SimplyLet is a lettings agency in Guildford that many students use to get a place to live whilst studying in or around the town. I’ve personally been renting a house from them with 3 other friends and I’m shocked at the service we’ve received. Here’s why…
- They once turned up, unannounced, to shout at us
- They did not check the fire or carbon monoxide alarms were working before we moved in. We spent 3 months without working fire alarms until we realised.
- We paid £280 to have an inventory check carried out, and they missed out 30 problems including broken hobs and even a broken window – presumably to catch us out and make us pay at the end of the tenancy
- They did not have the property ready when we moved in, despite us giving them a week at the beginning of our tenancy to do this
- They do not respond quickly to our emails when maintenance needs doing at the property, and when they do they find excuses, ways to intimidate us or ways of delaying the process rather than dealing with the situation
- They provided us with a broken fridge/freezer, broken oven/hobs, broken lights, leaky taps, broken doors and windows, broken garden gates, dangerous wiring, broken blinds and broken tiles on the driveway
- The boiler failed it’s safety check initially and they blamed us. Following this, they altered the boiler before it could be checked again, then returned it to how it was after it passed the check
- They are unable to give us key information about the house on request
- They have not provided us with adequate freezer space
- They’ve blamed us for mould problems within the house (including bedrooms and kitchen cupboards), but this is due to a fault with the external walls which needs addressing
- They have provided us with mismatched furniture which is falling apart, and we’re not allowed to change it
- We paid high agency fees, a large deposit and a high monthly rent (which doesn’t include bills) to receive this poor service
Living at the Limit
So yeah, unsurprisingly I’m a little bit let down with renting in Guildford and I couldn’t be more behind The University of Surrey Student’s Unions new campaign, Living At The Limit. Luckily, the government is banning tenancy fees in the UK, as is already the case in Scotland, but more work needs to be done to address the standard of rented properties. With a lack of properties available in areas such as Guildford, landlord and lettings agencies are allowing standards to drop to alarmingly low levels.
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