim up to 10k, but it will be you and the Agent together with a Judge in Chambers and a relatively small fee. Worth considering

Simon M

11:05 AM, 24th April 2023, About 10 months ago

The letting agent chose the referencing company so that's a very weak defence. More difficult legally will be the terms in your contract with the agency which will usually be one-sided to minimise their liability for any loss. The more you can show by way of evidence the better.

The Ombudsman's process is more likely successful. The agent may push back but once they realise the next step is for you to refer to the ombudsman they should be prepared to compromise. A big agent has more to lose.

martinB

13:04 PM, 24th April 2023, About 10 months ago

Reply to the comment left by SamJonesSMS at 24/04/2023 - 10:16
If the poster is not lying then it cannot be libel. The agent should be prosecuted for fraud

LordOf TheManor

13:53 PM, 24th April 2023, About 10 months ago

Trevor

Have you obtained a copy of the referencing report? If not, please obtain it and kindly post here what the report evaluated. Then let us know what the 'Recommendations' were and the concluding risk summary.

Providing this information is required to understand what the third party referencing company amounted to. Potential good advice awaits the sight of the report.

Lord

Blodwyn

17:27 PM, 24th April 2023, About 10 months ago

Reply to the comment left by SamJonesSMS at 24/04/2023 - 10:16
Trevor must decide if the 'facts' he alleges are true. If they are, the agent won't sue, they must prove the alleged facts are untrue? Unlikely they would sue anyway, Bad Publicity smells and they would be advised by any competent lawyer that suing in such a case is far too risky?? Who trusts their trade anyway??

John

15:49 PM, 25th April 2023, About 10 months ago

Reply to the comment left by LordOf TheManor at 24/04/2023 - 09:56
Hi,
They are with The Property Ombudsman.

John

15:51 PM, 25th April 2023, About 10 months ago

Reply to the comment left by martinB at 24/04/2023 - 10:06
Hi,
They are a Major London Estate and letting agent so if I named them they might sue me.

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