Long Term rental- agent fees rip off

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02 Jul 2009 00:00 by tmdaniel Star rating. 22 posts Send private message

A family member of mine recently rented out their property on a long let, the agent took the 1st months rental as their fee, then she recieved 2 further payments fomr the occupant.

However he never paid the 3rd months reant, they kept making excuses for him sayng that they had been in contact and he would be paying shortly. It turns out he had done a runner, stolen the TV and many other items and pretty much wrecked the appartment.

My issue is that can i claim any of the fee back fomr the letting company, as i feel that they havent provded a full service and didnt try to help once they had their fee. The cynic in me thinks maybe the letting company is in cahoots with the occupant as if they secure another let they will effectively get double the payment??!!!

Does anyone know what her position is?





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02 Jul 2009 11:42 by altealavella Star rating in Orxeta. 42 posts Send private message

I let properties for long and short rental, i charge 100 euros fee from the owner and 100 euros from the tenant.

I do checks on the tenants and charge 2 months refundable deposit and 1 months rent up front (long lets)

Then should the tenant leave there is enough deposit to cover breakages, theft and outstanding bills.



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02 Jul 2009 13:38 by mariadecastro Star rating in Algeciras (Cadiz). 8588 posts Send private message

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Is there a contract with agent? A contract with owner? Depending on how payments were described in the contract you will or will not have action against the letting agency.

Where is the agency located? Andalucia? Did they comply with the Consumers regulations for this type of companies? 

Best,

Maria



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Lawyer

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02 Jul 2009 15:34 by tmdaniel Star rating. 22 posts Send private message

there is a contract with the owner and the agent for an 11month rental, they are based in Marbella, called Exclusive Marbella





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02 Jul 2009 15:38 by joanmalaga Star rating in Costa del Sol. 422 posts Send private message

Im afraid its not the first time ive heard from this company and the comments are never too good!

All depends on what payments were for, if out of the 3 month payments you received one was for the agent, one as deposit and another as the first month rent, as long as the month deposit covers the damages i do not helive there is much you can do.

Nevertheless if the damage is not covered by the deposit it is my understanding that you can go after the tenant for this.

I hope your tenant signed an inventory agreeing to which items were in the property!

Joan





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03 Jul 2009 10:47 by tmdaniel Star rating. 22 posts Send private message

thanks Joan, they claimed this is the 2nd time this has happened in 10 years, which i find hard to believe. Noone can get hold of the tenent, but i do have his passport number. What was stolen isnt of huge value, its just the hassle and having to get all the locks changed!





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03 Jul 2009 11:37 by Rixxy Star rating in San Pedro. 2011 posts Send private message

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 To be honest there isnt a lot you can do and its preferable to having one in the apartment who stays and doesnt pay!

It does happen, it is getting more comon and was one of the reasons I sold my rental business 3 years ago. The agency you went through may or may not be inefficient, but usually agents advertise, find a tenant, sign the 11 month contract, check and sign inventory and thats the end of their involvement unless you enter a management contract.

They usually take 2 months fee from the tenant, 1 damages deposit which in effect they sometimes hold on to, and 1 rental in advance. 1 of these would be their fee for finding the tenant.

If the tenant has disappeared and stolen, then it is the tenant you have issue with but tyring to find them will be nigh on impossible. You could place a denouncia on the tenant as you have their passport details which may cause them a problem at some stage but if all that has gone is the tv, then really you would be better off replacng the tv and the locks and you get the deposit back from the agents to cover it from the damages deposit - you are entitled to the full amount.

It is a horrible experience, when I started getting tenants not paying, it made me so upset on behalf of the owners and I had 1 particular guy who promised and promised, stayed for months with the owners persmission and then refused to move. The owner spent a lot of money to legally remove them but it left me with a bad experience.

Good luck



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03 Jul 2009 15:39 by tmdaniel Star rating. 22 posts Send private message

thanks rixxy

to be honest its not the value of whats been stolen, it was only a cheap tv!  Its the hassle it has caused and the invasion that someone has abused your trust, but hey i guess thats life. From what i've heard  i think long lets ore off the agenda for her and me now. I think its safer to stick to short term holiday rentals!





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03 Jul 2009 16:12 by morerosado Star rating in Guardamar del Segura.... 6943 posts Send private message

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Hi Tmdaniel

Sorry to hear this, I really am. We hear it a lot on forums. It's unacceptable.

You initially said ' A family member of mine recently rented out their property'

You  also said (about your family members tenant)  ' It turns out he had done a runner, stolen the TV and many other items and pretty much wrecked the appartment' but now you're saying 'its not the value of whats been stolen, it was only a cheap tv!'

I'm rather confused. Was it just a TV (cheap or otherwise) or many other items plus trashing the apartment ?

Seems a lot happened.

Short term holiday rentals may not necessarily be any better, there's good & bad, sadly.



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04 Jul 2009 09:16 by mariadecastro Star rating in Algeciras (Cadiz). 8588 posts Send private message

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To see if you can claim something against the agency I would need to see the contract.

As an additional advise: I recommend you to submitt your contracts to arbitration better than Courts and to hire an unpayments insurance. There are some in the market.



_______________________

Maria L. de Castro, JD, MA

Lawyer

Director www.costaluzlawyers.es

El blog de Maria



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06 Jul 2009 16:36 by tmdaniel Star rating. 22 posts Send private message

morerosade

i meant the TV was cheap, she didnt have a 50inch Sony LCD on the wall! There was quite a bit stolen, but nothing worth a huge amount. As i said its the hassle of replacing things and tidying it up that is annoying, as well as replacing all the locks and getting a new safe

I doubt there is any Legal claim against the agency, its just morally it feels wrong that they get paid in full





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06 Jul 2009 16:50 by morerosado Star rating in Guardamar del Segura.... 6943 posts Send private message

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Collectively the amount stolen or damaged amounted to more than a cheap TV though, that was my point.

Has she made a denouncia with the police which her insurers will need ?

I assume she was well insured for having tenants ? (I've known many who aren't). Her insurance should deal with certain things like replacement locks, replacement items stolen or damaged etc, I assume.

Don't owners insure on a 'new for old' basis in Spain ? (That was a general comment to anyone).

(Just trying to help here, good luck).



This message was last edited by morerosado on 06/07/2009.

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07 Jul 2009 09:41 by tmdaniel Star rating. 22 posts Send private message

Thanks for your help, she is in spain at the moment, she was insured for all the new locks etc and is making the denouncia with the police today





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