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JimLawyer
JimLawyer, Solicitor
Category: Law
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Experience:  Senior Associate Solicitor
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I am writing regarding the holding deposit We have signed

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Hello,
JA: Hi. How can I help?
Customer: I am writing regarding the holding deposit We have signed the contract which stated that holding deposit will not be refunded if the people do not pass the referencing process. I did not notice this notion of the contract as it was not mentioned to us during the verbal communication with the agency After my partners references didn't go through, one of the agents said he will try to return a half of holding deposit as my ref-s have gone through I have warned the agency that my partner does not work, and I am the bill payer. However, they did the credit history check and the check has failed as he did not have a credit or debit card with the payment history. We were really upset, but me and my partner went to look for another property with another agency. We have passed the references within one day. My question is -- is this legal to take and not return the holding deposit
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: London
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: We have called and wrote the agency, asking to return our holding deposit. First thing they said, is they will try to return a half of it as my ref-s have passed But now they also said that they will not return it at all
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: No, that's all

Hello, my name is Jim and I am a qualified lawyer happy to help you today.

They cannot take your holding deposit in your situation. The only time they can is if you decided not to go ahead with the property, mislead the landlord or agency, or failed an immigration check. Apart from that, they have to return it to you.

You should therefore contact Trading Standards on 03454 040506. If they can help then they will contact the agency and hopefully this will resolve the matter and you will be reimbursed. If not then you will need to fill out the attached form and send it to :

HM Courts & Tribunals Service First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber)

Residential Property 1st Floor

10 Alfred Place

London, WC1E 7LR

The Tribunal will then consider the written evidence and if the matter is capable of being decided on paper then you will receive the decision. No fee is payable upon filing this form. However, if the Tribunal says that a hearing is required, a fee of £200 is payable (which is refundable if the case goes in your favour).

I hope this helps - if you can please accept the answer and give me a 5 star rating (the top right of your screen & then click “submit”), I can answer follow up Q&A's at no extra charge and I will be credited for helping you today.

Many thanks,

Jim

Customer: replied 13 days ago.
Thank you very much! I will follow your advice.
Great, happy to have helped. Before you go if you can kindly rate 5 stars by clicking at the top of the screen and hit submit.
Have a good evening, Jim
JimLawyer and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 13 days ago.
Jim, just one more question - not sure what is meant by "misleading", could you please explain?
I am sure we have been honest with the agents, however I would like to know if they won't be able to turn this around for their own favour

misleading a landlord would be if you told them something which was untrue which then led them to giving you the lease.

Customer: replied 13 days ago.
Thank you for clarification. Will try to call Trading Standards to sort this out

Sincerely,
Maria

No problem, thanks again