CPS

CPS seems to be really into walking in on naked tenants. Voyeur kink, much?

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We decided to rent a house with CPS for our second year, a mistake. Aside from paying half rent over summer (2018) for a property we didn’t even have the keys for, all seemed ok…

Until we actually moved in, the kitchen was filthy, it took my housemate hours to clean it. At least my room came with a free gift, a pair of mouldy high heels at the back of the wardrobe!

After a few weeks living in the property, I noticed a thick layer of mould along the wall below the window sill. Around the same time, I started getting recurrent chest infections. Even after wiping it off, it came back after a few days. I contacted CPS who blamed me for the issue and reminded me of the ‘expensive dehumidifiers’ the landlord had purchased, out of the goodness of his heart! And told me to open a window.
Evidently these were measures we were already taking, two dehumidifiers don’t divide well between five tenants, and the fact that my room was on the first floor – particularly in autumn/winter, I obviously couldn’t keep the windows open 24/7.

Yet despite measures we took, the damp still accumulated every couple of days in huge amounts. I continued to email CPS, who maintained it was entirely my fault, and that it’s completely normal to wipe mould off a wall every few days, basic upkeep I suppose! I continued to have constant chest infections and even started coughing up blood from sleeping in a shithole every night. I spoke to my GP, who suggested the mould was likely contributing to it (I didn’t experience anything like it before I moved in).

Eventually (after emailing CPS consistently) I asked the council to send someone over to have a look, who advised the window needed to be resealed at the bottom, and the breeze of cold, damp air entering the room didn’t help. At this point we managed to get in contact with the landlord directly, who was happy to get it resealed quickly and take other measures to resolve it – funny, he didn’t seem to be aware of the issues that had been occurring, it seems CPS wasn’t even doing the bare minimum of letting him know of our concerns.

However, my personal favorite experience of CPS, was getting a knock on my bedroom door in the morning, followed by someone trying to open it (followed by 5 random students doing a viewing), as I lay naked in my bed, trying to get some rest after a night shift. When I told them to ‘fuck off’, the agent got a bit shitty, I suppose it is out of order denying strangers access to my bedroom and a view of my tits. Fortunately, CPS had graced us with a text message notice, 20 minutes before they arrived, clearly I was in the wrong for not hearing my phone go off whilst sleeping off my shift.
[This is completely out of order, 24 hours notice must be given and you have the right to refuse entry. ]

They also knocked on the bathroom door when I was doing a shit once, again without notice. I’m not sure how their potential tenants felt viewing the bathroom, as the scent of my feces, mixed with the Febreeze I attempted to cover it with, wafted towards them.

When we questioned this and the whole 24-hour notice rule, they told us they would give us notice every single morning otherwise, how thoughtful of them.


(Photos attached are after the 2 weeks I was home for Christmas, clearly I should have kept the dehumidifiers on, the window open, and returned every couple of days to wipe the walls down)

Rent: £325
Deposit returned?: Yes

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Rob is trying to steal a Piazza our heart!

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Rob Piazza is one of the kindest, sweetest people In Cardiff, no doubt! Super friendly, feels like more of an uncle than a landlord! You can text him anytime, if anything broke in the house it was replaced pretty much the same week with no resistance. The properties themselves were really well looked after and he has some fab maintenance men who can come fix things. Rob is super accommodating, If you can’t pay your rent on the 1st day of the month, you can ask him to delay cashing the cheque and give a date you’re able to pay (He actually understands the difficulties in student finance and debt.)

Top notch bloke, pity I only found him in my 4th year!

Rent: £310
Deposit Returned: Yes

Capital Properties

Capital Crisis

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We rented a house through Capital Properties in Cathays. We have rented with CPS and 2let2 before and neither compares to the experience we had at this house. When we first moved in the house was in an absolute state. Mouldy curtains, thick black mould in kitchen, YEARS worth of filth, brown and orange stains, broken furniture (beds missing leg frames and completely collapsed, wardrobes damaged and held together by chewing gum) and stained mattress covers. It was so disgusting we wrote and called repeatedly until they came and repainted the bedrooms. As for the black mould – the roof needed structural repair. After being told the bathroom renovation and roof would be done within around 10 days, I can tell you now this was an absolute lie. Months later the work was finally done, only to discover the newly fitted shower and the existing one upstairs didn’t work. Straight away we knew we had an issue with the boiler as the showers wouldn’t get warm, and it took them MONTHS to even send someone out to see what the issue was.

The maintenance man – a shoddy, untrained, unprofessional, misogynistic man who barely fixed anything and regularly fly-tipped broken furniture we forced them to remove from our property. Not only is he a maintenance man – he is a part-time bailiff – after one of us locked ourselves out of our room (we were still in the house) at 10 am on a Saturday he attempted to charge us £80, when we refused he waited outside our house for almost a week demanding to see my housemate. When asked why the charges were not £30 as in the tenancy agreement, he shouted: “that’s nothing to do with me!” – a professional at heart.

The landlords aka ‘Capital Properties’ – Anne Marie Hamzelou and Nader Hamzelou routinely take it in turns to direct Capital Properties, who conveniently have no public office you can visit and reliable phone number to reach them on. Interestingly, a quick search on Rent Smart Wales (the governing body for rented properties) will reveal that neither our landlord (Nader) nor capital properties held a supposed license to rent our property to us in the first place. After lodging a complaint with RSW and speaking to the council, they came and inspected the property – concluding that one of the rooms was actually not permissible and required structural change. We presume the council’s recent enlightenment was the only reason we were able to get the majority of our deposit back.

[Rent Smart Wales is a great resource and you can find their landlord listings here, if your landlord isn’t on here and own an HMO then they are breaking the law.
https://www.rentsmart.gov.wales/en/check-register/ ]

The year we rented with Capital Properties was the most stressful I have had to date, they are a shambles of a ‘company’.

DO NOT rent with them.

Rent: £340

Deposit returned?: Partially

Orinoco

Drugs, Mould and Rock and Roll

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We rented with Orinoco. When we moved in the fridge was full of maggots (initially they denied all responsibility and refused to clean), there were rats inside the house, mould on the walls, chewing gum on the floors, drug residue in the draws (burnt spoons, ripped foil, needles) and the whole house was dirty and had a musky smell. Throughout the tenancy we transformed the house, we deep cleaned it ourselves on move in, then again when Orinoco wanted to take photos for their website, for all their viewings and finally on move out (the place was spotless). During one of the deep cleans we took off the extractor fan chimneys to find that they weren’t connected to an external source, instead the smoke and steam was pumped straight back into the room. Not to mention the fact that throughout lockdown I transformed the garden from an overgrown skip to clean, tidy, presentable garden.

On move out the agent attended the property and commented on how clean it was and stated they would only charge for a burnt window sill in one of the rooms (fair enough). I was then shocked to receive a list of charges (mainly cleaning) worth £340. To top off the negligence and disgraceful nature of this company when trying to dispute their charges they took days to respond to every email. After numerous emails I managed to get the charges down to £140 (still £110 too much). At this point they said to accept it or consult a deposit agency where they threatened to charge the full £340. Not happy, will not rent with them again and would not recommend them to anyone! Avoid at all costs!!

Rent: £340

Deposit Returned?: Partially

Purple Premier Properties

Just in time, Justin Morris here to save the day

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We rented a house with Justin Morris as our landlord and Purple Premier Properties. He was incredibly professional, friendly and helpful from the start to finish of our tenancy. He would even come round and fix up little bits of the house unprompted (all with well more than 24 hours notice!) and was extremely speedy whenever we had any issues (Our biggest issue was a slightly loose toilet seat). The house was fitted and decorated nicely and we had no issues with anything breaking etc. We had our full deposit back in our accounts within a few days of moving out. His partners Gareth and Ella are also extremely professional and really helpful. 15/10 would recommend!

Rent: £330

Deposit returned?: Yes

Keylet

Expect a literal shit hole if you rent with Keylet and Richard Roberts

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Keylet were pretty good at first, and helped us negotiate a short-term let on a house in Splott. The landlord was Richard Roberts and the house was 142 Moorland Road, Splott. It was a nice house, and was actually one we’d already visited when we were doing house viewings for buying our house.  There was a huge crack in one wall, indicative of serious subsidence.  Keep an eye on this crack, we’ll see it again.  We saw the crack, said that there’s no way we’d buy a house with subsidence, and moved on.  How curious to be living there whilst our house purchase goes through!

We had a few nice months there, then our house purchase went through and we made the arrangements to move out.  One morning, a week before our moving day, I went into the garden to put some scraps on the bird table and noticed something yukky in the side yard by the kitchen… used toilet paper!  The drains were backing up.  Not a problem, this happens, we contacted KeyLet using their website reporting system and they sent someone round who tried to jet it.  No luck.  He said that the drain must have collapsed further down, and he demonstrated that when he fired the jet the water (and sewage) backed up out of the manhole he said was under the decking – you could see the water and sludge coming up between the decking planks.  Keylet decided that this meant it was Welsh Water’s problem, and put in a request to them.  The next day (day three now) Welsh Water came round and the first thing the chap said to me was “I’ve been here before”.  Turns out he’d been here for the same issue a few years back and the drain had collapsed in the garden.  He put the camera down and showed me… you could see that the blockage-to-sewer bit of the drain was bone dry, there hadn’t been any water down there in ages. 

Later I put in a request to Welsh Water to get a copy of all the historical requests on the property. So Welsh Water batted it back to Keylet, who sent someone else round the next day, and decided that he couldn’t do anything because he’d have to lift the decking to get to the manhole cover and he needed permission from the landlord for that and he went away again.
The next day, day five, two chaps came back and lifted the decking and discovered not a manhole but a sinkhole, with a huge space underneath, seriously huge.  This had been going on years.  The drain was completely collapsed and there had been lots of soil erosion.  The whole thing was a giant sludge of years of human waste, a literal open sewer.  The landlord had the problem a few years back and instead of fixing it they put decking over the hole, and that is almost certainly why the property had subsidence.

I was a little upset by this but not entirely surprised.  Keylet agreed to arrange for cleaning for our goods in the garden that were now spattered with mud and shit, and we moved out leaving the property empty but our rent paid until the end of the following month.  Over the next few days I returned to the property to arrange cleaning, collect mail, and nose at the repairs.  It was immediately obvious that the repair was not being done properly.  I did some internet research on the issue and spoke to a chap I know in the business and the garden should have been opened right up.  Somehow they managed to repair the collapsed drain without any evidence of opening the hole up more to get an actual drain pipe in there, or any sign of hardcore or other filler going in.  Still, maybe they managed to get it done properly but I doubt it.  Meanwhile, I’m trying to get Keylet to get our garden stuff cleaned and they’re trying to get me to remove it.  In the end they provided us with a giant huge unmanageable tarp to put in our car and a hand steamer for cleaning it… a steamer rated for use indoors only.  It was the most passive-aggressive response to our request imaginable.   Like, they accepted it was their fault our stuff was covered in shit but they were going to do their best to ensure it couldn’t be cleaned properly! 

Oh yeah, and when I visited to take final meter readings there was a chap plastering over the giant crack. I expect that some poor sod has brought the house and will first learn of the subsidence when the back of the house falls into a giant hole in the back garden.

I did some research and realised that we couldn’t sue because the standard of evidence is too high and the price of legal representation is too steep.  It would cost us thousands to get, at best, hundreds.  But we did discover that Keylet hadn’t protected our deposit because why would they bother with something like the law, so we filed a court case and they settled before the case for a few grand.  Remember kids if you don’t have a protected deposit then you get 2-3 times the amount from the courts.

Horizon

Damp on the Horizon.

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Which problem do I start with?

I have been with Horizon for two years, at two different address. Both as bad as each other. One of the landlords was V Al Khafaji. The list of things wrong throughout each tenancy just keeps growing.

Both had mould problems; the kitchens were disgusting; the house wasn’t cleaned properly, yet blamed us when moving out for it not being clean (it was spotless). The second house had rats, cockroaches, holes in the floor. The bed broke, there was a leak in the kitchen, a hole in the extension roof that was apparently ’fixed’ during lockdown (they lied).

All in all, don’t rent from horizon unless you like constant contact with their automated email and a shoddy manager that cares more about her Bentley then human lives.

Rent: 350

Deposit returned: Didn’t have one

Olivia Louise Ltd

Can’t even joke about the shite this poor lady has been through

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Olivia Louise Ltd acted as landlord on behalf of Ruth Collishaw that owned the property. When I had to leave my job because of battling a stage 4 disease I fell behind on rent. I was then sent a section 21 notice that expired 30th June 2020. During COVID 19 restrictions and lockdown I decided to stay with my mother to help with my care and decided when I came out of the hospital that I would get removal vans to vacate the property. I planned to do this by the section 21 notice date given which was signed by both Olivia Louise Ltd & Ruth Collishaw.

When I arrived at the property the locks had been changed. My whole life including possessions of my deceased brother that I will never ever get back or replace which are priceless were gone!! My huge £2,000 corner sofa, my 50” TVs, money, family photographs, my clothes, shoes, ornaments you name it! I did not vacate or surrender my tenancy before the notice due date. Therefore the landlord or the estate agent had NO RIGHT to enter the property without my say so or unless it was an emergency.

When addressing this to Olivia Louise Ltd they claimed to not have anything to do with it or have any knowledge of it. They blamed the landlord taking the law into her own hands. When the police got involved and I recorded the call, Olivia Louise Ltd states the landlord called them and told them they had been into my flat and removed goods. They told her she should not have and the landlord gave them new keys after the locks were changed? Now I’m sorry but as an acting landlord, they are supposed to contact ME if they feel the property is in any form of danger. They need to contact the police if I do not respond to gain entry as I am still the lawful tenant by contract and notice! THEY DID NONE OF THIS! Why did they not contact me the day the landlord had entered illegally? Knowing the landlord was not licensed via RSW to do so?

Today I have been told that the landlord has stated they entered the property because they could smell rotting food that was in a food bin? INCORRECT! There was no bin left inside the flat before I went to stay with my mother. So you can smell rotting food from inside a fridge, outside the kitchen, down the hallway, down the stairs that turn to the left and go down again and out the front door? I think the fuck not!! I have evidence of everything I left inside the flat that belonged to me which was my whole entire life basically.

Olivia Louise Ltd state that the landlord left my property with Taff Housing, where I used to work before my illness got worse? LIES AGAIN!! The whole company has been on furlough and nobody that has been present has seen the landlord or corresponded with Olivia Louise Ltd or the landlord in regards to my property!! So now this is theft and handling of stolen goods matter! The police advised I would have to take them to a civil court and I shall do, and I shall win!! They have gone against the government guidelines during the COVID 19 pandemic and before the section 21 notice ended without my permission. Entered the property where I was still the legal tenant, changed the locks, stole all my property, Lied about where my property is and how it was left and all without ANY PHOTOGRAPHIC EVIDENCE OR EMAIL CORRESPONDENCE TO BACK UP THEIR CLAIMS!! I was also told a notice was stuck to my door to collect my belongings within 14 days, INCORRECT! as neighbour’s and family that passed the property stated was never there, and also would not have been possible during current lockdown restrictions of over a 5-mile radius and before that not allowing anybody to leave their homes unless for work or essentials. A notice to collect would have only been able to have been placed if after the notice ended I did not collect my belongings from the property. I DO NOT RECOMMEND OLIVIA LOUISE LTD, CANTON AND I DO NOT RECOMMEND RUTH COLLISHAW! These people are highly unprofessional, dodgy, and will see me in court!

Rent: 500

Deposit returned?: Didn’t have one

John Winter

🎶Ollie, you are what they say you are, you’re a superstar!🎶

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John Winter is outstanding! Any problems are solved straight away with no questions asked or having to worry about paying for damages. They treat you like adults unlike most agencies, very easy to contact and they’re always making effort to keep the house up to scratch. The gardener comes round regularly to maintain the garden and they send people round to do things like ensuring the electric is working. [This is, in fact, a legal requirement] Ollie is a superstar who keeps everything under control.

Rent: £370

Deposit returned?: Didn’t have one

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I think Yazi confused students for sardines. He packs them in the same way.

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Review for Yazdan (Yazi) Kayhanian Just google him and you’ll quickly get a feel for his unsavoury character and ineptness.  These flats have failed so many basic requirements and have an extremely shoddy finish (I doubt the electrician was qualified). Yazi is the definition of a cowboy landlord. Highly doubt the flats meet fire safety requirements – evident from the ridiculously thin walls. Yet to receive our deposit back on this ludicrously overpriced hell hole. There was also a worryingly overcrowded property within this complex.

https://www.southwalesargus.co.uk/news/4601168.teacher-failed-to-list-theft-convictions/

https://theehp.com/2012/11/05/housing-cardiff-landlord-fined-for-management-breaches/

Rent: £400

Deposit Returned?: Maybe Someday