The Daily Mail says it has informed Trading Standards of a lettings agent which is claims is “illegally working” despite not being a member of a redress scheme.
And the publication has run an extensive article on the agent’s seemingly-flamboyant lifestyle while his Oldham-based company is phasing the payment of money owed to a landlord.
“David Walters, 39, was ordered by a judge to pay more than £20,000 to homeowner Amy Trumpeter after pocketing her rent and leaving her house in Oldham with furniture missing and its roof fallen in after failing to carry out repairs” says the Mail Online article.
It says that Walters – “who lives in a £449,000 four-bedroom house in a sought-after Pennines village” – is repaying Trumpeter just £100 a month, which means the money owed would take over 15 years to be fully repaid.
The Mail Online goes on to say that since the court case which agreed the staggered payments – apparently because of the agency’s inability to pay the full amount owed – Walters has shared social media images of his trips to Marbella, Cancun and Zante.
The Mail says: “Ms Trumpeter first hired Mr Walters and his company Lettings4All in 2015 to look after her three-bedroom house in Oldham while she moved to Oxford for work. In addition to finding tenants he also agreed to carry out a series of repairs.
“’We agreed a list of work that needed doing – things like decorating, new carpets, general maintenance and repairs’ she said.
“‘I agreed to that and he sent me some photos of works being carried and said ‘’don’t worry, I’ve got a tenant in already”.
“‘I thought it was strange that he had managed to turn it around in just two weeks but otherwise felt happy.’
“Ms Trumpeter’s suspicions grew when Mr Walters failed to send rent payments, claiming that he needed the money to pay for additional work.
“After several months she was then contacted by the tenant on Facebook, who was complaining about the poor state of the property.”
After substantial discussions and time elapsed, the landlord reported Walters to the Property Redress Scheme, which found that he had to pay back £5,575 in rent and a further £6,425 for repairs he had been paid for but not carried out plus extra compensation.
However he failed to pay this amount and was expelled by the PRS.
Walters had been contacted by the Mail for comment but had not responded at the time of the article’s publication.
Letting Agent Today has attempted to contact Walters but the agency’s website and Facebook page appear disabled.
You can see the Mail’s article in full here.
This post has originally been featured in Letting Agent Today.