Contacting us about your complaint
The agent is not listed as a member of your scheme – what can I do?
You can contact the scheme they belong to.
If they’re not a member of any scheme, this may be illegal, however some property agents are not required to be members of a redress scheme in devolved nations e.g. letting agents in Scotland. You should contact your local council so they can investigate.
What if the agent has stopped trading?
What we can do depends on what stage your complaint was at when the agent stopped trading. We’ll let you know when we have all the details.
We may not be able to get the documents we need from the agent, but we will still review the complaint. If we award you compensation, we would not be able to make the agent pay, but you may, in certain circumstances, be able to take them to court and use our review to help your case.
Why do I have to fill in your Complaints Form?
Our Complaints Form is an essential tool to help us gather and properly investigate the details of your complaint. It also gives us your permission to start our investigation.
If you have already written to us with details of your complaint, we will fill in the form for you if we can. Then we will ask you to check everything is right, and sign the form to agree the contents and give us authority to go ahead with your complaint.
Can someone help me complain about my agent to you?
Yes, you can ask a friend or family member to help, or a third party like a legal representative or someone from Citizen’s Advice.
We can deal with them instead of you throughout the process if you prefer – we just need a letter of authority from you so we know we have your permission.
Download a letter of authority template here.
Can you consider my complaint without the agent’s final viewpoint letter?
Yes, we can. We have to give the agent the chance to resolve your complaint through their own complaints process. However, if you can show us you have chased them for a response and they haven’t replied at all or sent you a final viewpoint letter within eight weeks, we will contact them to find out why. We may then go ahead with a review of your complaint without their final viewpoint letter.
What evidence do I need to support my complaint?
When we look at any complaint, we need to know it is genuine and that the allegation against the agent is backed up by evidence.
You can see what evidence we usually need to review complaints – at https://www.tpos.co.uk/consumers/completing-the-complaints-form.
We only need to see copies of your evidence. Please don’t send originals because we cannot send them back to you.
I need documents in a different format – can you help?
Are there timescales for raising a complaint with you?
You need to refer your complaint to us within 12 months of the date of the business’ final response. If there is a reason why you are unable to do so, please write to us and include any appropriate evidence. Please note, the court system allows you a period of 6 years to refer matters. TPO is not a court and our process will not prevent you from using the courts should you reject our decision or decide to withdraw, at any stage, from the process.
Can I send extra evidence to support my complaint?
We use the evidence you send to make our decision. Before our review, we need to see the complaint correspondence between you and the agent. We may also ask you for other evidence if we need it.
After the proposed decision, we can only consider ‘new’ evidence for a representation – which means evidence that wasn’t available before the review.
Can I add new complaints to the review?
In line with our Terms of Reference, we usually only consider complaints that have gone through the agent’s in-house complaints process. However, if you have a new complaint, let us know. We will consider the details and decide the best way to handle it.
- put our review of your original complaint on hold while we ask the agent for their comments
- start a new review for the new complaint
- ask you to contact the agent so they can respond to the new complaint.
What if the agent doesn’t send their file?
If the agent doesn’t send us their file by the deadline, we will do the review without it; using the evidence we have.
Can I see a copy of the agent’s file?
We can only show you documents if it is fair and legal to do so. When we send our proposed decision we will include copies of any relevant documents you haven’t seen if it will help explain the decision, and if we can do it legally. We will allow you a reasonable time to consider the documents. Please be aware that the business you are in dispute with also has the same rights to request sight of documents you have submitted.
Cross border complaints
Our dispute resolution service can also resolve complaints between member agents established in the United Kingdom and consumers resident in another European Union Member State.