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Holding fee for a flat

I paid a holding fee on a flat, but the agent rented it to someone else and only let me know the day I was supposed to move in (weeks after they had rented it to the other people). Can they legally do that? As soon as I paid, I got an email confirming the full address, my move in date and that they have taken the property off the market while doing the referencing. Their explanation was that they have "allocated" me another flat in the building (they never informed me of that before), which is not available as the current tenants are refusing to move out (I have reasons to believe that this is not true). They insisted that the landlord refused to let the flat to me due to my move in date (the date was agreed when I paid the holding fee and confirmed by the agency in the receipt email; again, I was never informed the landlord would not rent to me). I got a refund, but no compensation for what I spent with 3rd parties. Also I'm in the position of becoming homeless now. Can I sue them?

Asked on Sep 12 2016, Renting in Manchester | Report content

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