It was a quiet first quarter this year for sanctions at The Property Ombudsman (TPO).
The redress scheme has revealed that just one agent was excluded between January and March 2022.
The excluded agent is Legra Homes Ltd (formerly Abode Real Estate Limited), an online sales agent based in Southend-on-Sea, Essex.
TPO said a potential buyer complained that there was a substantial delay in their commitment fee being returned after the seller withdrew from the proposed sale.
Legra Homes Ltd did not deny being aware of the seller pulling out and did not return the fee immediately, according to TPO’s investigation.
The agent did not provide their company file to TPO, which meant the Ombudsman was unable to determine what instructions were given when taking the commitment deposit.
Without agreed terms in writing, the Ombudsman supported the complaint and awarded £250 in compensation, in addition to the full deposit being refunded.
Legra Homes Ltd failed to pay the award made and was therefore referred to the scheme’s independent Compliance Committee, which ruled that it should be excluded from The Property Ombudsman scheme.
The company appears to no longer be trading, according to TPO.
It says all emails bounce back and Google states that it’s permanently closed.
There are no active listings on Zoopla, Rightmove or Onthemarket.
Companies House data also shows its latest accounts are late.
Another agency run by the same company director, Jack Blows, called Coastal Homes LOS Ltd was also expelled by the Property Redress Scheme last month.