Brookdale Property Management may be the biggest letting agent in Peterborough but they are certainly not the best. They call themselves fussy over whom they choose as tenants; replace fussy with judgemental and you find a much better description of their treatment of potential tenants.
We viewed a property and decided immediately to take it as it accepted pets and many rentals do not allow a dog. We were taken to the office where we filled out an application form. We just thought it would be a standard application form until we got to the page where we have to list all our debts and outgoings. I then had to sit for half an hour with the agent to explain almost every transaction on my bank statement. They actually asked for a copy of my Disability Living Allowance letter (and bear in mind this lists my disability and all my care needs). I came away feeling ashamed and violated; I felt like some kind of criminal and this was in no way helped by the agent whose people-skills left a lot to be desired. One does not expect the Spanish Inquisition especially when filling in an application form. Obviously being personally and financially invasive is part of their ¢â‚¬Ëœunique tenant referencing system' ¢â‚¬â€œ this is not the professional service their website advertises.
Brookdale then took my holding deposit which is supposed to take the property off the market. They then said that they would get back to us when the credit and referencing checks had been done. My husband phoned them a couple of days later and they said we had passed all the checks but they needed to check a few things with the landlord.
I received a call about half an hour later telling me that our application had been declined. I asked for a specific reason when we had passed all the checks and I was told that the landlord was uncertain about the dog. I said that when we agreed to view the property it was agreed that a pet would be allowed and that we would not have made a 200 mile round trip on the off-chance the property would accept a pet. I continued to press and was then told: ¢â‚¬ËœI was just trying to be polite ¢â‚¬â€œ we did not like the state of your finances and were concerned the rent would be too much of a squeeze'. Please bear in mind that the rent for this property is £100 cheaper than we are paying now.
I was quite upset by my treatment from this company but was even more annoyed that the property we were applying for was then immediately taken off the market and one would assume it had been let. This means that Brookdale were showing potential tenants around a property for which we had paid a holding deposit. Whilst this is not illegal it is morally and ethically suspect. Please bear in mind that I only received my refund today.
Quality management might only begin with a quality tenant ¢â‚¬â€œ just a shame that Brookdale is not a quality letting agent.