Agent's responsibility for broken contract

Discussion in 'General Property Investment Discussion' started by Compaul, Jun 12, 2018.

  1. Compaul

    Compaul New Member

    hi guys. first post here. I came here seeking advice whilst encountering a number of emotions, primarily rage.
    I've had a property for around 4 years and on the whole it's been a relatively hassle free experience until recently.
    When the property was vacated by the previous tenants, I gave it to an agent. I had enquired in a few places and this guy pestered me, repeatedly called me saying he could rent it, had people waiting, could get it filled within a week etc. His other major attraction as per his claims was quality of tenant - for every 1 accepted, 10 are rejected for failing to meet his strict criteria of job/income/references etc.
    Ever the schmoozer - big talk when it comes to selling his services. I fell for it.
    In the end, it took many weeks to find a tenant - there was always an excuse like time of the month, time of the year and other classics. I had even taken steps to seek tenants elsewhere when he came back with a great tenant - supposedly - one that he has known personally for years through a professional tenant - agent relationship, one he can vouch for etc. Again the big talk. Lovely people, no hassle etc.
    Less than a month in!!!! I get the call saying they're moving out. Obviously I'm incensed. So much hassle I don't need and after paying 4 figures, I really expected a half decent calibre of tenant who wouldn't mess me around. I can't prove it but I'm sure he knew already that there was something going on behind the scenes with this tenant and this was just a stop-gap of unknown time.
    Now the agent is offering as a gesture of goodwill(!) to source new tenants for free. My issue is he took too long and the quality is poor. So I will find the next tenants elsewhere. Why would I want to re-engage someone whose services have been exceptionally poor so far?
    What I want to know is legally and morally what is his obligation as far as the commission and his work with me?
    Surely it's reasonable for me to not want to work with him given the bad experience, so the offer of finding a tenant for free is not suitable.
    I also think that any decent and reasonable professional agent will see this situation as a failure from their perspective and that returning the deposit is a fair recourse. Surely agents live and die by their reputation and he hardly comes up smelling of roses here.
    Thoughts please?
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