Two more agents expelled from Ombudsman
By |Published On: 11th November 2015|

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Two more agents expelled from Ombudsman

By |Published On: 11th November 2015|

This article is an external press release originally published on the Landlord News website, which has now been migrated to the Just Landlords blog.

Another brace of letting agents have been expelled by The Property Ombudsman after failing to pay compensation, not co-operating with an investigation and showing a lack of compliance to outlined codes of practice.

A S Moon & Partners from Northumberland and from Hounslow, have both been banned from the redress scheme for a minimum of two years.


The decision to remove CiyWest from TPO membership came about following a complaint from a would-be buyer who gave the agent £2,500 for what he maintained was a deposit. However, the agent said that this fee was to fund speaking to mortgage lenders and arranging with suitable solicitors.

After consideration, the Ombudsman did not accept that the initial fee was a deposit. As a result, when the potential purchase fell through, the fee was not refunded. The Property Ombudsman criticised CityWest’s lack of explanation into whether the fee would be retained or returned. In addition, he considered the taking of the fee as unfair business practice. It has transpired that the potential buyer’s first language is not English and he was a first time buyer.

In spite of the agent claiming that they had charged the would-be buyer for their time, it emerged that the complainant was billed before the start of any work.

Two more agents expelled from Ombudsman

Two more agents expelled from Ombudsman

No Moon rising

A decision to expel A S Moon was taken following a complaint from a landlord of two properties. For the first, the complainant said that the agent returned a deposit to his tenant in full, despite there being significant damage to the property. For the second home, the landlord himself complained about not receiving rent and a failure to carry out a full inventory check, alongside failing to address and respond to the complaints made. As such, the Ombudsman upheld all complaints.

‘In these cases, both agents have failed to co-operate fully and bot have failed to pay awards made,’ said Property Ombudsman chair elect, Gerry Fitzjohn. ‘In the case of A S Moon & Partners the sum of £750 and in the case of CiyWest the sum of £2,800.’[1]

‘I would like to remind agents of their obligation to co-operate with any investigations by TPO, The Ombudsman requires any evidence they can provide and that is their chance to put across their side of the story. While the vast majority of agents do co-operate, the small number who do not do so, put themselves at greater risk of having a complaint upheld, when The Ombudsman has only the consumer’s evidence to consider, Fitzjohn added.[1]





About the Author: Em Morley (she/they)

Em is the Content Marketing Manager for Just Landlords, with over five years of experience writing for insurance and property websites. Together with the knowledge and expertise of the Just Landlords underwriting team, Em aims to provide those in the property industry with helpful resources. When she’s not at her computer researching and writing property and insurance guides, you’ll find her exploring the British countryside, searching for geocaches.

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