An estate agent has been accused of charging prospective clients to view a property.
The claim has been made on Twitter by a journalist, Jem Collins, who is editor and director of journalism trade service Journo Resources.
Collins says in a tweet: “A house around the corner is for sale with a sign up saying ‘viewings £5pp, cash only, payable in advance’. Seriously lads, you are not a theme park.”
Estate Agent Today has emailed Collins, asking the identity of the agency concerned, the location of the property and to confirm whether it was for sale or to let. EAT has so far not received a response.
One social media reply to the tweet has suggested that such an act by an agent would contravene the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations, which make it clear that sellers or their representatives should not place a prospective customer under undue pressure.
Collins’ allegation - which has also appeared in the Grazia magazine - comes as both the rental and sales markets continue to operate at fever pitch.
If EAT can obtain more information on this allegation, it will appear here - so please check back.
Three years ago a BBC investigation claimed a letting agent was charging tenants as much as £300 just to view a property.
The Victoria Derbyshire programme interviewed prospective tenants who said they were told to pay refundable deposits - although they allegedly could not always get the money refunded.
The agency in question said it made clear the deposits were non-refundable, and stated this on receipts given to prospective tenants.