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Complaints procedure

Housechoice Ltd

Updated 09 July 2021

If you do have a complaint about our company we want to hear about it and we will do our best to put it right. Our customer complaints procedure has the following goals:

  • To deal with complaints fairly, efficiently and effectively;
  • To ensure that all complaints are handled in a consistent manner throughout;
  • To increase customer satisfaction;
  • To use complaints constructively in the planning and improvement of all our products and services:
  • Ultimately, to ensure customers are left with a positive view of the company and would be happy to make another purchase from us in future.

HOW TO COMPLAIN

We would like to sort out any complaint as soon as possible. Most complaints can be resolved informally. In the first instance contact us on 01245 950933 and we will try to sort the matter out. We would strongly advise you to do this if the matter is urgent and where any delay could lead to damage of your property. If you make contact by phone, make a note of the name of the person you speak to. If a solution is offered at this point, make a note of this as well.

If you are not satisfied or do not wish to resolve matters informally, you may pursue a formal complaint. All formal complaints are dealt with in writing only so there is a full record of the matter.

Write down your complaint and send it to:

Compliance Department, Housechoice, Suite 109 Waterhouse Business Centre, 2 Cromar Way, Chelmsford, Essex CM1 2QE

Or email: support@housechoice.co.uk

Please provide us with as much detail as possible to help us assess your complaint including what outcome you are looking for. This will save us time and help us to resolve your complaint as quickly as possible.

WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?

We will provide acknowledgement of your complaint within 5 working days of receipt. You may be contacted to make sure that we have understood your complaint properly or to clarify any issue.

Our compliance team will investigate the matter thoroughly and may engage in written correspondence with you throughout the investigation process.

We will endeavour to resolve your complaint within 14 days of receipt, although most complaints will usually be resolved much quicker.

If we cannot resolve all aspects of your complaint, our final response will confirm you can contact our alternative dispute resolution (ADR) body – HIES/HICS – to take your complaint further if you wish. HIES/HICS will contact you within 48 hours of your call to take full details.

In all cases, a complaint will be given full and fair consideration.

CAN YOU TAKE YOUR COMPLAINT ELSEWHERE?

Yes. You can seek independent advice on your legal rights at any time in this process or contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Service below. However, we believe we can work out any problems with you directly without causing you any inconvenience.

If you are not entirely happy after receiving our final response then you are still entitled to contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Service or the ADR provider we advise you of. If your complaint relates to a finance agreement you can also contact the Financial Ombudsman Service. You must refer your complaint to the FOS within 6 months of receiving our final response or they may be unable to consider it.

Citizens Advice Consumer Service - Tel: 03454 040506

Financial Ombudsman Service - see further below

IF YOUR COMPLAINT RELATES TO A FINANCE AGREEMENT YOU HAVE ENTERED INTO THROUGH US

If you have obtained finance through our company and have a complaint relating to the finance product or the way in which it was sold, please follow the procedure below.                          

Any complaint verbal or written will be referred to our complaint’s department at the earliest opportunity. We will also

  • Acknowledge the complaint promptly
  • Record details on the firm’s system
  • Make contact to seek clarification on any points where necessary
  • Fully investigate the complaint
  • Keep you informed of our progress
  • Discuss with you our findings and proposed response
  • Ensure that our firm partners have a compliant complaints procedure and are communicating with their customer using this
  • Provide clear deadlines to respond

You will receive contact from us advising on progress if we cannot respond immediately. We will let you have our final response as soon as possible and not later than eight weeks.

You may express dissatisfaction about our products and services. We will need to establish whether or not the complaint relates to the information given, the company or the service and installation. If unclear, we will not delay our investigation.

Investigation

The complaints manager will establish the nature and scope of the complaint having due regards to the Financial Conduct Authority’s direction:

  • Deal with complaints promptly and fairly
  • Give complainants clear replies and, where appropriate, fair redress
  • We may take up to 8-weeks to provide a response

Eligible Complainants

It is the firm’s policy to treat all complainants the same, however, eligible complainants are legally defined and have additional rights in law that we must acknowledge and adhere to.

The Financial Conduct Authority complaints rules apply to complaints:

  • Made by, or on behalf of an eligible complainant.
  • Relating to regulated activity.
  • Involving an allegation that the complainant has suffered, or may suffer, financial loss, material distress or material inconvenience.

Final response

This will set out clearly our decision and the reasons for it. If any compensation is offered a clear method of calculation will be shown.

The firm must include details of the Financial Ombudsman Service in the final response if dealing with an eligible complainant and a regulated activity, we will:

  • Explain that the complainant must refer the matter to the ombudsman within six months of the date of the final response letter or the right to use this service is lost
  • Indicate whether or not we consent to waive the relevant time limits.

Complaints Settled within 3 business days

Complaints that can be settled to the customer’s satisfaction within 3 business days can be recorded and communicated differently.

Where we consider a complaint to be resolved to the customer’s satisfaction under this section, we will promptly send a ‘Summary Resolution Communication’, being a written communication from us which:

  • refers to the fact that you have made a complaint and informs you that we now consider the complaint to have been resolved to your satisfaction.
  • we will tell you that if you subsequently decide that you are dissatisfied with the resolution of the complaint you may be able to refer the complaint back to us for further consideration or alternatively refer the complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service;
  • Provide the website address of the Financial Ombudsman Service; and
  • Refer to the availability of further information on the website of the Financial Ombudsman Service.

In addition to sending you a Summary Resolution Communication, we may also use other methods to communicate the information where:

  • We consider that doing so may better meet your needs; or
  • You have already been using another method to communicate about the complaint. This may include recorded calls, emails or text messages.

Closing a complaint

We will consider a complaint closed when we have made our final response to you. This does not prevent you from exercising any rights you may have to refer the matter to the Financial Ombudsman Service.

Financial Ombudsman Service

We will co-operate fully with the Ombudsman in resolving any complaints made against us and agree to be bound by any awards made by the Ombudsman. The firm undertakes to pay promptly any fees levied by the Ombudsman.

How Long You Have to Complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service

You have the right to refer your complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service, free of charge – but you must do so within six months of the date the final response letter.

If you do not refer your complaint in time, the Ombudsman will not have our permission to consider your complaint and so will only be able to do so in very limited circumstances. For example, if the Ombudsman believes that the delay was as a result of exceptional circumstances.

Contact:

The Financial Ombudsman Service, Exchange Tower, London E14 9SR

Tel: 0800 023 4567 (free for most people ringing from a fixed line) or 0300 123 9123 (cheaper for those calling using a mobile) or 020 7964 0500 (if calling from abroad)

Email: complaint.info@financial-ombudsman.org.uk

Website: www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk

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For more information please email idealboilers@housechoice.co.uk