Misleading advertising

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    Misleading advertising

    hi - sorry thought this best place to do this - property offered with special concessions (as its been empty for 3 months) - offering half price rent and nil deposit *
    been all the way through the process repeatedly asking about pro rata rent for month (starting tenancy monday 12th ) but letting agents ignored this and are still asking for whole 50% of rent rather than pro forma and suddenly have dropped in BOND required £350 + admin fee - advert (which i copied ) specifically states NIL DEPOSIT (and is still viewable on their website)
    are they wriggling by saying its a bond and not a deposit ? and is it worth complaining to letting ombudsman ?

    #2
    There's no difference between a bond and a deposit and yes it's worth complaining, but I'd start with trading standards.
    When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
    Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

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      #3
      thanks i will wait for their feedback

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        #4
        Well .... there are two entirely separate issues here:

        a) Is a landlord or agent allowed to change the terms of the letting from those advertised? I am afraid they are. If a property is advertised at a rent of 1000, and I have a high risk tenant or a tenant with a pet come along, I am entitled to offer it at a higher rent. Or change any other terms I like - a revised offer. Advertising something is not always a binding offer to contract on those precise terms and only on those terms.

        b) Are they allowed to mess around with the meaning of a deposit -- no -- but as far as I can see that hasn't happened yet -- until it happens. But it might happen.

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          #5
          An advert is pretty much always an offer to contract (it's technically an offer to treat).
          If the offer's conditional, it should probably say so.

          In reality, it happens all the time - no one complains about it and no one suffers any loss, so it's a tad academic.

          It's not legal to offer half price rent and no deposit when it's not actually available.
          Misleading terms - Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations.

          Hence, trading standards.
          When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
          Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

          Comment


            #6
            I'm not sure about that JP -- An offer is not an invitation to treat. The two are equivalent when the offering party makes it clear that he is prepared to be bound immediately the offer is accepted by the first (or all) person(s) to whom it is made. Offering tenancy agreements are not the same as (the famous) case law to do with selling a piano to "the public". Furthermore any counter-offer at all by the buyer (the buyer seems to be negotiating with regard to pro-rata rent and a start date) actually kills the original offer anyway.

            A tenancy advert is rather non-specific : For example the start date is non-specified, as, often is the duration. Seller could say yes, I hear your acceptance, but the tenancy starts tomorrow, there are no pets. Immediately buyer says No -- then there is a negotiation - and the advert is instantly irrelevant. Seller says "Yes you can start later (as OP wants) but the deposit is then £1000".

            I do take your point, and agree that there was probably some sharp advertising going on here. But I am not sure it is the same as arriving at a cashier armed with an advertisement. It is a case of "I have 10 tenants I could accept - I don't generally take tenants on "benefits", but I am happy to take you and your pet with a 10% uplift" - that is not a case of false advertising.

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              #7
              I completely agree that any counter offer kills the original offer.

              The point at which the contract is formed is essential, and I suspect that you are correct.
              The conventions and common practices of letting a property are that there is a process to go through, and you can't set a contract simply by being the first to say yes to the advert.

              On the other hand, if that's the case, any advert should make that clear.
              Applications to, subject to conditions.

              And in this case, it's misleading advertising, because it's offering a non-existent discount (one of the things the legislation was specifically designed to stop).
              When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
              Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
                I completely agree that any counter offer kills the original offer.
                ......
                And in this case, it's misleading advertising, because it's offering a non-existent discount (one of the things the legislation was specifically designed to stop).
                Yes, I am in full agreement now.

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                  #9
                  What date does AST/ad say is the Start Date?
                  Rent is due in full by this date or when T is given the keys to occupy (if later).
                  The Agent is still offering 50% rent for an unknown period (but I assume first month) and now requires a Bond, which tech remains Ts property.
                  My guess is that OP cannot raise the upfront funds required.
                  My advice to LL is withdraw the offer (if poss) & walk.

                  What happened to the art of negotiation before resorting to the Law?

                  Comment

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