Buyer gets duped out of deposit

2010-03-06 12:52

A PROSPECTIVE home buyer’s struggle to claim a R25 000 refund after a sour deal entered its seventh month this week.
This is after Bahlaorewa Auctioneers and Asset Management reneged on its promise to refund Kwena Molokoa of Tshwane the money he had paid the company to secure property in ­Mamelodi.

The company initially promised to pay the refund on receipt of Molokoa’s proof of payment, but did not.

Last week Steve Sebola, a senior sales agent at Bahlaorewa Auctioneers, said Molokoa had forfeited his deposit because he had failed to comply with the terms of the sale.

The news did not go down well with Molokoa, who accused the company of ­using dirty tricks in order to rob ­consumers of their hard-earned cash.

“To me, this looks like a scam. I was rushed into paying the R25?000 and at the end of the day, the deal was off,” he said.

Molokoa paid the auctioneers the R25?000 when he entered into an agreement to buy the property, which was not sold at an auction in June. This payment represented a 10% ­deposit of the purchase price.

Molokoa said an agent assisted him in completing the offer-to-purchase form and he was told that the attorneys responsible for the transfer would attend to it.

The agent promised to contact Molokoa a week later but when he did not Molokoa contacted Bahlaorewa Auctioneers for clarity and was advised to contact the attorneys.

The attorneys claimed the offer-to-purchase form had not been fully completed and referred Molokoa to the agent for ­further assistance. The agent promised to contact Molokoa, but a week later a ­consultant at the offices claimed the payment was not reflected on their records.

Molokoa provided the firm with proof of payment and the auctioneers promised to contact him.

After a lengthy wait, the agent contacted Molokoa and referred him to the ­attorneys, who denied ever receiving payment. They ­referred Molokoa back to Bahlaorewa Auctioneers.

“I got tired of being sent from one office to the next without assistance. When they could not trace the payment, I decided I would not go ahead with the sale.

“I demanded a refund and they started coming up with stories. Bahlaorewa should just pay back my refund,” said Molokoa.

On February 3, Hotline spoke to Sebola who requested that we send him a written enquiry. We faxed it to his office.

Hotline followed the matter up with him two weeks later and he promised to give us feedback but did not.

When we contacted him, he agreed to refund Molokoa but changed his tune again last week. He said Molokoa would not get the refund because he had failed to comply with the terms of the contract.

Sebola promised to explain the terms of the contract on receipt of an email. The email was delivered to the address he gave us, however no reply was sent to us by the time of going to press.

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