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Do not use this agency. We let a flat with them for 15 months. Rent was always late, by three months in the end, and they owed us over £6500 at the end of the contract. They failed to get gas certificates, claiming the boiler did not meeting standards so certificates were not issued. Strange as our subsequent managing agent passed the boiler with no concerns on its inspection. They failed to register the tenants deposit, and during the tenancy I had to deal with many issues raised by tenants as they could not get in touch with David Philips. I could write pages of problems we encountered because of their appalling management. The Tenants looked into claiming deposits back and were told they have to take landlords to court as they have final responsibility. The landlord can then take the agent to court. We worked with the tenants and took DP to small claims court after three months. Badgering, threats, etc were no use as the promises they made were subsequently ignored. I would give them a months written notice if you are owed money and then do the same. It was straightforward (information on gov.uk is good and was easy to follow) and we have recovered most of our money as the court ruled in our favour pretty quickly. We are now in the process of enforcing a judgment to get the rest I.e. bailiffs. Islington trading standards were not much use. They appear to be keeping an eye on things rather than pressuring DP. It is embarrassing for DP that staff have to tell their customers to take Copestake to court and give out the ITS number to help reclaim money. They are also being investigated by the Property Ombudsman for falsely claiming to being registered with them to give themselves an air of prefoessionality. There is a real power struggle going on there and I would keep your property and money well away from them.
As with the previous review, David Philip Copestake, MD of David Philips, DoB 24/04/68, according to the David Philip office manager Jenny O'Neill, appropriated nearly a year of rent owed to me, the tenant's deposit and also the insurance fees for securing the tenant's deposite that I paid. (The money was meant to go into an account for children's education so the account was not monitored regularly.)
In 15 February 2010, David Philip Copestake was given multiple warnings by the Office of Fair Trade as per the Estate Agents Register on their website, yet continued operating. See http://www.oft.gov.uk/OFTwork/estate-agents/register/earalpha/#named4 to confirm.
His crime reference number with Action Fraud is CRN:
NFRC130300185828 if you want to call Action Fraud at 0300 123 2040 or register your own complaint.
He also has outstanding multiple unsatisfied judgements, as ascertained through Registry Trust Limited, which means he knows that people whose money he has stolen cannot get their money through the courts. (Northampton court, case number 2YN02929, 09/01/13; Northampton CCBC case number 2QT43818, 10/05/12; Doncaster court, case number 09000034S).
LEWIS & COMPANY UK LTD, a chartered accountancy, are company officers with D P Homes Limited where David Philip Copestake is Director, at 19 Goodge Street, London, but D P Homes appears to have zero assets and is non-trading.
Very poor administration is the best thing that can be said for this agency. No rental payments received until two months into tenancy, agent claimed to have allocated rent to another property. Subsequent payments needed to be chased, no remittance advice, no breakdown of charges issued.
Several months later payments either short or missing, queries not answered. Eventually told that they had spoken to the tenants and one had not been paying rent. Told them that the tenanancy would not be used and that we would be moving agencies.
Jenny at David Philips then came back to say that the rent had been paid and that they had failed to allocate the payments to the property. In January they agreed that they owed us around 3 months rent, it is now March and we have not been paid. Now chasing them in the courts.
Moved existing tenants to a new agency, only to find that the deposit was not placed in any authorised protection scheme. Had to pay deposit from my funds and chase David Philips for repayment.
David Philips excuse for not paying is that it can only be authorised by David Philips Copestake (the director) who is never available.
Feels like the company might be going the way of David Philip Copestake (Stroud Green) Ltd that went into liquidation in February this year.
The company claims to be part of the property ombudsman scheme but it is only registered for sales. I guess they only sign up to the bare minimum required by law.
David also appears to be involved in some property development business, another excuse that I have been given for never being able to contact him.
Avoid ALL business dealing.
Why do I have to give at least one star?
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