Southampton, SO19
1/5, 5 reviews
0% recommended
50% lettings valuation accuracy
0% lettings fee satisfaction



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“Blundells, a trading arm of Countrywide Residential Lettings Ltd provided ......”

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Sep 01,2014
Minithumbdown
By: 'Diane'
Sep 01,2014
0 people found
this helpful
Blundells, a trading arm of Countrywide Residential Lettings Ltd provided a ¢â‚¬Ëœfully managed property service' for us over the last 3 years, charging 10% of the rental for their services. We were led to believe that they would ensure our property (previously our home) was being well looked after by the tenants while we were out of the country, or at least advise us otherwise.

The property was always (according to Blundells/Countrywide) ¢â‚¬Ëœwell maintained and looked after', but 3 years and 2 tenants later, we have had hundreds of pound's worth of belongings stolen, and thousands of pounds worth of damage caused to the property. Not knowing the true extent of the damage towards the end of the last tenancy, we asked my brother to organise some ¢â‚¬Ëœfreshening up' decorating. The subsequent film he took of how the last tenants were living, was shocking. Curtains were closed, a window blacked out, it was filthy, and the mould-spread in this, a modern property, was remarkable.

The first tenants stole a wardrobe, bedside cabinets, bar stools, rugs and televisions. Blundells accepted the tenant's excuse that they gave them to charity, because the' Landlords told them they could'. We ¢â‚¬Ëœwon' second hand value from their tenant bond, but it was nothing compared to the true cost of replacement.

With the second tenants we had over £500 costs to clean our semi- detached property to make it fit to live in. The toilets were irretrievably blackened by limescale build up, the carpets were irretrievably stained, 11 lightbulbs had blown, wooden worktops ruined, lots of breakages

Mould assessment and remediation costs alone were over £1600. The mould extended to every upstairs UPVC window and cill, affecting curtain linings and decorations

Every report Blundells/Countrywide did (most of which we had to insist upon) reported the house as ¢â‚¬Ëœwell maintained and cared for' ¢â‚¬â€œ just once it was reported by our property manager Kirstie Green as ¢â‚¬Ëœa little untidy in places'. I dread to think what standards of cleanliness this property manager lives in.

Our neighbours now also report that an additional person that we did not know about resided at the property for the 2 year tenancy. Whether this was an ¢â‚¬Ëœofficial' sub-let or not, we do not know, but extra keys were cut in contravention to our contract.

Being concerned as we were with this company, we felt we had to become more ¢â‚¬Ëœactive Landlord's', even from overseas. We checked up on them as much as we could, demanded action on the one issue we knew about (at that time the mould was limited to the en-suite) and even contacted the tenants personally because we didn't trust Blundells/Countrywide. Our property managers Kirstie Green and Tristan Hickey did not seem to appreciate our interventions and played an extremely obstructive game thereafter. Unfortunately all their behaviour and shortfalls were supported by Peter Lee, their Regional Director, and so there is little incentive for the staff to be anything but confident with the appalling service they offer.

When we approached the tenant to at least get some of the money back through the tenant bond, Kirstie Green caused mischief by e-mailing the tenant, advising him to go to dispute, rather than supporting us, her clients and explaining to the tenants the serious damage they had done to the property. Then Blundells/Countrywide sent a sub-standard claim to the tenant bond scheme without our knowledge and against our wishes. Fortunately MyDeposits agreed to accept a further 15 pieces of evidence from us, and as a result we managed to secure all the tenant's bond.

The Ombudsman awarded us £75 for ¢â‚¬Ëœaggravation' which was derisory, but at least this award acknowledged the unprofessionalism of those property management staff concerned.

However we were not successful in our claim against Blundells/Countrywide for failing to manage our property. The Ombudsman's report only says that he has not found against Blundells/Countrywide for the damage because they followed ¢â‚¬ËœThe TPO Code of Practice'. As we understand it Blundells/Countrywide only need to manage issues raised by the tenant, or the Landlord. Everything else (unless it's likely to kill someone) can be ignored. If the Landlord is out of the country like us, and the tenants are quietly but systematically neglecting and abusing the property, nothing has to be done. Then when the tenant leaves the property the Landlord (wrongly believing his property has been ¢â‚¬Ëœwell maintained and cared for') is in for a shock - left to fight for the tenant bond, and then, when the costs were as great as ours, through the small claims court. You really are at the mercy of your tenants, and how they choose to treat your property.

All we can say is that we employed Blundells/Countrywide to manage our property and give us peace of mind that our house was being looked after while we are out of the country. It's been anything but, hours spent chasing them up, trying to recover costs, second guessing their obstructions and mischief, making complaints about them. Both you and your property are in a very vulnerable position if you use this agent.

If you are already using Blundells/Countrywide and experiencing problems, please feel free to contact us on the address below and we can at least share some of the tricks of the trade that the Adept Works office in Sheffield have used.

e-mail: landlordprotectiongroup@gmail.com

Blundells are a trading arm of Countrywide Residential Lettings Ltd. so beware of either - same system, same processes, same appalling service!
What agent could do to change your mind?
Our property managers should have been managing our property in accordance with the tenancy agreement. They should have ensured that 'the property was kept clean and well aired at all times'. When it clearly wasn't they should have informed us and given us chance to end the tenancy. I know we all have personal standards on cleanliness, but Blundells/Countrywide's tolerance of filth and grime is breathtaking. Perhaps sending our property managers on a refresher course to be able to spot the difference between a well maintained, and a neglected property, may help them to provide a better service
Attached Filesnbsp;
Comment on agent fees
With the exception of rent collection we feel we paid ‚£69 a month for them to oversee theft, neglect and deterioration to our property over a 3 year period
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Opening Hours
Address

Countrywide Residential Lettings
38 Portsmouth RoadWoolston
Southampton
Hampshire
SO19 9AD
02380 445 899

Performance statistics
Services Valuation Accuracy Fees Satisfaction Min Price of property reviewed Max Price of property reviewed
Lettings 50% 0% £610 £1,400
Review statistics
From Landlords From Tenants From Vendors From Buyers Other
0 2 0 3 0 0 0 0 0 0
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  • Sales
  • Lettings
  • Block Management
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  • Conveyancing
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“Stay away from them!...”

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Mar 25,2019
Minithumbdown
By: 'Frank'
Mar 25,2019
4 people found
this helpful
Just a terrible service. You hope to be talking with sensible people instead they just try to charge you for anything without thinking twice. The hold your deposit for as much as they can and make you go through the pain of claiming it back. ...
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“I regret using them. They are completely incompetent. They have ......”

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Mar 04,2015
Minithumbdown
By: 'Wezza'
Mar 04,2015
3 people found
this helpful
I regret using them. They are completely incompetent. They have no idea about customer service. They did nothing right. Everything we ever asked them to do, they messed up and either just didn't do or even worse did the very opposite. They caused us so ...
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“I have received nothing other than appalling service from Countrywide ......”

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Sep 12,2014
Minithumbdown
By: 'DisgustedTenant'
Sep 12,2014
1 people found
this helpful
I have received nothing other than appalling service from Countrywide letting agents. Unfortunately I have never dealt with such a shoddy, disorganised and obnoxious company. I'm thrilled to have moved out of the frankly deplapodated property that I was renting from them. Despite this, I ...
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What agent could do to change your mind?
Change literally everything about your company. The manner in which I have been dealt with has been sickening. You treat people like dirt on the floor and it's disgusting. You are easily the rudest company I've ever dealt with.
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Comment on agent fees
Ridiculous. Absolutely Ridiculous.
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“Blundells, a trading arm of Countrywide Residential Lettings Ltd provided ......”

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Sep 01,2014
Minithumbdown
By: 'Diane'
Sep 01,2014
0 people found
this helpful
Blundells, a trading arm of Countrywide Residential Lettings Ltd provided a ¢â‚¬Ëœfully managed property service' for us over the last 3 years, charging 10% of the rental for their services. We were led to believe that they would ensure our property (previously our home) was being well ...
read full review
What agent could do to change your mind?
Our property managers should have been managing our property in accordance with the tenancy agreement. They should have ensured that 'the property was kept clean and well aired at all times'. When it clearly wasn't they should have informed us and given us chance to end the tenancy. I know we all have personal standards on cleanliness, but Blundells/Countrywide's tolerance of filth and grime is breathtaking. Perhaps sending our property managers on a refresher course to be able to spot the difference between a well maintained, and a neglected property, may help them to provide a better service
Attached Filesnbsp;
Comment on agent fees
With the exception of rent collection we feel we paid ‚£69 a month for them to oversee theft, neglect and deterioration to our property over a 3 year period
Was this helpful? Yes

“We are moving from our property and the management company ......”

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May 30,2012
Minithumbdown
By: 'Boobear'
May 30,2012
6 people found
this helpful
We are moving from our property and the management company instructed Morris Dibben to rent the property out. We left the keys to our rented property with Morris Dibben. After recent letter drop by the police, stating there were break in's in the area, we ...
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What agent could do to change your mind?
Agent was incompetent; I used to be an estate agent, worked in lettings and run my own estate and lettings agency. The service and attitude is one I have never encountered at any other estate agents or lettings, even other Countrywide offices. To improve the agent in question must, set up basic training, put basic procedures in place, oversee the first months training. To leave someone in this state and to respond with prove it, is wholly unprofessional, inadequate and no sense of customer service.
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Kindly note that legally, letting agents need to publish information about their tenancy fees, government-approved redress schemes and client money protection schemes on their website and on third party websites (on which agents are listed). For properties to lease/rent in England, agents need to keep this information up to date and precise on allAgents or specify within the property description.

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