Over the last few days I’ve been openly bitching about a letting agent I’ve been dealing with. Here are the posts for a recap:
I Just Encountered A Rude Cock-Face Letting Agent
Letting Agent Is Trying To Rip Me Off
While I’ve already mentioned a few reasons why they did an extremely poor job, I never actually mentioned all the details. To close this chapter, here’s a list of practises the agent utilised which were either illegal or what I considered to be extremely inappropriate:
Energy performance certificate wasn’t shown to perspective tenants
They marketed the property and took viewings without an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). As the law stands, the certificate should be provided when (or before) any written information about the property is provided to prospective tenants or during tenant viewings I didn’t even provide my agent with my EPC- so what did they show the tenants? Probably nothing.
Invalid Gas Safety Certificate
The agent asked for a Gas Safety Certificate before they took viewings. So I provided them with one, which they photocopied and kept for record.
Funny thing is, when I got home later that day, I filed away the certificate. At that point I realised I gave them a copy of a certificate which was for a completely different property they were marketing. Obviously they didn’t even check the certificate!!! I know, I’m a dumbass for accidently giving them the wrong certificate, but they should have checked to confirm validity, that’s for sure!!
They bitched about competition
The agent I was dealing with was actually a reasonable guy, but he constantly bitched about other local agents. He kept making a point of saying that the other agents provided a “monkey service”.
If he thinks his services are better than the rival, that’s cool. But I found it rather off-putting listening to him bitch about shit I didn’t really give a damn about. I just thought it was a really bad tactic to bitch about other local competitors (because it is a tactic, make no mistakes). In my opinion, it showed bad sportsmanship and insecurity. He didn’t need to bitch about them, he already had my attention, and I already told him to find me tenants.
They got me a tenant which didn’t match my requirements
As explained in a previous blog post, when the agent came to view the property, before marketing it, he asked me a bunch of questions, like:
- Will you accept tenants with children?
- Will you allow pets?
- Will you allow DSS tenants?
- Will you accept smokers?
I said “no” to all those questions besides from allowing children. I also mentioned that I only want working professionals, and I don’t want anyone too young.
They ended up finding me a 25yr old single mother, that’s a part-time fitness instructor that’s on social benefits.
The two agents I dealt with from the company had repelling traits. The primary agent I was dealing with had a strong ‘wheel and dealer’ vibe. It was friendly banter for the most part, but his banter didn’t actually work on me, and it started to get annoying after 5mins. Every time he said lines like, “I know you’re not a mug, so I wouldn’t set you up with a muppet tenant”, I just cringed and wanted to say, “Please, stop feeding me these lines, just get on with your job”. His continuous need to slag off the competition also added to the bad attitude syndrome.
On a couple of occasions, I spoke to another agent, a colleague of the primary agent I was dealing with. When he found out I may not use their services (because I was working on other ways to get tenants), he got a major attitude problem. He was being aggressive and pushy, but at the same time, trying to persuade me to use their services. It was so weird. He didn’t realise that being aggressive and rude wasn’t going to aid in changing my mind. Go figure. What a complete waster.
If I had a service to offer, and was faced with an individual which didn’t want to use my services, I wouldn’t release a bad attitude. I would respect their decision and at least give them a good farewell impression so they consider my services next time. That brain-dead monkey basically insured that I never EVER consider using them again!!!
Couldn’t admit defeat
Amongst the grovelling and despair from the agent, I was adamant to make them understand why I wasn’t using their service, because they didn’t seem to get it. So I tried making it real simple for them:
If you were in my position, what would you do? You have two sets of tenants- one is a single mother with good rental history, but is on social benefits and a part-time job. The other is a family of 3. Both parents work, and the main breadwinner is a doctor and has good references.
I’d go with the mother, because I can clarify she has GREAT references, and has been renting without problems for the last 4 years. We did credit checks on her, and she ticks all the boxes. Plus, you’ll find that tenants like doctors are more clued up about tenancy rights, so they’re more likely to cause more problems.
*LANDLORD SLAPS FOREHEAD*
So, I should take the single mother because she’s likely to be more ignorant? Fortunately, I’m a good landlord, so if there are any problems, I’d like to fix them, and not rely on my tenants to just be ignorant about their rights.
The agent’s argument was ridiculous. No way would he pick the single mother over a working professional, even if he couldn’t admit it. His efforts of holding onto my business weren’t even admirable, they were cringe worthy and weak.
Overly confident about their service
Throughout the whole dealing, the agent was constantly bragging about how good their services were. I wouldn’t have minded if that’s what the case was. However, my list above certainly disagrees. I have no qualms with confidence, but at least come through with the goods, innit.
Disclaimer: I'm just a simple landlord blogger; I'm not qualified to give legal or financial advice. Any information I share is my opinion based on my personal experiences as an active landlord, and should never be construed as legal or professional advice. For more information, please read my full disclaimer.