Shelter’s Income and expenditure figures highlighted13:57 PM, 4th February 2019
About 2 weeks ago 35
My wife and I recently paid a £5k reservation fee to an Estate Agent, in order to reserve a property with development potential that we liked the look of. When we tried to arrange a viewing they didn’t turn up, and subsequently all of our emails and calls were unanswered. The most recent was a recorded delivery letter asking for the deposit back. This was again ignored.
We previously spoke to the Property Ombudsman, who confirmed they were members and held client funds in a separated account. We have subsequently been advised that the agent has let the membership lapse and are no longer under their jurisdiction. Some digging around on Trust Pilot shows other have had the same problem. Some further digging on the directors shows that they seem to open and close estate agencies regularly. They are always based in Halifax.
I would really like to get our money back, and have but have been advised that it is not worth paying a fee to a solicitor (one has quoted £600 to serve the legal notice), as even if we go to court and win the case, we are unlikely to get them to pay the money back. It doesn’t seem right that people can commit regular fraud like this without any redress.
Does anyone have any experience of a similar case, and advice as to what action to take?
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