I had to move to Darwen from Plymouth because of work. As I had to do rental property via internet and phone I decided to use what I thought to be a reputable national company even though their administratio fee\'s were way above other local agents in order to receive a professional service - how wrong was I? I needed to move week beginning 14th January as the new job began 21st. All, according to the first staff member I dealt with was sorted by the second week in December upon paying £200 holding fee. Credit checks, references etc all alledgedly received and OK\'d by property owner. I was told the current tenant was moving out 3rd January so the agency had ample time to clean and make good and repairs etc before our arrival. The deposit and months rent was paid via card over the phone on 11th January and all was good -or so we thought! Sat in Plymouth surrounded by boxes awaiting Darwen removal firm to arrive I receive an email from the landlord to the agency which I was copied into stating as she hadn\'t been notified until 10th of us as new tenants or any documentation about us she wasn\'t going to sign to contract! It was along trip up the motorway with copies of emails back and forth, no keys available for us to collect, no cleaning or repairs done. We arrived at 6pm eventually getting keys to a filthy hovel with dangerous repairs needing doing such as switches and light fittings hanging from walls and ceilings. We even had dog/cat poop on the carpets! It took a cleaning crew 3days to clean, especially the oven and 2 weeks on with daily phone calls to both Blackburn and Manchester offices - all of which were promised to call back and never have, I\'m still waiting for a locksmith to fit a new backdoor lock which the previous tenant apparently changed and didn\'t give the keys in. My pointing out this is a serious fire hazard in a 3 storey building along with knowing someone out there has key access to my home has failed to get a result. I am trying to instigate a formal complaint but trying to get that information out of them is proving worse than trying to get keys!
What agent could do to change your mind?
They could have cleaned and repaired before our arrival and sorted out the dispute with the landlord regarding who pays for what afterwards.
They could have not lied about the landlady being aware of us back in December and leading us to believe all was sorted when it clearly wasn\'t.
They could replace the lock so we have access to the back for fire safety reasons at least, not to mention security considering how awful the previous tenant left the property.
They could have the courtesy to return as promised daily phone calls.
They could have far better customer service training. The attitude of some staff when talking to both myself on the phone and face to face with my elderly father who was messed about and treated terribly when trying to collect keys for us is appalling. There is no excuse for bad manners - ever!