Don't ever use!!! Bad experience from start to finish. Staff were absolutely disorganised and generally useless.
Pre-arranged to view a property, was kept waiting for nearly half an hour before an agent was able to show us it.
Ok so that's not the end of the world.
We liked the property and put down a holding deposit (no paperwork supplied with this) - again I could probably forgive this, but having now dealt with a much more professional agent, it is a clear indication that these guys have little idea what they are doing.
This went to the landlord for consideration, on more than one occasion I was promised an update on the decision that I never received, and had to chase them. Annoying and unprofessional on their part.
Despite previously making it very clear that we had absolutely maxed out our budget with this offer, the agent pressured us in to raising it, and got us involved in bartering against supposed other offers. Embarrassing and unprofessional.
Eventually the offer was rejected by the landlord, which is obviously not the agents fault, but this was where our problems started.
The agents proved almost impossible to get hold of for the next few days whilst I made enquiries about the return of my (significant) holding deposit. In the meantime we made another offer with a different agent, which was accepted.
Due to the payments now due for that property, I urgently contacted AM to check that the deposit had been refunded. I was assured that it was being processed and would be with me in 3 working days.
When it failed to appear, I was unable to reach the agent I had dealt with, and spoke to another member of staff who assured me that the process was underway and it should be with me by the end of the day.
It was not. I then rang and left a long message with a different team member, who assured me his manager would be in touch the next day to urgently clarify the situation.
The manager never got in touch.
Over the following week, I made about a dozen phonecalls, several emails, and threatened to report them to the lettings ombudsman.
Eventually I was told that due to an internal email error, the request had not yet been processed and had now been actioned, over a week after it should have been.
I explained that I now urgently needed the money to pay a further deposit, and was told that they could not refund it any faster (basically they were not willing to pay for an instant transfer - at the time they fobbed me off with a rationale about money laundering, but I have since spoken to a very good friend who is a corporate lawyer and thoroughly familiar with the laws on money laundering, who has told me that their reasoning was a load of rubbish).
Whilst they were always polite, and pleasant enough, I don't feel that I have ever met such an unprofessional setup.
As I fairly pointed out, if I was a tenant who had paid their rent over 2 weeks late, I doubt they would be willing to let me just say "oops it was an internal email error, sorry about that - not much we can really do about it"...
Its a shame, because I don't think that they're crooks, and they're pleasant enough, more so than some of the other very pushy agents (partic Foxtons) that I met. But honest to god, I have never been so frustrated with a service in my life. The increasing urgency with which I needed to pay the new deposit, did not help matters for me, but it was clear that they were not going to pull their finger out and try to correct their mistake with any sense of urgency.
And to Dan - I noticed your keenness for responding to customers with negative experiences on this site. I would absolute love to hear from you, given that I sent you several emails and voicemails over the two weeks, of which you failed to respond to any. Perhaps once it was clear that you owed me money, and that I would never be a potential client/cash cow, you lost interest?
Oh and to add insult to injury, I continued to get flashy "personalised" emails from the same agent I had dealt with, after this had all happened - another clear indicator to me that they had paid minimal attention to my situation and obviously had no idea who I was.
Don't ever use them.
On a side note, I am also interested in the big divide between the positive/negative reviews on the site, and the interesting similarity between many of the positive reviews. Although I highly doubt that they have the organisational skills to rig a series of reviews on websites - they wouldn't be the first company to do so.