The Property Ombudsman (TPO) scheme has been providing consumers and property agents with an alternative dispute resolution service since 1990.

The Ombudsman’s resolutions are designed to achieve a full and final settlement of the dispute and all claims made by either party. The Ombudsman can, where appropriate, make compensatory awards in individual cases up to a maximum of £25,000 for actual and quantifiable loss and/or for aggravation, distress and/or inconvenience caused by the actions of an agent.

The Ombudsman provides redress, where appropriate, to consumers whose complaints are considered on a case by case basis.

The Ombudsman is not a regulator and does not have the authority to take regulatory or legal action against an agent, impose fines or dictate the way agents conduct their business. It can however expel agencies from the scheme and the quoted article below covers 3 such expulsions. In the first example, TPO is now warning consumers to be aware that the agent is not registered with a redress scheme, which every sales and letting agent is required to in order to trade legally.

Two of the cases referred to involved the agent not passing on rental income to the landlord. I have had 2 similar instructions from landlords in the past week and action is now being taken by me to recover the unpaid rent. Please contact me on g.archer@burywalkers,com if you have any queries.