I used there services recently to find a tenant for my propety. I had a number of agents value the property. I compared all what the valuers had said and the one that stood out was another S from this agent who had many years experience within the industry and more clearly told me the benefits and disadvantages of renting properties. Although I am an experienced landlord I told all the agents this was my first investment to try and see how good there advice would be. From day one this other S did everything from taking photos, typing my particulars, attended all viewings and even putting up the \'TO LET\' board. I actually thought this other S, if it wasn\'t for the different way of spelling his name was the owner! Soon though when I was calling the branch and this S was out no-one in the Durham office seemed to know anything about renting houses, let alone when I asked about their management service. I thought clearly there is something wrong here. Why does it seem that one person, and not even S E himself, but this other S knows the in\'s and out\'s of lettings and no-one else there does! So I decided to look into this further. It turns out that this, I must say, genuinely good other S had come from working for Countrywide Plc and Reeds Rains the two largest agents in the uk and probably why he was well informed and presented. However I did find out by asking around that S E was known for being a bit of a shark and to watch out if he gets his hands on the deposit. After just one week and a couple of viewings they found a tenant. I thought great and well done to the other S for his hard work. Aware of what had been said to me about the deposit I thought I would let the process go through and see what would happen. this other S called me at every stage of the move-in process right up until after the statement of account came through. All was fine with the statement so i called the office to asked about the deposit and where it was. I was told by a lady called L that it was being held in their DPS account until the tenant moved out and refunded after 28 days. Mmmmmmm I thought thats not really correct. I waited until after the 14 days when they should have put the deposit into the DPS and then called again. I was told exactly the same but by A who turns out to be the son of S E. I then called the other S as I had his mobile and he sounded a little shocked but would try and sort this out. I told him that I had been given good advice from other people who warned me this would happen but would give him a chance to put this right as he had done a good job until then. After 2 further weeks it was put into the DPS and receipts received followed by a call from A E to explain the delay was due to the accountants. This gets interesting as I wanted to know what had gone on so asked some local solicitors and had a friend mystery shop their branch. Turns out that Stuart Edwards Estate Agents is a trading name of Bluepace Limited and the sole Director is A E. I also found out that their accountants in Gilesgate don\'t handle deposits for the company. My attention I thought should be drawn to who and how was the deposit taken by the firm. Turns out it was paid by the tenant into their business account then later having spoken to the DPS paid in from the firms same business account. Mmmmmm then I wondered why was there a delay by their accountants considering they never had the money and only A E seemed to control this. Long story to get shortened here in that the second months rent payment had been paid to the firm and yet I am to receive in. All the excuses under the sun for why there is a delay and where my money is but what I do think in this A E and his dad who seems to run the business but had no directorship is keeping it for themselves. I told the other S to get out of their , but it turns out he had given up a good career with Reeds Rains to go there and has four young children. I feel sorry for him and his family working for such truly unethical business and think it wnt be long before the Edwards greed closes them down! I hope it does. I already told the other S he can work for me any time if it goes pear-shaped. A genuine nice guy working for his kids but on behalf of a bunch of con men. In this agents window it clearly says they have 40 years experience within the Durham property market?! Mmmmm they mean misleading people and steeling there money. Apart from the other S who I could have believed this if he was older, i never once spoke to anyone else who i would say had more than a months experience of letting and managing properties. THEY ARE THE JOKE OF DURHAM CITY ESTATE AGENTS!!!!!!!!!!