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Aaaaaaaaaggghh - The Scream Thread!


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#19711 mel2

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Posted 18 March 2019 - 10:55

I have rarely reached such levels of impotent fury as when I had to provide all sorts of personal financial details and photo-id as assurance to the (entirely foreign named -very un-pc of me but there it is) agents of a grotty flat my son wished to rent in Scarborough.
I sincerely hope my details were erased when he ended his tenancy and bought a house.
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#19712 elemimele

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Posted 18 March 2019 - 11:48

There are, it's true, good letting agents, but there are lots and lots of completely rubbish letting agents. There are also truly awful landlords, and there are situations where a possibly decent letting agent has had his/her hands tied by a rubbish landlord and is therefore doing a terrible job. Amongst the star letting agents I've come across are:

(1) the letting agent approached by friend "A", in search of a non-basement flat. Letting agent forced "A" to pay a fee to "join" the agency, and only then told them that the only flat they had was in a basement. Sell what you don't have...

(2) the letting agent approached by friend "B" who told them that another tenant was keen on their flat, but they could have it if they agreed to redecorate at their own expense. "B" moved in, redecorated, and a month later was given notice to quit. Everyone else in the building had already been given notice to quit before B moved in, because, unbeknownst to "B", the landlady had already decided to sell. Landlady was letting agent's mum.

(3) the letting agent who offered a room in a shared house, to friend "C"; room was the cupboard under the stairs, equipped with a small mattress and a light bulb.

For pure weirdness, long-remembered:

(4) Landlady of friend "D", who wouldn't let male friends into the house, and made "D" spend her evenings reading horrible novels written by landlady, in which men were killed in particularly unpleasant ways. None ever published. She was a strange and unpleasant lady.

On the other side of the coin, earning eternal favourable memory:

(5) the letting agent who realised that friend "E" had absolutely no cash, and agreed to let to them a flat that had been totally trashed by the previous occupant (who'd been arrested for misusing the premises for immoral purposes). Letting agent agreed a ridiculously low rent, "E" rescued the flat, renovated and made it beautiful, and letting agent + landlord left the rent stupidly low for many, many years, in recognition of E's effort, even though they could have re-let at a vastly increased rate at the drop of a hat.

There are good agents out there, they're just hard to find.


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#19713 Banjogirl

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Posted 18 March 2019 - 12:45

And the trouble is, as the tenant, you have no say over who the agent is. If you want a flat you have no choice but to go with whoever the landlord has picked
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#19714 ejw21

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Posted 18 March 2019 - 13:36

All very true. My last renting experiences were with a reasonable agent - not amazing but generally competent - and OH and I did ignore some properties because of the awful online reviews of the letting agents involved. We had that luxury because of where we live but I know in a lot of places the demand is so high that this isn't an option. Thankfully no longer renting. 


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#19715 Banjogirl

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Posted 18 March 2019 - 18:06

Just had to call the agency, who were lovely on the phone. The man I spoke to on the phone was really helpful. But the Boy is currently filling in a form (online, so nowhere to put any notes) which is totally unsuited to a student let. I'm sure it'll work out fine but it's such a hassle because they haven't set it up properly. He's being asked questions he can't answer because they relate to a working person, but because the form is online you can't leave it blank or write in an explanation.
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#19716 Vicky Violin

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Posted 18 March 2019 - 18:12

wow, I haven't rented for a while (I bought my current place 13 years ago) but before then I rented various places through various agents for many years and never had a problem - I now realise how lucky I must have been.  I had one landlady who was a bit strange and suddenly asked me to leave at short notice. It was somewhat inconvenient as I had exams coming up but nothing too terrible.  Although, norms seem to have changed since I last rented - it wasn't usual to pay any kind of fee to the agent and the documents / references required weren't particularly onerous.  We did lose our deposit once - we had agreed to rent somewhere and then changed our mind - it was annoying to lose the deposit but not unreasonable in the circumstances.


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#19717 Ligneo Fistula

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Posted 19 March 2019 - 11:05

There is a glimmer of hope on the horizon for people looking to rent: The Tenant Fees Bill received royal assent and the Act will come in to force on 1st June 2019, banning the sometimes extortionate 'admin' fees applied by letting agents and landlords.


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#19718 Ligneo Fistula

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Posted 19 March 2019 - 11:23

I made the fatal error, last night, of somehow ending up watching YouTube videos of musicians at tiny fractions of my age playing ridiculously difficult pieces faultlessly, especially the violinists.  Then I read that the 'cellist who won the BBC YM prize a few years ago started 'cello at 6yo yet passed his grade 8 at only 9yo with the highest mark in the UK!

 

Suffice to say I woke up this morning feeling supremely self-sorry wondering why I am even bothering, struggling miserably through basic grade 3 pieces at my old age, when I will never come close to grade 8 standard never mind anything beyond.

 

Arghhh!


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#19719 zwhe

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Posted 19 March 2019 - 11:46

I made the fatal error, last night, of somehow ending up watching YouTube videos of musicians at tiny fractions of my age playing ridiculously difficult pieces faultlessly, especially the violinists.  Then I read that the 'cellist who won the BBC YM prize a few years ago started 'cello at 6yo yet passed his grade 8 at only 9yo with the highest mark in the UK!

 

Suffice to say I woke up this morning feeling supremely self-sorry wondering why I am even bothering, struggling miserably through basic grade 3 pieces at my old age, when I will never come close to grade 8 standard never mind anything beyond.

 

Arghhh!

There is nothing wrong with being normal!

Even if you do never reach grade 8, that isn't a problem (unless you are planning on making a living from your playing!). Grade 3 piano is about two thirds of the way to grade 5. By grade 5 you will be able to have a go at so much beautiful music, that it probably won't bother you so much any more. The early grades can be difficult to get through, but it is worth it. Just enjoy the music, and try not to compare yourself to the 'Mozarts'.


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#19720 Cyrilla

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Posted 20 March 2019 - 00:32

A good friend said to me the other day, 'comparisons are odious'.   It was what I needed to hear at the time and I think she's very right.

 

:)


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#19721 Cyrilla

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Posted 21 March 2019 - 23:28

Oh my.   Too many big and worrying things going on.

 

I really MUST think of the Hubble telescope picture that shows the Earth as a minute blue dot amongst a zillion other dots...

 

:(


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#19722 Tenor Viol

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Posted 22 March 2019 - 19:26

Agree comparisons are odious. I'm 59 and a so-so cellist, but I get to play in various groups. Could I be better? Yes. Could I be worse? Yes. Until such a time as I have the time and space to do a lot more practice, it is what it is and there's no point in worrying about it. (Says the person who worries about stuff....)


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#19723 Maizie

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 15:31

Visti website of well-known retailer.  OK, you twisted my arm, John Lewis.

I have an account registered under an email address that is going to go away at the end of this month.  I go to the my details section of the account pages, where the box with the email address in is greyed out and uneditable.  Underneath, it straightfowardly states "If you need to change your email address, please call us on [number]".

I phone them.  Lady on the phone tells me she can't do access anything account-specific and I have to do that online.  I read her what it says on my screen.  She can go no further and says the best she can do is give me the number for MyJohnLewis (loyalty card thing) and see if they can help.  I don't phone them, because it's totally not their issue and the last thing I want is further confusion.

Instead, I go to the online contact form and send in my query.  To which I got a very speedy response saying "Go to your account, my details section, and you can update your email address there".

I've sent them an equally speedy response with a screen shot and (probably far too many) capital letters pointing out that their instruction is simple enough for me to follow but completely impossible to do.

(Just tried a different browser, same thing)


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#19724 Hedgehog

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 16:36

Visti website of well-known retailer.  OK, you twisted my arm, John Lewis.

I have an account registered under an email address that is going to go away at the end of this month.  I go to the my details section of the account pages, where the box with the email address in is greyed out and uneditable.  Underneath, it straightfowardly states "If you need to change your email address, please call us on [number]".

I phone them.  Lady on the phone tells me she can't do access anything account-specific and I have to do that online.  I read her what it says on my screen.  She can go no further and says the best she can do is give me the number for MyJohnLewis (loyalty card thing) and see if they can help.  I don't phone them, because it's totally not their issue and the last thing I want is further confusion.

Instead, I go to the online contact form and send in my query.  To which I got a very speedy response saying "Go to your account, my details section, and you can update your email address there".

I've sent them an equally speedy response with a screen shot and (probably far too many) capital letters pointing out that their instruction is simple enough for me to follow but completely impossible to do.

(Just tried a different browser, same thing)

Well done Maizie.

In a similar vein, but rather different situation - I went mad a week or so ago and ordered about 10 different things from 5 companies. I did it at that time because I want them all to arrive before we go on holiday in a couple of weeks time (from now). Thank goodness I did - how many items are on back order. A couple of orders came minus an item, so instead of emailing (these are small one-man companies) I've phoned them on the basis that I'll get a more instant answer rather than being one of 100 emails they've received that day.

Good luck with John Lewis. Let us know how you get on.  I do think John Lewis needs to improve its internal communications.


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#19725 Maizie

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 16:55

Their next suggestion was that I go to the log in page, enter my new email address, and then select forgotten password to do a password reset.

Unsurprisingly, this achieved nothing because there is no account associated with my new email address, so there was no password to reset.  I did a password reset on my existing account, in case this magically made the email address box editable, lo and behold it did not.

The next email exchange they've caved and said 'Please let us know the email address you would like it changed to, and we will sort it out'.  I won't hold my breath, but I'm pretty sure it's the only solution to a box I can't edit which tells me to speak to customer service to get it changed!

 

Funny part is the email address change has been on the cards for over a year.  I've changed it everywhere else (that was a very long, dull Saturday...)  I just kept putting this one off and off and off and off in the hope that they would update the website so I could edit it myself and not have to phone anyone.  Now I need to order something and I want it under the new address because there's only 9 days left on the old one!


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