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Are letting agents vicariously liable for 3rd party reference providers? | Discuss

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Are letting agents vicariously liable for 3rd party reference providers?
27/02/2017
3:08 pm
ngarrett
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27/01/2017
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I am new to this site having been royally shafted by a recent case resulting from completely incompetent and fraudulent referencing procedures.

The letting agent outsourced its referencing services to a 3rd party and we took the tenancy on its recommendation of a single occupant, marketing executive earning £65,000 pa. The tenant's application was bogus and she was actually a 24 yr old single mum of 2 and a dog, on housing benefit and in excessive council tax arrears at the time of application.

Rent stopped after month 2 and following a lengthy eviction process of court orders, bailiffs and police we have lost £11,000 in rent, £1,000 in fees and £6,000 in property repairs.

We referred the case to the TPO citing negligent referencing as bank accounts weren’t checked, pay slips weren’t sought and an employer reference was accepted from a ‘gmail’ email account without association to any company.

The TPO rejected our claim on the grounds that the agent had done its job by outsourcing the reference procedures in accordance with the code of practice. Contradictorily the TPO stated that the referencing procures by the 3rd party had been completely inadequate and failed to uncover the most basic of information, i.e. employment and affordability. The TPO found the 3rd party to be liable, not the agent!

We appealed the review citing the Hale v Blue Sky Properties case however, we’ve again been denied as the TPO commented that the agent was able to rely on the 3rd party reference which contained no adverse information in the report despite it saying “bank check N/A”.

We have no appointment to the 3rd party provider for recourse, only through our contract with the agent and I’m now trying to establish if we can pursue the agent on grounds of vicarious liability or through the law of agency and “principal and agent” definitions for its responsibility in outsourcing the negligent reference.

I fully intend to pursue the matter through the county courts to be vindicated and I appreciate any input/comment in advance.

27/02/2017
3:20 pm
Charless
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I know it's a bit late now (!!!!!) but for future tenancies PLEASE make sure you take out rent guarantee and legal expenses insurance Yell

28/02/2017
4:32 am
PaulBarrett
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Charless said
I know it's a bit late now (!!!!!) but for future tenancies PLEASE make sure you take out rent guarantee and legal expenses insurance Yell

Very good and easy advice to give.

Trouble is very few tenants can pass RGI checks

There are just an awful lot of duff people out there.

That is why many of them are tenants!

Feel terrible for the LL stitched up by the wrongun LA.

Been there myself

Only my losses are in the hundreds of thousands!!!

Never to he recovered!!

You have to he a really desperate LL to take on a tenant without RGI.

Or you have invested in a duff area where RGI tenants are hard to source.

Only when you can afford eviction costs can you then dispense with RGI

When you think the average eviction costs about £12000 all in that would a lot if positive cash flow from rents.

You would need about 10 properties to generate that sort if cash.

.RGI is the cheapest method

Just not so easy finding tenants who qualify!!

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