A lettings agent in Slough, called Saville Park Ltd, has been excluded from The Property Ombudsman for failing to pay an outstanding award of £300.
TPO received a complaint from tenants relating to repairs and maintenance of their rental property, the provision of documentation, the end of tenancy procedures, provision of the landlord’s details and complaints handling.
Ombudsman Rebecca Marsh was not satisfied that Saville Park Ltd had met its obligations under paragraph 14b of the 2016 Lettings Code as she could not determine what actions the agent had taken when the tenants reported issues or that the agent had kept them updated.
The Ombudsman was also unable to determine that the agent had provided statutory documentation prior to the start of the tenancy, was critical that the agent had not clarified the end of tenancy procedures as required and had not responded to the tenants’ complaint.
Saville Park Ltd was also criticised for not responding to a formal request for the landlord’s details which it should have done by law, and did not explain that the tenants were not entitled to this once the tenancy had ended.
The Ombudsman considered that the issues raised had caused the tenants some avoidable aggravation and the complaint was supported with an award of £300.
Saville Park Ltd failed to pay the award made and the Ombudsman referred them to the scheme’s independent Compliance Committee, which ruled that they should be excluded from The Property Ombudsman scheme.
The Property Ombudsman says she has been unable to determine whether Saville Park Ltd is still trading or whether it holds CMP membership. The agent does not appear to be using any property portals, such as Rightmove or Zoopla.
As part of TPO’s process, notification of this expulsion has been shared with all relevant bodies, including both Local and National Trading Standards.
This post has originally been featured in Letting Agent Today.