“Awful company. Poor quality maintenance work - they use the ......”

Oct 27,2015
By: 'GM'
Oct 27,2015
12 people found
this helpful
Awful company. Poor quality maintenance work - they use the cheapest materials at hand and workmen who can't complete a job to satisfaction. During the last job the did for me the workman damaged my kitchen, which the company refused to repair - they're full of excuses and Daniel is the rudest person I've ever had the displeasure of dealing with. Avoid this agency if you have any desire for jobs to be done professionally or want a letting agency that treats people with respect.
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By: daniel coleman
Oct 30, 2015
Again this tenant has decided to post another bad review on a site. Again we will reply to the vindictive and petty nature of this tenant to explain what was so tragic it has scarred his being. On another site GM bemoaned that he had to threaten legal action to get work done, this was a lie and I notice he hasnt put this in his latest complaint. He also hasnt put that he cannot wait for his contract that he is stuck in to end, we spoke to the landlord and offered him the chance to leave at his leisure, unsurprisingly he declined. If GM believes me to be the rudest person he has ever dealt with then he has lived a very sheltered life, I have a high tolerance for imbeciles so I have been nothing but polite, slightly irked by his ridiculousness but never rude. Just so Mr McCarty is aware, we do not own the property he lives in, the works we instruct contractors to carry out are at the request of the landlords. If a landlord wishes to put in granite worktops and gold tops we are happy to arrange as long as they authorise cost, This review is all due to a hairline crack in a kitchen tile after the tenant made a song and dance about having the worktop changed due to slight warping from a faulty tap. The worktop did not need replacing but the landlords are more than reasonable and agreed to have it done. The worktop was from Ikea and was replaced like for like but involved removing most of the kitchen cabinets etc to get it out. Two tiles were cracked during this process, one was easy to replace so the contractor did, the other however was not so easy and would mean that other tiles would need removing and repair works to the wall behind which were an issue unconnected to the work going on. The contractor was happy to do the work but it was chargeable as they are not there to carry out additional works outside of their remit. The landlord was made aware and decided that the tile posed no issue to the quiet enjoyment of the property or the health and safety of the tenant so didnt wish to have the extra expense and hassle. The tenant couldnt grasp this and below are the emails that followed. As GM states above that NO he would not use this agent again, I can assure you would we rent to this tenant again, NOT A CHANCE. Its quite a long read through the correspondence but I think its quite amusing and shows the type of people we sometimes have to deal with. Please do start from the bottom and work your way up. Despite GM demanding the landlord stop using us we still manage the property in the correct and proper manner as we are required to do so by the Housing Act, ARLA and property ombudsman regulations.

Sent: 05 June 2015 12:25

Sent: 05 June 2015 12:11
Noted. You will be hearing from me formally.

Date: Friday, 5 June 2015 12:04
I have read you emails, I quote below

I have spoken today with my solicitor to confirm my rights and your obligations, and he confirmed that as your contractor caused damage you are fully liable for rectification, just as you would be for any other damage to anyone's property – the fact that the work is minor is irrelevant – you caused damage and so must correct it. I have been assured that should you wish to not correct the damage yourselves I would be well within my rights to have the work done independently and charge you the full amount by either offsetting against the rent or issuing action in the small claims court"

Your rights and obligations you refer to are covered under the provisions of the Housing Act so you are very much involving property law. If you can show me under what legal provisions you can withhold rent under the Sale of Goods & Services Act then please do?

I have already explained to you why the damage was caused. The contractor did indeed conduct their work with skill and reasonable care however there was collateral damage caused that could not be foreseen and therefore would not be covered under the remit of the initial work. It was unfortunate that the tile slightly cracked but it was not because the contractor was negligent or unskilled. The subsequent damage has been made safe so that no one cuts their hands or wrist on the offending tile so the matter has been resolved to a satisfactory condition, maybe not to you but within the eyes of the legal obligation of the landlord.

I have explained why it is not a simple process of replacing one tile, I have also advised that the landlord has been made aware of the additional work that is required in order to replace this one slightly cracked tile. They do not currently wish to undertake the costs for the work as it is not deemed necessary and the existing cracked tile has no impact on your quiet enjoyment of the property. It is unreasonable for you to expect the works to be carried out for a minor defect that has no bearing on your tenancy.

No one has questioned your care and attention to the property and the landlords have consistently agreed to instruct repairs despite not having obligation for some of them.

We are under no obligation to provide you with any further details and you are correct that I will have nothing further positive to say to you on the matter. Whilst I think that it is absolutely ridiculous that you would look to take a legal action for a slightly cracked tile that is now your prerogative and we shall obviously deal with any correspondence that we receive. Please be aware though that any costs incurred in dealing with this matter can be recoverable from you under the terms of the tenancy agreement so please do consider that before embarking on a frivolous action.

Sent: 05 June 2015 10:25

If you care to read the emails again I never mentioned property law, and as I'm sure you know, since you appear to be an expert in legal matters; the SoGaSA legislation does not require that a service is paid for – it covers all services provisioned irrespective of the ownership of the underlying item or the activity of ‘paying', and has specific provisions for tradesmen such as builders to conduct work …with reasonable care and skill" which was not the case in the replacement of the worktop. The fact that I have to resort to legal recourse to get your organisation to conduct itself reasonably should show you just how ridiculous you are being – any normal and well run business would see that it's good and moral practice to subscribe to the ‘if you break it – you fix it' concept. The fact is that your contractor, due to a mixture of sloppy working practices and a relatively shoddy piece of work done 3 years ago in the reconstruction of the kitchen, has broken something – the fact that it's a small item is irrelevant – he broke it, and so should fix it. How would you like it if a workman came to your house and broke something in the course of his work and refused to repair it? This entire conversation is somewhat idiotic and is representative of your business practices to be honest. The contractor was supplied through Holland Properties as an agent and so I have formally requested contact details for the provided agent so that I can issue appropriate requests to him for recourse – he was never provided as ‘an independent contractor' - he was and always has been provided as a member of your team and so I never had any reason to request his details. If you refused to provide me with his details I will have no other option but to issue the request to yourself as the contact party and should you then with to include the third party in the action you clearly have the legal right to do so.

We have, over the last 2 years made a large number of improvements to the property and the house is in exceptional condition – mostly due to our hard work, a fact commented on during the recent inspection when your team mentioned that this is the 'best maintained house on your books'. We have been exemplary tenants and have increased the value of this property substantially whilst requiring little of your organisation other than to professionally deal with the few items of maintenance we couldn't take care of ourselves and on every occasion we have had to battle with Holland Properties to get anything done, and when it is done I'm faced with no-shows, spontaneous attendance, shoddy work and excuses, and as a tenant I'm informing you that it's not good enough.

This issue has nothing to do with the Council – this has to do with your inability to provide sufficient services or abide by legislation enacted specifically to cover inadequately provisioned goods and services or services provisioned without sufficient care or skill, and I think speaks to the business practices we have seen over the last few years. Trying to sidestep your obligations by hiding behind the Housing Act is a cowardly way to avoid your responsibilities as a service provider.

I don't expect to hear anything positive from you, and so I formally give notice that you have 28 days from today in which to either arrange to rectify the work in the kitchen or provide me with the contact details for your agent, after which time I will issue formal proceedings.

Date: Friday, 5 June 2015 09:45
As an owner and director of Holland Properties I can assure you that you are speaking to the best person to deal with your concern. The fact you are talking to me means that the matter is being taken very seriously.

This matter has everything to do with property law. You are a tenant in the property and yours and the landlords rights and obligations are therefore governed by the Housing Act and property law. If you would kindly read through your tenancy agreement it is all clearly stated in there and I would be happy to go over it with you to point out why you are wrong.

Despite trying to use property law in your earlier email to state you are within your rights to withhold rent I can see that you may well have looked further into this or spoken again with your solicitor" as you are now quoting the Supply of Goods & Services Act. Obviously if the service was provided to you then you must have instructed and paid for it so you would already have all the relevant details in order to recover your monies paid to cover the cost of reinstatement?

Again I reiterate, the service was not provided to you, the property damaged was not yours, you have not been asked to pay for any costs relating to it. The landlord has acted under their rights and obligations under the terms of the tenancy agreement.

I do not deny that my tone in my emails has been curt, and whilst it is a reciprocation of your tone I also find it rather irksome when people start threatening solicitors and quoting their rights when they actually do not know full facts or what their rights or the rights and obligations of a landlord are. As advised the best recourse for you here would be to contact Tower Hamlets Housing officers and report the issue as a tenant that is having his rights breached. If they visit and subsequently advise me that the works are deemed necessary to carry out then I will gladly speak with your landlords and arrange this.

Sent: 04 June 2015 19:47

This has nothing to do with property law – you (or in the case that, as you say, you are all independent companies; the contractor himself) are liable under the Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982. The service was provided to me, and not to the landlord, and as such I have a cause of action against the contractor to remedy the damage. If you would provide me with this details I would be more than happy to issue the appropriate paperwork against him, and if necessary issue the small claims court action if he does not wish to correct his mistake.

The tone of your email is extremely curt, dismissive and rather unprofessional – I guess I should expect it after the way the relationship has deteriorated over the last 12 months (starting well before the renewal negotiation) and I am not at all happy with the way this situation has been handled. As per my original request; I would appreciate it if a senior member of the Holland Properties team could contact me as I would like to talk with someone who can take the matter seriously.

Date: Thursday, 4 June 2015 19:34

As mentioned in my earlier email, I shall speak with the contractor with regards why he couldn't attend yesterday. Please be aware these are no employees of Holland Properties but independent companies so we have no immediate jurisdiction over how they plan their days. I apologise if there was an inconvenience and your parents were more than welcome to turn him away at the door as you have done before, as they did not the 3 inches of missing mastic that was causing such a concern was replaced.

Please be advised that the property is not your property that was damaged, your solicitor should have advised you of that. Should the owner wish to take umbrage with the damage then they would be entitled to take further action against Holland Properties or the contractors that were instructed. I would suggest that you contact the councils environmental health department to look at the issue and should the damage" pose a serious risk to your health then we shall obviously rectify the matter. For you solicitor to suggest you can carry such frivolous works out at will and deduct from the rent is unprofessional and mis-leading. If they would like me to explain to them why then I would be happy to do so but from what you say I would garner that they are not particularly familiar with property law.

The issue that I see here is that since the rent increase was requested, which you were most unhappy about, your nose has been put out of joint and you seem to expect that you should be living in a brand new property and therefore any little item you see should be dealt with immediately in order for you to get your monies worth. Unfortunately this is not how a tenant landlord relationship works and it is up to the owner to authorise such repairs at their discretion especially of they be deemed unnecessary in the general course of the tenancy.

Please also be aware that you did not actually copy in the landlord but his partner, and I can assure you that they are fully aware of the situation at the house relating to your concerns.

Please note that we do not have a business relationship, you have a tenancy agreement with the owner of the property, the fact you transfer rent though Holland Properties does not in turn make us business associates. All your concerns have been addressed and your landlords have been more than generous in accommodating your requests including a fence that cost over £2000 and they were under no obligation to agree to.

Whilst you may believe that we are squeezing you for every penny, I would suggest that you investigate what current rents are as you will discover that you are paying below market value. The maintenance you are fighting for are mainly items that a general wear and tear that you expect to be remedied, this includes some shrinkage cracks the paint work which again are aesthetic and are unlikely to be painted during the term of your tenancy unless of course your landlord wishes to pay for the works, which at present they don't.

From Holland Properties perspective the matter has been resolved to an acceptable level, the 3 inch crack in the tile poses no risk to you or the property and it has been noted that this was not your responsibility to repair so that at the end of your tenancy you will not be charged. The owner has also been spoken with and he is happy at the resolution and currently sees no reason for further repair works to be carried out, if their perspective changes then I will of course discuss that with them.

Sent: 04 June 2015 19:06
The contractor did indeed visit today, again; a day late and without an appointment, which is not unsurprising considering your record of missing appointments and turning up unannounced, but annoying nonetheless. At some point I would like to talk with you about this area as it is becoming more and more difficult to accommodate sloppy timekeeping.

The answer regarding the tile is not acceptable. I wouldn't expect the landlord to pay for the work (and I have copied them to this mail to ensure they understand the situation) – this was entirely the fault of Holland Properties as it was the negligent work of your contractor and so should be rectified by Holland Properties – this is not maintenance work on the house which should be charged back to the owner.

I have spoken today with my solicitor to confirm my rights and your obligations, and he confirmed that as your contractor caused damage you are fully liable for rectification, just as you would be for any other damage to anyone's property – the fact that the work is minor is irrelevant – you caused damage and so must correct it. I have been assured that should you wish to not correct the damage yourselves I would be well within my rights to have the work done independently and charge you the full amount by either offsetting against the rent or issuing action in the small claims court – I'm sure neither of us wants to start that process as it will undoubtedly end up costing more than having your contractor simply putting right the mistake he made.

It is unfortunate that over the last year such a promising business relationship seems to be souring – I get the distinct impression that Holland Properties is only interested in squeezing every last penny out of this rental arrangement and the customer service and care we were promised originally seems to be evaporating rapidly. The negotiation over the renewal and subsequent rental increase I found aggressive and pushy, and I have to fight for every bit of maintenance – this particular item I find especially troubling since it isn't actually maintenance, but a correction of damage your team caused. I also pointed out during the inspection a problem with the tap recently fitted and extensive cracks developing all over the house – neither of these have been addressed either.

I will be available tomorrow if you wish to discuss the matter further, and I look forward to an acceptable resolution of the situation with the damage in the kitchen in particular.


Date: Thursday, 4 June 2015 17:30
Dear Glen

Dee has passed me across your messages, I did try to call your mobile earlier but there was no answer.

I had spoken with the contractor yesterday with regards to various jobs and he had said he would be attending both XXX and XXX. I hadn't heard from any parties so it was assumed he had visited as discussed. I havent spoken to him today but obviously you have confirmed that he has arrived today and I shall speak to him tomorrow when he comes to collect keys for other jobs.

As you know there was a lot of work required in order to replace the worktop including removal of cupboards and appliances. Unfortunately when worktops etc are removed there can be collateral damage to surrounding tiles as they are fragile items. Such damage is not covered by contractors under the repairs as circumstances mean that the damage is accidental and also not foreseeable or preventable. If additional damage is caused then we will always advise the owners and if the work has to be done then we look to agree that with them, in cases where the damage is more aesthetic and not detrimental to the property then the decision lies with the landlord as to whether they want to pay for the additional repairs or just have it noted on the inventory.

Due to the position of the tile and the condition of the wall behind there is a lot more work required than just removing 1 tile as the wall behind is hollow and will require work along with the likelihood that further tiles will break during the works. I have spoken with your landlord and they do not feel that for such a minor issue, they do not want to cover the extra expense at this time.

Obviously Dee has confirmed that the damage has been noted and will be excepted at the time of check out.

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Holland Properties Ltd

429 Westferry Road London
Greater London
E14 3AN


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