93 Borough Road
Python Properties -Fraudulent & deceptive company
9th February 2009
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This is a letter detailing my formal complaint for the issue regarding my previous tenancy at Flat 3 143 Marton Rd, TS1 2EA.
First I would like to begin by saying that prior to the letter I received on Friday 9th February I had no other correspondence from Python Properties since the conclusion of my contract in June 2008. The letter was threatening legal action in 7 days for an amount of £188.41 with no information as to what this sum regarded. On Monday I went into the office and the first question I asked the employee at the desk was "Is this a joke?" She rang the finance department upstairs whilst I was sat at the desk and told me that the amount was for excess usage of utilities, in other words Python were alleging that they were paying my bills even though they were arriving in my name and I was paying them every month, somehow mysteriously Python were also paying the same bills. I told her that was inaccurate as I paid all my utilities myself. She told me to put it in writing and I scribbled a very quick note detailing the situation I also asked for a copy of my contract to be attached to my letter which was done. I was told that I would get a call by the end of the week. That same day I went to the housing association where Tony rang Python on my behalf querying the situation at present and requesting that a statement of the charges be sent to me which never happened. He also asked that Jonathon the finance manager call me the following day with the name of the person I could complain to other than Python's head manager, which was the name we were given. This phone call never came so on Friday 13th November 2009 I went into the office and asked to see Jonathon, I was told that he was in a meeting and had been since 9am, it was now 11am. The employee instead of calling him which is the usual procedure went upstairs and took more than a matter of seconds to tell me that he was in a meeting, she said she would put a note on his chair and ask for him to call me. I asked her to call me when he was out of the meeting so that I could come back and she said she would. At 12pm I came back to the office and was told that he was still in a meeting. Then Sarah the office manager came over as I had asked for a copy of my contract and was querying what the words exclusive of utilities meant, just in case I was so incompetent to have misunderstood the contract I signed two years ago for a 1 bedroom property at £360 per month excluding utilities. She clarified that my contract did clearly state that bills were not included and said in such a calm, soft tone that sometimes the utility companies can take a long time getting back to Python with regards to arrears of old tenants, obviously explaining away the 8 month delay in this amount arising. As I had not spoken to Jonathon after a week I asked her to write on a piece of paper that I had come in to discuss the situation and that the court proceedings would be put on hold. She told me some story about being the office manager and not wanting to do it because of some vague reason that I don't remember. I was rather insistent and was given a headed paper from her that said that I had been in the office and was awaiting a call from Jonathon, however when I asked her to sign it she refused to do so. I left under the impression that I would be called that afternoon as I had been told by the staff. A call never came, so at 3.40pm I called the office and was put on hold for more than two minutes to be told he was in a meeting and would call on Monday, the same meeting he'd been in since 9am. I made my feelings very clear to the person on the other end of the phone, I told them that the whole situation was fraudulent, that they were running rings round me telling me that he was always in meetings. Basically treating me like an idiot. I wasn't being given a straight answer by anyone but being told I would get a call back and I made it very clear that I intended to seek legal action. This whole situation is an absolute joke, and the behaviour and reception I have received makes me know that everything is not above board, the fact that my calls were not being taken, and that calls were never made in front of me, but out of the ordinary the staff would go upstairs. Considering that I left the property in June 2008 it makes little sense why it would take until February 2009 for this to come to light, even more so the fact that I was refunded £50 in November 2008 when I was supposedly in arrears. In my opinion this seems like a fraudulent operation to obtain money through deception. It's unrealistic to expect me to keep bills 8 months after I have moved out of a property when I have other bills to deal with. I also have good authority to believe that four other people have received similar letters from Python and after writing back to them querying the charge, it was written off as a good will gesture. Today I went into the office at 11am and spoke to Stacey who as usual went upstairs only to come back and tell me he was in a meeting and had been since 9am, something I had heard before. I was told that he would call me before 2pm and I said that if he doesn't call I would come back in. He didn't call as I expected and I actually arrived back to the office at 1.40pm, again she went upstairs and emerged saying he was still in a meeting and he would call at 5pm. I'd heard that so many times that I was getting sick of it so told Stacey that I would come back at 3.30pm, bring my assignments and sit there until 5pm. She said "If you'd like to do that you can," and I reiterated that I would be doing that. At 4pm I came back to the office, she went upstairs said that he was in the building but she didn't know where he was, maybe he was in the toilet or another room. After a few minutes she went back upstairs said he was in a meeting and that hopefully he would be down before 5pm. Less than five minutes later he emerged and walked into a back office with Stacey for an indeterminate length of time, then when he came back out he introduced himself and started to give me some fancy talk about how he had been paying my utilities and that was because the people before me and the people after me had their utilities included so the system had not been updated when I moved in, he also said that it took such a long time because the audit had only recently been checked. What was confusing was why utilities would be paid to my property when my contract said otherwise, additionally the fact that my bills were in my name and were never in credit. He asked me to provide proof that I paid the bills and I said that considering the fact that they paid the bills then they should provide me the proof. He said he could photocopy the bills and give them to me by Friday. I was rather confused as to why it would take 5 days for a few bills to be copied and why he couldn't have those documentation ready for me so that he could present his "proof." I told him very clearly that my father is a solicitor and that I intended to seek legal advice because I was not happy about receiving a threatening letter, which he alleged was not the first one, however mysteriously it was lost in the post. I explained how angry I was especially since I was paying out £500 for rent and utilities every month that I was a tenant in this accommodation. Jonathan's attitude towards me was rude and unprofessional. It was though I was prejudged for being a student and not spoken to with the respect I deserve. The customer is always right and there is never any need for an employer to raise their voice and speak in such a condescending tone towards an individual as though they are illiterate and don't have the freedom to express the way they feel about situation created by Python. I asked Jonathon who was going to pay for my phone bills were I rang up utility companies and received no reply, considering the fact that he wants me to prove what is written in my contract, it would have been a good will gesture for him to suggest that I use the phone there, but that wasn't an option. I told him that I would not get any proof and that I would happily go to court because I know that I will win the case with my eyes closed. I would like to add that Python are fraudulent and dishonest because according to Jonathon the people before and after me had their utilities paid for them however when I did contact the utility companies they told me that the current tenants are not paying bills and have not been paying bills since June 2009 when I moved out. That's a rather interesting piece of information considering that Python is supposedly paying the bills. For your information I am not going to allow you to think you have control over this situation, I intend to take this matter further and that is a promise.
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