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Advice needed regarding unreliable estate agent

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kiwidave
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Advice needed regarding unreliable estate agent

Postby kiwidave » Sun, 17 Aug 2014 10:54 am

Hi

I'm moving home to New Zealand in a few weeks and I've just run into some issues with my agent. On 16 July I have my agent the required 2 months notice to enable the diplomatic clause on my apartment lease - this means I will have to pay rent until approx. 16 September. I have just found out this weekend that my agent didn't inform the landlord or his agent until 30 July and therefore I have to pay an extra 2 weeks rent.

I chased my agent several times after 16 July to confirm all the details - he confirmed on 21 July that he was meeting with the landlord's agent that day and then on 23 July he confirmed all the dates were agreed. After speaking to the landlord's agent this morning those meetings never took place and she wasn't made aware of my notice until 30 July. I trust the landlord's agent and believe this to be true.

Has anyone else had something like this happen before? If I make an official complaint to the CEA am I likely to get anything out of it, or will I be more successful by making some kind of claim via court action?

Any advice is appreciated!

Cheers
David

PNGMK
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Postby PNGMK » Sun, 17 Aug 2014 4:16 pm

Was the notice in writing? IF so your complaint will be upheld and you should forward copies to the various parties. IF not....

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Mi Amigo
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Re: Advice needed regarding unreliable estate agent

Postby Mi Amigo » Sun, 17 Aug 2014 7:44 pm

^^^ What PNGMK said, plus I would add:

kiwidave wrote:I trust the landlord's agent and believe this to be true.

Obviously I don't know the person you are talking about, but I can tell you that we thought we could trust our landlord's agent until we exercised our diplomatic clause; at which point we were stitched up. So I would advise some caution on that front also - one cannot always take agents at face value unfortunately; they will generally do anything to maximise their income.
Be careful what you wish for

kiwidave
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Postby kiwidave » Sun, 17 Aug 2014 10:20 pm

Thanks for the replies so far. My notice was given in writing and so was the proof from my employer that I was leaving the country.

My agent has finally started responding to messages again (because I threatened to report him to the CEA) - he said the delay in notifying the landlord and his agent was because he was called up to the reservists. This is despite him telling me that everyone was aware of the dates I'm moving out (it looks like that was never the case).

It just looks like he's got lazy, told me everything was OK and before he could actually sort everything out with the landlord he got called up for service. Either way, I don't see why I should have to pay the two extra weeks rent for his incompetence. The only person that appears to be "winning" out of this is the landlord who gets an extra two weeks rent. I sympathise a bit with my landlord as well - he didn't receive notice for two weeks after I actually gave it, so in theory he shouldn't lose out either. I can't see what my agent is getting out of it, so I can only put it down to him being unreliable (so I'll keep on pushing him to reimburse me the two weeks rent).

kiwidave
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Postby kiwidave » Sun, 21 Sep 2014 1:47 pm

An update for the benefit of anyone else who finds them in my situation!

After chasing my agent for several weeks (even after I left Singapore) I've managed to get paid for the additional 2 weeks rent that I lost. The agent tried everything to get out of it (including hassling my landlord) but I wouldn't let him out of it.

Lesson learnt is to be persistent. Unfortunately the only way I could get the agent to respond to my messages was the mention of reporting him to the CEA and management at his own agency.

Glad everything has turned out OK, it just took several weeks and loads of messages to get there!

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sundaymorningstaple
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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Sun, 21 Sep 2014 2:23 pm

Thank you for pushing their buttons. More people need to know that if they start pushing the right buttons, things will happen. Unfortunately, agents know that most expats won't pursue after they have left the country so do their damnedest to screw the tenants if they can. Especially when there is a dip clause involved. As you were smart in giving notice in writing and also envoking the CEA. It was like a cattle prod. Get's them moving. Good on ya! \:D/


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