Customers of seven agents got false touting letters – admission

Your Move has once again apologised for sending out canvassing letters suggesting that other agents had closed down.

The firm is adamant that the letters were sent out as the result of an honest mistake.

It has now emerged that the letters were sent to 35 customers of seven agents in the Oldham area.

After Eye’s story appeared on Friday, concerning Ryder & Dutton – one of the agents affected – a second agent contacted us to say that they are taking legal advice.

Alan Kirkham, of Market Street, Shaw, Oldham, say that an apology will not suffice.

Vicky Carlton, office manager of the firm, said: “We are seeking legal advice because we will not accept an apology.

“In over 30 years of trading in the area, Alan Kirkham says he has never seen anything like this.

“We believe all five agents in Shaw have been affected, as well as in the wider area. We all received the same letter of apology from the area manager – but really it was quite insulting.

“We have had to tell everyone that we are not shutting and that it is a lie, and we have had some people coming into the office and saying: ‘Sorry to hear you’re closing down.’

“In our view, the canvassing letters also breach the Property Ombudsman’s rules updated on August 1 that say that such letters must not be unfair and must be truthful.”

A spokesperson for Your Move said: “Letters were delivered to 35 homes in two postcodes in and around Oldham, all of which were based on one ‘branch closed’ template used to canvass for business.

“They were printed and distributed in error alongside a quantity of similar looking letters – which did not make a claim about a closed branch – and  I would like to reiterate that there was no malicious intent whatsoever.

“In order to safeguard against cases of human error such as this, Your Move implements robust operating processes, including a rigorously updated canvassing log.

“This log has allowed us to identify when and to whom the letters were distributed.

“Once the matter was brought to our attention we apologised in writing to the local estate agencies affected and wrote to the vendors we canvassed.

“We also assured the local estate agencies affected that Your Move will not accept any instructions resulting from these customers.

“And we have removed the ‘branch closed’ letter template from our system to prevent it being used in error in the future.

“Once again we would like sincerely apologise for any inconveniences caused.”

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