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Graham Awards


Letting agent “illegally working” without redress scheme membership

The Daily Mail says it has informed Trading Standards of a lettings agent which is claims is “illegally working” despite not being a member of a redress scheme.

And the publication has run an extensive article on the agent’s seemingly-flamboyant lifestyle while his Oldham-based company is phasing the payment of money owed to a landlord.

“David Walters, 39, was ordered by a judge to pay more than £20,000 to homeowner Amy Trumpeter after pocketing her rent and leaving her house in Oldham with furniture missing and its roof fallen in after failing to carry out repairs” says the Mail Online article.


It says that Walters - “who lives in a £449,000 four-bedroom house in a sought-after Pennines village” - is repaying Trumpeter just £100 a month, which means the money owed would take over 15 years to be fully repaid.

The Mail Online goes on to say that since the court case which agreed the staggered payments - apparently because of the agency’s inability to pay the full amount owed - Walters has shared social media images of his trips to Marbella, Cancun and Zante.

The Mail says: “Ms Trumpeter first hired Mr Walters and his company Lettings4All in 2015 to look after her three-bedroom house in Oldham while she moved to Oxford for work. In addition to finding tenants he also agreed to carry out a series of repairs.

“'We agreed a list of work that needed doing - things like decorating, new carpets, general maintenance and repairs' she said. 

“‘I agreed to that and he sent me some photos of works being carried and said ‘'don't worry, I've got a tenant in already”. 

“‘I thought it was strange that he had managed to turn it around in just two weeks but otherwise felt happy.'

“Ms Trumpeter's suspicions grew when Mr Walters failed to send rent payments, claiming that he needed the money to pay for additional work.

“After several months she was then contacted by the tenant on Facebook, who was complaining about the poor state of the property.”

After substantial discussions and time elapsed, the landlord reported Walters to the Property Redress Scheme, which found that he had to pay back £5,575 in rent and a further £6,425 for repairs he had been paid for but not carried out plus extra compensation.

However he failed to pay this amount and was expelled by the PRS.

Walters had been contacted by the Mail for comment but had not responded at the time of the article’s publication. 

Letting Agent Today has attempted to contact Walters but the agency’s website and Facebook page appear disabled.

You can see the Mail’s article in full here.

  • Kristjan Byfield

    When an agent is expelled, or their 'membership' expires, at any of the Redress Schemes this should surely trigger an instant notification to NTSELAT to investigate what Scheme they have moved on to and, if they haven't, take immediate action to prevent them trading until they are compliant. We have a myriad of reg's but little to no enforcement- leading to articles like this which continues people's perception that agents are dodgy- rather than the fact enforcement (and government funding for that) is lacking.
    I reported a fraudulent agency (genuinely fraudulent fake agency operating under false company & people identities with fake listings) on 2nd February- their website remains active tob this day despite reporting to NTSELAT (and following up a week later) and reporting to Met Police fraud squad as well as the domain registrar. I shouldn't need to do anything further and such an operation should surely be shut down in 24-28 hours not still be operating 15 days later!


    Perhaps emailing your MP may get results. They can be surprisingly useful on occasion.

  • Karen  Flynn

    Dear Graham

    What about Letting Agents who fail to join any redress schemes and when they have been suspended by the Property Ombudsman merely change their company name and start again.
    I speak on behalf of a number of landlords&tenants who have had the misfortune to encounter such an agent and who has recently been investigated by Trading Standards. TS have uncovered evidence such as falsifying invoices but say they have run out of budget to go further than a legal warning(which has been sent)

    This individual is well known as a crook amongst all the agents in the town of Aylesbury and the complaints on the website All Agents go back over a decade. He has also appeared twice for his tricks in The Negotiator.
    His other favourite misdemeanours include;
    Keeping deposits in his personal bank account
    Refusing to do repairs (one resulted in injury and police were called)
    Falsifying invoices by photocopy and skimming money on top
    Fabricating invoices from non existent companies
    Not inspecting properties as per letting agreement
    Charging landlord and tenant for identical pictures
    Non payment and continual late payment of rent
    Avoiding landlords and tenants calls and communications and the refusing to put any discussions and agreements in writing
    I could go on

    Where are we to turn to outlaw this man who just trades in a ‘Trumpian’ manner ??
    Currently one of our members is awaiting two months rent from October. Another is actually celebrating his tenant leaving so he can rid himself of this Agent. The agent has continually refused to pay the rent on time after being paid promptly by the tenant.

    Be grateful for feedback
    Ps a year ago I submitted this to my MP with evidence and received no reply (as is his habit) Trading Standards have been disappointed after all their investigations they can’t keep going as they are dealing with covid scams.



    I agree with everything that Karen says. As one of his tenants, the workmanship was shoddy and not professional. The agent in question was happy for our belongings to be left insecure after the garage door fell on my Son's head.
    He is a crook, been taken off the register twice and had to fight for my deposit back despite the landlords given full permission for it to be returned in full.
    Had to call Police during outgoing inventory due to his behaviour and he even showed his temper on the phone to the Police call handler


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