Errors by Letting Agency?

Errors by Letting Agency?

9:35 AM, 2nd October 2023, About 2 months ago 5

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Hello, two years ago we completely renovated my partner’s home before offering it up to rent through a full management letting agent.

Recently, following a failed gas boiler safety check, we arranged for our gas engineer to fit a new boiler. After his visit, he warned us the property was in a terrible state with the tenant filling the rooms from floor to ceiling with snake-breeding cages. We asked the letting agency to do a review visit which confirmed our worst fears and the tenant was issued with a section 21.

Fortunately, they left almost immediately but on gaining full access to the property we have had to completely empty the garden and house of rubbish. The carpets were wrecked, the internal front door smashed and thrown behind the garden shed.

On demanding answers from the Letting Agent we were informed the employee responsible for making site visits had been sacked for this and other issues. The records show that he had not actually been in the house since March 22 as the tenant had repeatedly claimed either or he or his family were suffering from COVID.

We were never informed of problems and even a look at the garden ( full of old furniture and rubbish) and a look through the front window would have caused him to realise there were problems.

To restore the property back to the lettable condition has cost us a week’s labour and £3k with a retained deposit of £900.

I feel the Letting Agent is responsible and should be paying the balance, perhaps allowing a 40% reduction in the cost of replacement carpets.

Opinions please,


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Peter Hennessey

14:05 PM, 2nd October 2023, About 2 months ago

Good luck with getting money from your agent? What were the terms of your contract and his obligations to you?
Was he responsible for inspections or just collecting the rent or did he simply get you the tenant?
My wife and I self manage all our portfolio of properties and sacked off our agent once we had retired from full time work. We are very careful how we choose the tenant and always chase up references and more importantly their credit history.
It's a good indicator but even with all that in the nearly 30 years we have been landlords you will.always get one that slips the net circumstances change etc!
I think just bite the bullet and be more hands on next time?

Graham Bowcock

16:20 PM, 2nd October 2023, About 2 months ago

If this was my agency I would be very embarrassed and would be happy to look at some compromise to sort things out. It's not the agent's faul that the tennat defaulted, but it seems they could have picked it up sooner.

We are rigoruus about inspections as we like to give feedback to our landlords.

Some contribution from the agent would seem right; as to how much it's a horse trade really. It may depend how much they want your future business!


13:39 PM, 3rd October 2023, About 2 months ago

In a way, think yourself lucky the rent had been paid and the tenant left instantly. You could have 12 months of no rent and court fees to add to this.

I would however, go after the agent, they may well have sacked the individual that failed, but they also hired him in the first place and failed to ensure your contract was being serviced correctly.

Michael Booth

5:41 AM, 5th October 2023, About 2 months ago

Surely you read the contract that you had with the agent, if you haven't and there is no provision for regular inspections and reports you are scuppered . Hard lesson and expensive lesson.


9:45 AM, 7th October 2023, About 2 months ago

There are agents out there who are just there to collect the rent and not do much else. My first ever agent stole from me. They collected the rent, but I also had my own records. I was keeping track, and I realised the rent wasn't coming in monthly, but maybe quarterly, and then they'd try and claim x was paid twice, when it was only paid once. I sent them my statement - pointed out the rent was missing. No satisfactory reply.

In the end I took them to court and they just jumped ship (both directors resigned from companies house). God only knows who else they were ripping off, but I got my CCJ on them as I won in court and although they said they'd defend the claim and submit evidence. Nothing came in. I also informed the benefits agency because (worst of all) they were taking HOUSING BENEFIT money and not paying it to me! I didn't pursue the tenant for the missing money. I got a new agent and started a clean slate. If I were you, I'd check on any other properties they manage for you. And then find another agent!

You can try and lean on them and insist that they should compensate you, but I doubt they'll go for it. Tenants are entitled to 'quiet enjoyment', they don't expect their letting agent to come round every 5 minutes looking through the window...

That said, I'm in an area where there is selective licensing. The council wrote to me about rubbish in the front yard (I think a broken settee) and it being an eye-sore, and that I needed to remove it and they'll be back to do an inspection again. I immediately told my agent who went round there and now keeps a closer eye on her.

But with many agents, I think as long as the cash comes in, they'll pay it across and they're not commenting on how messy people live and how many animals there are in the house etc., or the state of the carpets as you can't demand that your tenant cleans their carpet... some people want around the house with their shoes on! Some people have kids and dogs that make a mess. What can you say? They broke the door, but they didn't ask you to fix it. They put it outside so that when you get your property back, your door is still there. Sometimes, its just how people live! Its 'wear and tear' and that comes out of our maintenance budget.

This is another reason why people like short lets. You hand over your property in a 'completely renovated' condition and you get it back that way. The cleaner will tell you otherwise.

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