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Acenden: lender’s responsibility for personal goods in property after eviction?

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This is my first post here so I've tried not to witter on, but it's complicated.


The situation is that I was evicted from my home last year when I couldn’t remortgage it after the interest-only mortgage expired.

The circumstances don’t matter, I have no quarrel with that.


My query relates to what came after.

I had managed to dispose of a lot of stuff I didn’t want, but there was still a lot of stuff I did want, left in the property.


I’m past retirement age, live alone, and am severely disabled: I cannot legally walk, I have severe spinal problems and a max award of DLA. Acenden have known this since the beginning of the proceedings.


They refused me entry back into the house to deal with my property, despite my undertaking to comply with whatever conditions they imposed.


They arranged for all my stuff to be packed up and moved into storage, and I’ve paid all the moving fees and a year’s storage costs.


Because of my disabilities I was completely unable to inspect my property while it was in storage; even getting to the chosen storage facility was beyond me unless I had substantial help which wasn’t available.


When I eventually unpacked everything in my new home, which has taken me the four months since I moved in,


I’ve seen that the packaging was very poor, no attempt was made to protect any of my property, a box that had contained glassware and china was full of smashed and dangerous pieces of glass and porcelain; glazed pictures were simply stuffed into inadequate cardboard boxes, the frames mangled beyond recognition and the glass fronts all smashed.


Other of my stuff had been so badly damaged as to be made useless and needed replacing (e.g. tumble drier), a long list of other stuff, including a valuable listed edition print and expensive camera kit, has been stolen.


I’ve photographed everything that’s been damaged clearly showing the damage, and recording the very poor quality packaging and careless packing.


Acenden also suggested to me that they could arrange disposal of stuff I didn’t want before the rest of my stuff was packed up, to which I agreed, provided a list, and their initiative and my agreement and identification of that property are evidenced by email exchanges. They didn’t follow through on the agreement, and I’ve spent removal and a year’s storage costs for their broken promise.


Acenden took four months before they even put the house on the market.


I have other complaints but my question here, is

what is Acenden’s legal liability for the theft of and damage to my property that’s happened while it’s been in their custody.


To say that the removers were negligent is an understatement, but I didn’t have a contract with them, Acenden did.


I know I need to see a lawyer, but I’m just hoping to get a view here as the first appointment I can get is two weeks away.


To say I’m very angry is putting it mildly.

I’ve spoken to my insurers – fortunately I have contents insurance that will cover a claim provided I exhaust Acenden’s complaints procedures before I start that claim.


Do Acenden have any liability to me for my loss, which amounts to over £10,000 on current replacement values?


Thank you for any feedback.



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does your insurance have legal cover? many do so have a look or ask them

As for liabity well yes they do to a certain extent and so do the people they employed to do the packing and shifting. Were they a professional removers will full insurance?

Your claim may well be against both parties as being jointly liable but I would be asking the shifters for an insurance claim form for the damaged goods first and if they refer you to someone else as being the person who contracted them then you go after their insurance. You may end up naming 4 parties ( including their insurance co) so fnd out exactly what is missing and what is damaged, work out a bill for the both and let the shifters know you will be after them for their negligence and Acenden for both the lost/destroyed items and also jointly for the broken stuff.


You should also look carefully at Acenden's charges as I would think that they will contain an awful lot of add ons that cant be justified. This should be dealt with as a separate issue but at the same time so they will find it harder to ignore you

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Many thanks for your reply, it's very helpful. A lot of the stuff that's been stolen is the kind of thing you buy when you need it and bin the receipts, not big purchases like the wrecked tumble drier, that you keep the receipts for in case problems arise, so I'm having to trawl through my bank statements and all the receipts for online purchases to help prove that I actually bought these things. Being disabled I shop online for nearly everything, and being able to prove my account history in various places (Amazon especially) is going to be useful. I do banking online and have years of statements available to help prove purchases even though I don't have the receipts any more. Then there's all the PDF receipts for purchases I save to computer when I buy something. I'll be searching backups for quite a while.


Yes, I do have legal insurance that covers this; the insurance company have said that I need to exhaust Acenden's complaints procedures before the insurance will kick in, which I knew anyway. The courts won't let me start an action until I've done that. I have a copy of the Consumer Survivial Handbook which reminded me to record phone calls. I'm planning on dealing with this by letter/email so I have a paper trail but beiing able to record phone calls if I need to is reassuring.


You've given me more to think about, thank you. This is going to be long and tedious. I don't live in the same county now, and am wondering whether I should involve the police at this stage. Maybe when I get all this together and write to Acenden, and the removal company, I'll raise a police complaint as a possibility.


I'll go through Acenden's charges; I've already identified something in the sale completion statement that doesn't make sense to me and is a significant amount of money.


There's lot to think about and searching computer files to be done, and my health has been badly affected by all this, but I'm encouraged that I can do something about this.


Thank you again.



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the police wont be interested because for theft or criminal damage the action must be deliberate and have intent. So theft is the taking of goods with the INTENT of permanently depriving you of them. Now on top of that statement the accused can show what they call reasonable belief so if they held an honest view that they had the right to chuck stuff away then it isnt a criminal matter, just a common law tort- ie done you a wrong so you can sue them for your losses

Acenden will ahve charged you absolute fortunes over the term of the loan in charges that are recoverable so send them a SAR and start finding these charges and fees in your loan account statements and work out what they are in total, whether interest has bee added ( unlawful so reclaimable as well) and then write to them requesting a refund.

Many have, they like to make an offer at the court door when they know they are in for a kicking so in writing only.

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Thank you for suggesting a SAR. I've been thinking about that and what I should put in it, I didn't know whether to cover the entire seven years of the mortgage or just what happened since the eviction. You've made up my mind to request copies of the statements for the entire mortgage period, as I can't rely on all my paperwork being complete now, that went into storage as well.


I can't see how anyone could claim they intended to return my camera kit! After the eviction a removal company, different from the one that put my stuff into storage, was instructed to bring to me in my temporary accommodation, a list of what I needed there, and it specifically included my camera kit, listing everything that was in it, and where it was in the property. They said when they brought the rest of my stuff I'd asked for that it wasn't in the house. This was three weeks after the eviction. They confirmed this in writing. I think it's reasonable to assume that the intention of whoever appropriated it was to permanently deprive me of it. I hope so, anyway. I've confirmed that it's registered with Nikon with my name and the property address I was evicted from. I haven't had a chance to search all my historical files yet, the receipt could well be in there somewhere.


Acenden have two lists, the second one is the first with additional stuff on it, clearly marked as an update, of what I wanted delivered to me, and as far as possible, where it was in the house. Thank heavens for IMAP email. I have print copies and they're still there on the server. It's a paid account so as long as I don't go over my storage limit, they'll always be there. There can't be any confusion about the camera kit being thrown away, the equipment is obviously expensive, dSLR body, three lenses, flash, two chargers, accessories, good camera bag, all obviously new (about five months old) but only once used. It rankles, I'd better not use the language I think of Acenden in.


It's great advice, Ericsbrother, thank you very much, I appreciate it.

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EVERYTHING. You dont have to specify whay you want, they are obliged to send all they hold on you if you ask for it. Just makwe sure you word the letter so it is clear it is a SAR under the DPA and enclose a cq for a statutory tenner.


as for the camera, you ahve got it arse about face, they dont have to intned to return it, they can bin it of they have an honest belief they are entitled to. You need to read things carefully


Now, use thier complaints process the use your insurance legal peopel to bite them. I would think they are more likely to settle without going to court if they get a letterheaded demand from your insurers lawyers as they will have somehting to show their insurers. Us little peopel dont get results first time round because the companies dont ever belive that 1) you know anything and 2) you arent seriously going to sue them. When it dawms on them that these presumptions are wrong they will get moving

Edited by honeybee13
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