I am 25 year old student (ex-squaddie), and I need a little advice after a problem I have had dealing with a dodgy letting agency.

This company solely lets to students, who they can take advantage of. Recently, they tried to have me over with the legal contract and some other stuff.

The contract included clauses such as I was responsible for any structural damage, the final two weeks would have cost me four weeks rent, or any outstanding bills (ones they were paying!). After I asked them to change these things and asked to see a copy of the landlords insurance, the company has decided not to let me the property. They also told me the property did not require a CP12, as the boiler was under 12 months old!

They obviously didn't want somebody who had a little bit of common sense as I would have obviously been a problem as a tenent. Although, what has really wound me up the most is the manner in which they done this - they just sent back my deposit. They didn't even phone me to tell me this! So now I have missed the deadline to move back into halls, and all the houses in this town have gone.

So fellow Arrser's what I need to know is, how can I take this further. I want to cause them as much sh1t as possible. Is there any one I can report them to? Such as the local trading standards, or the council? They are also registered with the Law Society (supposedly).

At the moment, me and my housemates are planning to inform the uni housing office, and cause a stink so they are not allowed to advertise through the SU anymore - which as they solely deal with students could possibly send them under. But I am so annoyed I just want to cause them as much trouble as possible, so any advice/ideas would be appreciated.


Their is a legal ombudsman you can go to (numbers in the phone book). Be aware though that they are not quick, but they will investigate all aspects of the case fully and if the company are part of the Law society they are obligated to adhere to any decision the ombudsman makes.

Which town are you in? I would have thought the first thing to do would be to sort out somewhere to live.

Got some petrol?

Make a molotov.
Before reporting them to a third party, I would be inclined to write a letter to the senior partner of the firm to complain - the Law Society and the Ombudsman will expect you to have tried to resolve the problem with the firm first. Keep to the facts, resist the temptation to insult them, and don't threaten anything. Explain the position you now find yourself in as a direct result of the unprofessional way they acted, and ask what they propose to do to put things right.

They will probably rely on saying that they (or the property owners) are at liberty to refuse any particular let at will. Your argument is that they did not respond to your reasonable request to consider some of the contract terms (unfair contract terms have a specific meaning in law), and the way they returned your deposit. Ultimately, I suspect that all you'll get is an apology, since you haven't actually lost anything.

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