The Property Ombudsman is the consumers resource for complaints against member estate agents and letting agents in the UK. They will deal with matters relating to their members who offer services that cover selling property, renting property,commercial property and overseas property. The property Ombudsman came into being on 1 May 2009 and was formerly, the Ombudsman for Estate Agents (OEA)
Once you have completed this checklist, please complete and sign the Complaints Form and send this together with copies of any supporting documentation.
Increasing Consumer Confidence
By dealing with a Member of the The Property Ombudsman the body wants to ensure that the public should feel confident about the estate agent‘s professionalism.
Many estate agents have in addition agreed to follow the TPO Code of Practice for Residential Estate Agents, approved by the OFT under its Consumer Codes Approval Scheme. Estate agents signing up to this Code of Practice are required to provide additional consumer protection that goes beyond that required by the law. They can be recognised by the joint TPO/OFT approved code logos which they display. Registered agents, who do not voluntarily accept the Code of Practice obligations of the OEA Scheme, are not entitled to show the OFT approved code logo.#
The Property Ombudsman provides a free service for dealing with unresolved disputes between sales and letting agents who have joined the TPO and consumers who are actual or potential buyers or sellers or landlords or tenants of residential property in the UK.
The Ombudsman’s role is to reach a resolution of unresolved disputes in full and final settlement and, where appropriate, he will make an appropriate award of financial compensation or other action for example make an apology.
A Consumer Guide, available in the offices of all sales and letting‘s agents who have joined the TPO, informs complainants that:
‘Your complaint may be considered by the Ombudsman, if you believe that the agent has:
- infringed your legal rights;
- failed to follow the rules and obligations set for agents under any code of practice to which they may subscribe;
- treated you unfairly;
- been guilty of mal administration (including inefficiency or undue delay)
- in a way that results in you losing money or suffering avoidable aggravation, distress and/or inconvenience.’