False info given to us by motorhome hire company. What can we do?

Discussion in 'The Beginner' started by RosyRat, Aug 14, 2008.

  1. RosyRat

    RosyRat Deleted User

    This is the first time I've ever been on a motorhome forum and haven't yet set out in a motorhome. Please forgive my naivety, but I really need advice from the experts. We've hired a motorhome from a company who operate on the internet and seemed to be very well known and very big. We wanted to hire a motorhome for a week, just to see what it was like, before making the big step of buying.
    We picked a motorhome off the site after looking for ages because we wanted 3 specific things : a bike rack, an oven and a fixed rear bed. The description on the website offered these things, as did the company manager when I phoned up.
    As soon as the deposit was taken from our account, things went wrong. We didn't get a booking form, receipt or confirmation. Then the remainder of the booking fee was taken : a total of £450 in all. Finally, after emails & phone calls, we received an emailed receipt and were told to send £400 to the owner of the motorhome and were given a name, address & phone no.
    We're due to pick up the vehicle in 2 days' time and have just discovered that there is no bike rack, the rear bed has to be made up by pulling out the seats in the lounge & the oven is an overhead microwave, which I can't reach.
    I'm so distressed I feel sick. What redress do we have? The terms & conditions state there are no refunds under any circumstance & I've signed the contract. If anyone can help, Id be so grateful
     
  2. Sweet Chariot

    Sweet Chariot Read Only Funster

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    Can you name the company.
     
  3. RosyRat

    RosyRat Deleted User

    Motorholme.co.uk Can you advise me Sweet Chariot?
     
  4. Geo

    Geo Trader - Funster

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    You also had terms and condition
    that they have clearly failed to meet
    We wanted 3 specific things : a bike rack, an oven and a fixed rear bed. The description on the website offered these things,
    Did you put your requests in writing if not you will have an up hill struggle
    you have limited options now
    How did you pay if by credit card (always a good move) complain to them and ask for a refund on the ground goods were not supplied
    Ask Hirer for full refund
    sue Hirer for full refund
    your biggest problem is you have made a split payment.and now have two front lines to fight--- Why

    Geo
     
  5. New Rover

    New Rover Read Only Funster

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    I know it isn't much help but you should really have got everything in writing including the Vehicle Registration No.
    These firms will always try to get away with things like this unless the Motorhome fraternity stick together and name and shame them.
    As Sweet Charity has asked, Can you name the company so we can steer intending customers away from them.:Sad:

    Just seen that you have named them now.
     
  6. RosyRat

    RosyRat Deleted User

    Their terms are that you choose a motorhome from their website, where you get full details of the vehicle, how it is laid out, dimersions etc. As this is an internet business, there is no correspondence. There were a series of emails between the company manager and ourselves, including a statement by her that all details of individual homes could be found on the website. The description provided of the motorhome we chose clearly states : ""The Miller Nevada represents ttrue luxury in a 4 berth camper...equipped with TV & DVD player, fully integrated kitchen, oven...and 2 comfy beds. Self contained the Nevada motorhome incorporates a fixed rear double bed. Awning and bike rack fitted." Btw there is no DVD player either.
    We sent details of our debit card and the money was taken out of our bank account.
    We've had problems all down the line communicating with this company. Never, ever, ever again. What should have been an adventure has turned very sour. Thank you all for your advice. If we ever think about motorhoming again, and it will be a big if now, it's good to know that ther are people out there with experience who could help us avoid the traps and pitfalls that seem to be out there.
     
  7. Wildman

    Wildman Read Only Funster

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    Hi and welcome to the site, I am sure that despite a bad start you will enjoy the hobby. Having looked at the site and read your comments it would appear the company is only a referral company and do not own the vehicles they hire out. That being the case £450 booking fee and £400 hire fee should be sufficient to put owners from placing their vehicles with this company. Their claim to be the largest in the UK is purely that, their claim. Now back to your problem.
    If it is clear in your emails/letters etc from the company what you required and that is what they promised then they are in breach of contract. Nothing to do with the owners of the van unless their statements regarding the points you raised led the hire company to believe those things were there. In any case your contract is with the hire company. Providing you can prove they acknowledged and accepted your needs then you have a good case against then. A microwave is not an oven!! I hope you refused to take delivery and requested an immediate refund.Ports of call are credit card company, request a charge-back as goods supplied were no as ordered.
    Citizens Advice Bureau, Trading Standards, Solicitor. In that order. Good luck.

    Under terms and conditions I found the following.

    9. Availability
    While every effort is made to ensure that the vehicle reserved is available, if due to circumstances beyond our control, the reserved vehicle is not available, the company reserves the right to offer a suitable alternative. If this is not acceptable, the liability of Motorholme will be limited to the return of any monies paid by the hirer.



    If it was not suitable you should have refused to take delivery and claimed back monies paid. If you did not do so you are deemed to have accepted the default vehicle. then despite any promises may not have a leg to stand on. A trick one.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2008
  8. paul&stella

    paul&stella Read Only Funster

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    I have contacted Trading Standards on a wide variety of issues over the years and always found them an excellent source of information and advice - action too!
    Do hope this bad experience has not put you off owning a MH, theres always one bad apple in every walk of life, looks like you just picked the bad one this time, don't give up.
    We were going to hire a MH before buying, but instead decided to buy a cheaper model than we had originally chosen, just so we can try it out for a year or so before taking a bigger financial step.
     
  9. RosyRat

    RosyRat Deleted User

    Thank you paul&stella. I will contact Trading Standards. I should have been suspicious when I clicked on the "read what our customers say" link and found no customer comments later than 2006. We'd discussed buying a used motor home and looked at several, but decided this might be a good way of getting a flavour of what motorhoming is like, without committing ourselves to owning one, if we decided it wasn't for us. I can see now why people make the decision you did.

    At least I've found this forum and can come back once we've taken stock and come round a bit.
     
  10. ShiftZZ

    ShiftZZ Funster Life Member

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    Hi RosyRat

    Did you pay for the van using your credit card?

    It may be a good idea to contact them as they could be held jointy liable .

    Secondly, I have looked at this companies term and conditions, it could be that if you take then to court, the judge may find in your favour as the 'contract' may not be a fair contract i.e. the contract may well be or could be unfair.

    I suspect you need to contact the OFT or a solicitor.


    Regards

    ShiftZZ
     
  11. RosyRat

    RosyRat Deleted User

    Shiftzz
    Thanks for your reply. No, we don't have a credit card - paid by direct debit via their website. We'll get in touch with the Office of Fair Trading and get their advice, as you suggest. This must have happened to others, but there seems to be no way we can place a customer review on their website, even though they have some on there (as I said in my previous post, the last one was dated 2006).
    The problem is that they take the deposit before they let you know who the vehicle owners are and give you their contact details. The contract states that no monies, once paid are refundable, so they have you in a cleft stick. You either lose your £400 or you pay the rest and put up with a vehicle which doesn't meet the spec. The owners told me they'd explained to Motorholme before that the description of their vehicle on the website wasn't accurate, but they seem to have disregarded it. I've no way of knowing whether this is a one-off error or whether they do this to others.
     
  12. ShiftZZ

    ShiftZZ Funster Life Member

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    RostRat

    Interesting, that may be teh flaw in their contract.

    If they knew that they were not able to supply the goods as described , in this case wrongly and knowingly, they may well be in breach of the Theft Act 1968 or the Theft Act 1978 as obtaining a Pecuniary advantage or breach of the Sale of Goods Act.
    Do you know if you had hired the van that you ended up with, would it have been less expensive?

    I suspect that you need Legal advice.

    A tip for the future any purchase over £100 and less than £30k, pay by Credit Card.

    Good luck

    ShiftZZ
     
  13. passionwagon

    passionwagon Read Only Funster

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    :Eeek:You say debit card. This is not as good as credit card protection but all may not be lost as some banks can pull the debit card monies back from a supplier-go and see your bank tomorrow and insist they do this.:Angry:
     
  14. Johns_Cross_Motorhomes

    Johns_Cross_Motorhomes Trader - Motorhome & Accessory Sales

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    Sounds very much like misrepresentation to me especially as the MH owner admits that the details are not correct on the website.

    Suggest you contact your Bank in writing that no further debits may be taken from your account by this Company, just in case.

    Good luck

    Peter
     
  15. Adria 5

    Adria 5 Read Only Funster

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    hi rosyrat have contacted the said company and what do they say? also have you informed them its on a open i/net motorhome forum thay dont like bad press:Wink:
    i would like to hear from the company if they where anything like a proper company you have your money back pronto !!! best of luck keep the forum informed

    ray
     
  16. Patrick49

    Patrick49 Deleted User

    I don't know, I find all this rather strange - wouldn't the sensible thing have been to contact the company straight away? How can they sort it out if you don't speak to them?
     
  17. Rapide561

    Rapide561 Read Only Funster

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    Motorholme

    Hi

    A bit of background.....

    As far as I know, Motorholme hire out motorhomes owned by people like you and me. They get the bookings and take a fee etc. The hirer will collect the motorhome from your house etc and you do the handover.

    The firm may own some vans of their own - I do not know.

    I contacted them a couple of years ago with a view to hiring out my Compass, but I decided against it.

    Another hire firm - that also uses privately owned vans - actually posted photos of my Kontiki on their website, even though I had no connection with them at all.

    Anyway try 01954 718750 as a contact for Motorholme.

    Russell
     
  18. Bulletguy

    Bulletguy Read Only Funster

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    Most definately a case for Trading Standards to intervene. From what you describe they have blatantly mis-led you in their advertising description and charged you for something they cannot or do not supply.

    Before seeking legal advice i would first let your local Trading Standards officer try to resolve the issue by either forcing the company to meet their written obligations...or if they cannot do that, then refunding your money in full.

    Either way it looks likely this company will face possible prosecution even if they do refund you.

    I've seen one of these types of 'contracts' before stating "no refunds under any circumstances", and possibly like yourself i also made the mistake of not reading through the small print before signing. These so called 'contracts' are drawn up by con merchants and aren't even worth the paper they are written on. My ignornance ended up costing me thousands as the business involved went bankrupt and despite getting a CCJ against them (waste of my time and waste of more money), i never got anywhere.

    It's a hard lesson to learn.....but it taught me to read through every other contract since. If i ever see "no refunds under any circs".....then i simply walk away and take my money elsewhere.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2008
  19. Afansmum

    Afansmum Read Only Funster

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    Motorhome Hire

    Hi everyone

    I have read all the messages posted by RosyRat and the replies with great interest - as I am the owner of this particular motorhome!!

    We have had our motorhome since last september and thought this summer we would try hiring it out to help pay for its running expenses. We have been with Motorholme since earlier this year and they have arranged 3 sets of hire for us. The first hirers arrived with 2 dogs in tow. They had specifically requested a motorhome that would allow dogs, but Motorholme had never mentioned this to us! As we have 2 dogs of our own, we were not too bothered, and they seemed like responsible dog owners. These hirers had come all the way from Eire - what would they have done if we had said no to their dogs?? They were also expecting to arrive at some huge motorhome depot, and they were surprised to arrive at our house in a little Welsh village.

    Our experience with Motorholme has shown us that communication with them is appalling, they don't send out paperwork to hirers until the last minute, we are kept in the dark about hirers and they do not appear to take any notice of our requests to make the description of our motorhome on their website more accurate and honest. The photo on the website must be some kind of stock picture, it isn't our motorhome!
     
  20. Wildman

    Wildman Read Only Funster

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    Welcome to the site, I assume you will be withdrawing your van from their services. One expects to be treated as a valued part of a reputable business. There is a hire section on this site, only recently added, why not be the first to list your van.
     
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