Information for Customers
FBM Estate Agents is the longest established agency in SW Wales, and the satisfaction of our customers is of paramount importance to the Firm. Whilst we aim to provide the highest standards of service to all our customers, we recognise that sometimes things go wrong. We therefore have a complaints procedure to ensure that your interests are safeguarded. The aim of this process is to resolve any issues or concerns as quickly as possible, to the satisfaction of everybody involved.
In the majority of cases we expect that complaints are immediately resolved at branch level, without the necessity of using this formal procedure.
Throughout this document, we consider email correspondence to be “in writing”, unless otherwise specifically stipulated.
All complaints should, in the first instance, be directed to the Manager of the branch or department you have been dealing with. At this stage your complaint may be verbal or written. A record will be made of your complaint, and if it is not possible to deal with it immediately, a response will be sent within three working days.
If the complaint is about the branch or department manager, the complaint should be made to the Director responsible for the branch instead.
We expect that most problems will be resolved it this point. If however, you remain dissatisfied, you may then further your complaint, and invoke our formal complaint procedure.
Stage One – Director Review
Your formal complaint must be made in writing, and sent to the Director responsible for the Branch or department in question. You must write within one month of receiving the branch manager’s response, which will have included the appropriate Director’s name and contact details.
You may, if you wish, ask someone else to handle your complaint on your behalf. If this is the case, we will deal with your representative instead.
The letter/email of complaint must state (a) details of the complaint giving as much detail as possible; (b) losses, damages, inconvenience, and so forth incurred; and (c) what you want FBM to do in order to resolve the matter. Please enclose any evidence you wish to be considered, or which will help to clarify anything.
Your complaint will be acknowledged within three working days, and you will be provided with a full written response within 15 working days of receipt. If, in exceptional cases, it is not possible to complete the investigation and to respond within this timescale, you will be sent an update, stating when your response will be completed.
Your complaint will be properly and independently investigated, and full consideration will be given to all the points made in your letter of complaint. A complaint handler may undertake some of this work. You will be sent a full report of the findings, and if your complaint is established to be well founded, you will be offered an appropriate settlement.
Stage Two - Appeal
In the case that the stage one outcome fails to fulfil your expectations, or if you remain dissatisfied, an appeal may be lodged. You may address your concerns by writing to the Company (registered office address) within one month from receiving the stage one response. You must state why you disagree with the findings, for example what has been overlooked, is unreasonable, or what further action should be taken in order to resolve the complaint. Please note that no new complaint matter can be considered at this stage because it should have been included for investigation at stage one.
Your letter will be acknowledged within three working days and you will be provided with a final written response on behalf of the Company within 15 working days of receipt of your letter. If, in exceptional cases, it is not possible to complete the appeal within this timescale, you will be sent an update, stating when the appeal is expected to be completed.
A speedy, separate and detached review of the complaint will be made by staff not directly involved in the transaction, usually by another Director, but an impartial reviewer may be instructed. You will be sent you a full report of the findings, and if your appeal is upheld, this will include a review of the settlement offer.
Stage Three – The Property Ombudsman
The Property Ombudsman (TPO) scheme has been providing consumers and property agents with an alternative dispute resolution service for many years and provides consumers with a free, impartial and independent alternative dispute resolution service.
As a member, this complaints procedure fully complies with TPO code of practice. We expect all complaints to have been resolved at this point, but for cases where this has not been possible, the TPO scheme is recommended as a route to finally settle a complaint. Although not binding on the complainant, FBM will comply with the TPO findings.
Details of TPO service can be found on their website: www.tpos.co.uk.
Telephone: 01722 333306.
Address:The Property Ombudsman Ltd, Milford House
43-55 Milford Street, Salisbury, Wiltshire. SP1 2BP
The service must be instigated within 12 months of receipt of the final appeal letter (“Final Viewpoint”) from FBM.