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Jamie-Law, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 11093
Experience:  Solicitor
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I am a landlady who previously used an estate agent as a

Customer Question

Good morning.I am a landlady who previously used an estate agent as a letting managed agent. It has just come to light that they never informed the utility provider (Gas & Electric) of the meter reading when the tenant moved out, nor when the next one entered the property. They were also the only key holder at that time.
I have now been issued a bill c. £500 from the utility provider. What can I do to recover this money from the estate agent?Since this is a breach of contract can I make a claim for the money which was paid as the Management Letting Fees for the duration of the time the tenants were in place?Plus, can I make a claim for the money c.£500 which I paid as exit fees when I withdrew the property from their estate agency?It is clearly stated in the Letting Managed Agreement they would inform the utility providers of meter readings and changes in tenants.Thanks, Ruth
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  Jamie-Law replied 9 months ago.

Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you with your question today. I am reviewing it, please give me a moment.

Expert:  Jamie-Law replied 9 months ago.

Did they otherwise manage the property save for meter reading?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
for the most yes, though in other areas of the estate agent - different branch they did not aheared to my requests
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
no thank you... please respond via message or email. Thanks
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
it is a fairly straight forward breach of contract
Expert:  Jamie-Law replied 9 months ago.

Ok it is. But save for the difference in meter readings there is no loss.

You can claim the difference in energy used. But that is it. You can’t claim £500 for exit fees as that is not your loss.

Your loss is the energy cost, nothing more.

I am sorry if this is not the answer you want, nor the one I want to give you, but I have a duty to be honest.

Can I clairfy anything for you about this today please?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
The exit fees which I had to pay would not have been applied from the estate agent if there was due course to remove the properties from their management.... Surely them not sticking to their terms and conditions is due cause, and therefore I should be refunded this money?The letting fees were paid for a service which they did not adhere to. updating the utility providers is one of their key 8 services... could I claim at least 12.5% of the fee paid?This has wasted my time, which also has a cost, in resolving it with the utility provider....
Expert:  Jamie-Law replied 9 months ago.

You can claim direct losses. Those are the sums you can claim. You can’t profit from their breach.

So any direct losses can be claimed.

Does that clarify?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
the exit fees are direct losses, no? since they were a cost I encurred through taking my property out of their management... they made a mistake and the utility company has prooven it
Expert:  Jamie-Law replied 9 months ago.

It was not a major mistake. It was the only one as you said they managed everything else fine.

So I don’t think you can claim that, just the losses as a result of the energy.

That is your loss. You could have kept the managing with as this was the only error.

Does that clairfy?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
I would not have kept the management with them, this is a costly error, and also one that demonstrates poor administration
Expert:  Jamie-Law replied 9 months ago.

But you did not have to end the agreement. I assume it was for a specified period and you could have seen that out.

I asked specifically if they were ok - you said generally they were.

That is why I dont think that fee is recoverable.

But you can try and claim that, but I dont think you would succeed.

Does that clarify?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
The agreement was for an opened ended period, and there were problems with another branch of the same firm hence yet I exited all of the properties... So no chance?
Expert:  Jamie-Law replied 9 months ago.

I think are you in difficulty.

You can try of course, but there is no guarantee you will win

Does that clarify?

Expert:  Jamie-Law replied 9 months ago.

If this answers your question could I invite you rate my answer 3, 4 or 5 stars before you leave today.

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