“ Estate Agents - Contact: 18 Hagley Road / Halesowen / West Midlands B63 4RG / Tel: 0121 550 5400 „
Lex Allan and Grove are an estate agents and letting agents in the West Midlands. I have always known of their presence and they always seemed like a firm you could rely on, as their boards outside houses are a common sight. So when I saw a flat advertised by them, I saw no reason to hesitate. They have an office in Stourbridge and an office in Halesowen.
I'm sure everyone can relate to how stressful a move can be... Lex Allan and Grove are honestly the worst and most unprofessional letting agents that I have ever had the misfortune to deal with. My lease on my flat came to an end, and looking to move anyway, saw a lovely looking flat, in my price range and in walking distance of my family. Meeting almost every requirement on my wish-list, I looked round it and went for it there and then on the spot.
I told the agent who showed me round that I would go for it. Their admin assistant had emailed me the application form when I booked the viewing, I had the forms and a cheque for the credit and background checks ready at their head office in Stourbridge when they opened, in order to be first in the queue for the flat.
All seemed well, and one of the letting agents actually said: "so when do you want to move in?" and then told me to just call them on a certain day when they had run my details past the landlord for a confirmed yes. I called them, as promised and I was told that I had been unsuccessful. I questioned this, and was given an answer of "Your credit check for yourself and your husband both came out too low, and the landlords insurance would not cover a tenancy to you". This sounded like absolute rubbish to me.
So... I contacted Experian and acquired my credit check and that of my husband. At this point, I was actually feeling ill to the pit of my stomach to think that my credit rating was horrendous. So you can imagine my confusion at finding out that my credit rating was excellent and so was my husbands!
I phoned Lex Allan back straight away, outlining the reason I had been given, and that I had downloaded my own rating and seen that Lex Allan had indeed carried out a credit check and could not have seen a different rating to me. I pointed out that if they were refusing tenants with an excellent credit rating, then they were not exactly appealing to the people who need to rent such as myself i.e. people who hold a steady job and are trying to get a house deposit together!
I was told that the agent who was dealing with the property in question, was out of the office and would contact me at a certain time. That time came and went. I called back and she was "not in the office". For a week continuously. I emailed the office and pointed out this and got nowhere.
After having to spend time being messed about by Lex Allan, I was unable to continue flat hunting as I needed to give my current letting agent an answer as to whether I was staying or going, which meant another 6 month tenancy.
By the time my next tenancy ended, I found a lovely flat, with a smaller, less well known letting agent. When they realised I was concerned about the application process, and I told them all about the sorry saga I had encountered, I was met with "Oh we know what they do, they take all applications and give them to the landlord to chose which tenant they want". I was absolutely aghast to hear this, although it restored my confidence in my ability to take care of my own financial matters and keep a good credit history!
You know what? If Lex Allan had actually given me this information of how they chose a tenant, I wouldn't have even minded! But to lie to me (and even worse, to lie to me about something I can check myself!!) was entirely unprofessional. I would strongly advise caution before having any form of dealing with this letting agent.