Consumer Law Dilema - Brokers

Your friend has £60,000 to buy a boat, spent £4400 deposit,
on top of that another £1800 that he won't get back,
If he gets the full deposit back he will be £2600
in pocket,
The question is, How much does he want to spend
to get back the £2600, bearing in mind that what
ever he spends will end up being taken away from the
£2600
At this point it just might be better to take the loss
and walk away
Edit, Using the small claims court you get your court deposit back
if you win,
If you get someone to represent you, that may involve cost
Claimant can also add 8% statutory interest to the SCC claim.
 

theinventor

War Hero
To be blunt, your mate has dropped £4k on the boat agent with little due diligence, and another £750 on a lawyer without being clear what he expects in return. Best advice you can give him is burn his cheque book and cut up his cards before he loses any more.
 

MoleBath

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
A complaint to consumer protection at the local council is free, the broker may have previous form with them.
 

RRV8

GCM
Worth asking if he took legal expenses cover with his home insurance.

It sounds as though this contract may be based on the 'standard' contract drawn up some years ago used by many brokers. Have a look for a clause that specifies how long after rejection on the grounds of hidden defect the deposit will be repaid. It isn't immediate.
If it is in there, then it can specify a delay, brokers may forget to tell a purchaser who withdraws that the clause is in there in the hope they will give up and go away.

Brokers can be akin to Estate Agents in damp socks

That's a new line of enquiry for sure. I'll have a word tomorrow and revert.

Thank you, much appreciated.
 

RRV8

GCM
To be blunt, your mate has dropped £4k on the boat agent with little due diligence, and another £750 on a lawyer without being clear what he expects in return. Best advice you can give him is burn his cheque book and cut up his cards before he loses any more.

....plus the £1,100 for the survey and its associated fees so he is down £6,250 plus a few other travel and admin costs too.

.....so circa £7K in for the square root of nowt!
 

RRV8

GCM
If he has not already done so a letter to the seller might be worth a shot, for the price of a stamp.

"Broker X, acting as your agent, is withholding my deposit contrary to sections (a, b, c) of the contract. In your position as Principal, could you please instruct your agent to honour these clauses between us and arrange for the refund of my deposit within 14 days. If I do not receive my deposit back in full within that time, I will be left with no option but to..." You could chuck in a bit of Googled Latin on the principles of agency..."In commercial law, a principal is a person, legal or natural, who authorizes an agent to act to create one or more legal relationships with a third party. This branch of law is called agency and relies on the common law proposition qui facit per alium, facit per se (Latin "he who acts through another, acts personally")."

The broker is the agent of the seller (the principal). It will do no harm to remind the principal that the person acting on his behalf is breaching the terms of the contract that was in place between them. It is possible that the seller does not know that the broker is double dipping. If nothing else, if it goes to legal at least he can demonstrate that he has tried all reasonable means to resolve it.

Now that is very clever wording and a sound plan indeed. You seem to be very good at this stuff sir.

As sad as it sounds but my own scope of help has been with the use of Google and a few ideas that I have picked up from the legal note pertaining to the problem so far.......so fairly poor all told.

It won't come as a surprise that it'll be me and the missus who ends up writing this note - for sure.

If nothing else it's worth a try and for just the price of a stamp too.

Very many thanks @The_Duke

All the best ;-)
 

The_Duke

LE
Moderator
Now that is very clever wording and a sound plan indeed. You seem to be very good at this stuff sir.

As sad as it sounds but my own scope of help has been with the use of Google and a few ideas that I have picked up from the legal note pertaining to the problem so far.......so fairly poor all told.

It won't come as a surprise that it'll be me and the missus who ends up writing this note - for sure.

If nothing else it's worth a try and for just the price of a stamp too.

Very many thanks @The_Duke

All the best ;-)
No problem. I am not a lawyer and my exams in contract law and agency were more to do with insurance than boats but the principles are the same.
 

Ayatollah

Old-Salt
I wonder if the guy was an actual Broker, Because Agents of all kinds work on a Percentage, and 4400 is not a true Broker % rate. Boat / Yacht brokers normally charge 10% !
 
Firstly, many thanks for taking the time to read and respond - it's really kind of you.

The Broker would be acting on behalf of the seller in this instance but our neighbour spoke with a legal adviser (this has has already cost him a few quid) who mentioned that the broker, by nature of re-advertising the boat on receipt of the rejection notice, would have a hard time arguing that he did not accept the rejection.

My take on things is that it cost £4,400 for the deposit but then how much would it cost to get legal representation, perhaps a whole load more.

One thought (and I know nowt about the process) was the implementation of a small claims court procedure but I'm not entirely sure how it works or on what basis he would have to claim.

For what it's worth my pal doesn't have a great deal of money to play with. He's a single guy, one generation over me who rents his small house and wants to move to a boat as a permanent residence.

Many thanks for your help ;-)
It is well worth checking to see if his contents insurance has legal expenses cover - I reckon I saved myself about £40-£50k few years back because mine did...
 

corby

Old-Salt
I’m sure the advice given here is pretty sound and will give food for thought. I would also have a look here Forums - LegalBeagles Forum
I‘ve posted before that I had great help with an issue I had with a questionable firm of solicitors.
All the best and good luck to your neighbour.
 
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