Thanks Alex. Yes, there was a signed contract between us.
Well that's my interpretation of it. What does the law say about:agents not providing the managed service they should have? And acting on my behalf without my consent? They have tried to pin everything on the tenant knowing full well it would be difficult for me to prove the tenant was responsible for the damage I found.
But it was part of the agreement they would do inspections etc?
Yes, and they had been doing it (or least I received a letter every 3 months saying the property had been inspected) until Jan 2012.
In that case they are in breach of contract as they should have done it every 3 months and also in breach of section 13 of the sale and supply of goods and services act by failing to act with all reasonable skill and care.
You need to write and set out your losses and request a refund within 14 days or say you will go to Court within 14 days. You should make sure you send this recorded delivery and keep a copy.
If they do not refund you then you can issue proceedings in the County Court. You can either do this online at: www.moneyclaim.gov.uk or by completing form N1 http://hmctsformfinder.justice.gov.uk/courtfinder/forms/n001-eng.pdf and take it to your local County Court.
The Court will then issue a claim which a copy will be sent to the Defendant who will have a limited time to defend it, if not you can enter Judgment and enforce.
If the matter is defended it will be set down for a trial. If the claim is for £10,000 or less it will be a small claim and you will not need representation.
Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?
Thanks for that Alex. I think that's clear, I'll proceed that approach. I tried the Property Ombudsman but they provided no support or clarity and just wanted me to complete endless paperwork to waste my time. Thanks again, Elio