Latest TPO updates:

Title Issues - Misleading Omission

Published on Thursday, 05 December 2013. Posted in Case Studies

Complaint

Following the discovery of issues concerning access and a leasehold title, the potential buyer, Mrs C, withdrew from the transaction and raised a complaint against the Agent stating that this information should have been divulged to her at an earlier stage which, if it had been, would have resulted in her not incurring legal and surveying costs. The Agent responded by pointing that the issues concerned fell within her conveyancer’s responsibility, adding that they were not made aware of either issue by the Seller.

Neighbouring Development - Misleading Omission

Published on Thursday, 05 December 2013. Posted in Case Studies

Complaint

Following their third viewing, Mr and Miss B made a number of offers for the Property the last of which was accepted. Conveyancers were appointed and a survey instructed.

However, several weeks into the transaction Mr and Miss B viewed a local news programme where it was reported that a large development of 1,200 houses, a retail park and a waterside park were planned in an area 200 metres away from the Property. After further research Mr and Miss B found that the draft proposal had been made public several months before they viewed the Property. They decided to withdraw from the transaction and subsequently complained that the Agent had failed to disclose this information to them, despite stating that they had raised questions about proposed local developments during their viewings. The Agent contested that Mr and Miss B had raised such questions.

 

Mineshaft - Misleading Omission

Published on Thursday, 05 December 2013. Posted in Case Studies

Complaint

In this case, the potential buyers, Mr and Mrs A, alleged that the Agent had failed to inform them that there were environmental issues in respect of the Property and asserted that, had they been made aware, they would not have proceeded to make an offer and thereafter incurred the costs that they did.

Opening Hours - Misleading Action

Published on Thursday, 05 December 2013. Posted in Case Studies

Complaint

Shortly after the commencement of the tenancy, the Tenants, Mr and Miss F, raised concerns regarding the Agent’s communication. Firstly, Mr and Miss F alleged that the Agent had provided them with a misleading response in relation to them querying the trading hours of the business on the ground floor of the Property. Secondly, Mr and Miss F raised concerns regarding the condition of the Property.

Possession order - Misleading Omission

Published on Thursday, 05 December 2013. Posted in Case Studies

Complaint

In this case, the Tenant, Mr E, complained that the Agent should not have let the Property given that they were aware that a possession order had already been served prior to the commencement of the tenancy. The Agent failed to respond to the complaint.

Disclosure of Burglaries - Misleading Omission

Published on Thursday, 05 December 2013. Posted in Case Studies

Complaint

The complainant, Miss D (on behalf of herself and four other Tenants) complained to the Agent that they should have been informed that the Property had been burgled on two occasions prior to them entering into the tenancy agreement and that the security measures previously recommended by the police following the first burglary had not been implemented.

Right of way - Misleading Action

Published on Thursday, 05 December 2013. Posted in Case Studies

Complaint

In this case the tenant, Mr C, alleged that the Agent had provided him with misleading information concerning a right of way across the Property. The Agent responded stating that the information had been provided to them in good faith by the Landlord.

Interim Report: December 2013

Published on Thursday, 05 December 2013. Posted in Press Releases

The Property Ombudsman (TPO) has issued his latest Interim Report for 2013, which includes:

  • The latest membership and consumer enquiry statistics
  • Consumer case studies for sales and lettings that were supported by the Ombudsman
  • The Ombudsman's views on;
    • The impact of new The Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations (2008) (CPRs) for the property industry, which replaced the Property Misdescriptions Act after it was repealed in October 2013
    • This year's ruling from the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) that requires agents to disclose all non-optional fee charges to tenants with the rental figure in their media advertisements as of November 2013.

Residents Parking - Misleading Action

Published on Thursday, 05 December 2013. Posted in Case Studies

Complaint

Following commencement of the tenancy, the Tenants found that the residents parking that the Agent had advertised with the Property, did not exist. They immediately raised the issue with the Landlord, Mrs B, and sought to renegotiate the tenancy terms. Mrs B promptly complained to the Agent.

Disclosure of building works - Misleading Omission

Published on Thursday, 05 December 2013. Posted in Case Studies

Complaint

The Tenants, Mr and Mrs A, agreed to rent a fourth floor apartment in London for 18 months without the knowledge that six weeks after the start of the tenancy, the building the apartment was situated in was scheduled for major redevelopment works. According to Mr and Mrs A, had they known, they would not have signed the tenancy agreement and,as such, blamed the Agent for not providing them with all the information they needed to come to an informed decision.

The Property Ombudsman launches the UK's first Code of Practice for Buying Agents

Published on Monday, 18 November 2013. Posted in Press Releases

The Property Ombudsman (TPO) is launching a new Code of Practice to cater for the growing number of Buying Agents acting for consumers buying property in the UK.

TPO provides a free and impartial dispute resolution service for consumers and will be implementing The Buying Agent Code of Practice on 1st January 2014. The new Code has been designed to create a uniform set of standards for buying agents based in the UK to protect the interests of consumers and to promote best practice in the industry.

Ombudsman Christopher Hamer Responds to Yesterday's Dispatches Programme Aired on Channel 4:

Published on Tuesday, 29 October 2013. Posted in Press Releases

Channel 4 Dispatches has raised an important matter. We were contacted by the filmmakers and stressed the point to them that too many consumers are unaware that these practices are illegal and therefore fail to complain.

The key issue at the heart of this matter is consumer education. We hope programmes such as these assist in raising awareness and educating consumers so they understand their rights and can identify when and how to complain.

 

TPO Expels London Agent

Published on Friday, 06 September 2013. Posted in Press Releases

Lexton Property Services failed to pay tenant and landlord awards upheld by the Ombudsman following several persistent breaches of TPO's Lettings Code of Practice.

Lexton Property Services, a former lettings agent, has been expelled and refused future membership from The Property Ombudsman scheme (TPO) for a minimum of three years following several serious breaches of its Code of Practice.

TPO Expels Agent for Failure to Pay Tenant Award

Published on Friday, 06 September 2013. Posted in Press Releases

London Rentals UK expelled from TPO full membership for two years following a serious breach of TPO's Code of Practice.

London Rentals UK has been refused renewal of its membership with The Property Ombudsman scheme (TPO) for two years following its failure to pay an award as directed by the Ombudsman following his review of a complaint.

Ombudsman Scheme Expels Yorkshire Estate Agency

Published on Thursday, 18 July 2013. Posted in Press Releases

WYL Ltd, a Yorkshire sales and lettings estate agency, has been expelled from membership of The Property Ombudsman scheme due to a failure to pay the Ombudsman's award and other breaches of the Code of Practice.

WYL Ltd, of 1 Russell Street, Keighley, BD21 2JU, had committed serious breaches of the TPO Lettings Code of Practice and failed to pay an award of £3,450 made against it by the Ombudsman, Christopher Hamer.

The Property Ombudsman Welcomes Government Support for a Code of Practice for Letting Agents

Published on Thursday, 18 July 2013. Posted in Press Releases

The Property Ombudsman (TPO) responds to new report published by the Communities and Local Government Committee on the Private Rental Sector published today

As the UK's largest property ombudsman scheme, with more than 22,000 sales and lettings branches registered, Ombudsman Christopher Hamer was invited to present evidence during the Select Committee's recent investigation into the Private Rental Sector.

The Property Ombudsman Reveals Why Client Money Protection Is a Necessity for the UK Lettings Market

Published on Monday, 15 July 2013. Posted in Press Releases

The Property Ombudsman (TPO) scheme has backed calls by its registered agents and the industry to make Client Money Protection (CMP) cover available to all UK lettings agents.

Up until this month, CMP cover was only available through a number of trade bodies. The introduction of two new CMP providers this month will enable letting agents that are not registered with a trade body to sign up for cover.