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Dear All:

Copied from another poster:


My name is Jonathan Welford, I am a property specialist with over ten years property sales and lettings experience, for the last three years I have written a weekly property column for the Manchester Evening News. I have presented and appeared on property TV shows, both regionally and nationally in the UK. I ran a successful property management company for many year in Manchester, so I know what I am talking about, I know what level of service should be given and I know when I am dealing with someone that isn’t delivering.

Let me tell you our story, in May 2010 we were flown out by Oracle Properties on a viewing trip with a view to buy a holiday home. They paid for our flights, transfers, accommodation and hospitality. For three days we were whisked around sparkling new apartments and show homes. We were tempted, very tempted. Our guide was a friendly and a wonderfully gifted sales person. We were shown glistening swimming pools, newly fitted kitchens and dinned out at the best restaurants in the area, we were nearly one of the masses that fall hook line and sinker and put a deposit down. But we didn’t, we thought about it. We were taking a year out next year after just hours off the plane. However sensibilities kicked in, we’d planned a year out for 2011 so decided that we’d rent and see what it’s like and what I am about to tell you will reveal why this was the best decision I have ever made.

According to the Oracle website, www.oracletravel.com

‘From the moment you make your booking to the time you return from your holiday, you will benefit from our professional experience, friendly service and attention to detail’

Before we arrived in January 2011 we confirmed, double confirmed, triple confirmed, quadruple confirmed, well you get the picture from October 2010 even up until the day we left the UK on that dark cold winters day in January, that our furnished holiday apartment (for the period 10th January 2011 – 10 October 2011) rented from Oracle would have the key essentials for us and they assured that this would be done and would be read and waiting for our arrival, these priorities were :-

* Internet

* TV with English Speaking Channels

We expected without having to ask

* A clean apartment

Unfortunately when we arrived, the apartment was filthy, with rubbish in cupboards, used sanitary products in the drawers, a film of grease across most of the surfaces, Wind was blowing the curtain in a Hammer House of Horror style through the wide open windows and patio doors, the apartment was freezing! On top of a dirty, unclean apartment the internet wasn’t connected or even cabled in and the television didn’t work.

The internet was eventually installed. However we were lied to from the start, we were told apartment owners had an option to have the internet installed for a one off fee of £100 when they complete, this was meant to be one of those apartments It had to be fitted, a chap with filthy overalls drilled a hole in the side of the apartment and lassoed the satellite dish on the roof to plug it into (nice and technical I am sure). We weren’t convinced of it’s reliability and had to have someone come out a dozen or so times as it wasn’t done correctly and we lost connection frequently for the first couple of months. We were fobbed off by Gail, she a blond Scottish woman who apparently married one of the brothers that own Oracle, we were told, ‘we wanted to see if you liked the apartment’ (we accepted the apartment 3 months before based on the photographs sent and confirmation it had all we required in it), when in reality the property hadn’t been fitted at all at any point.

The television was taken away for repair, and we were charged 100 Turkish Lira for a new dish to be clamped to the balcony railing (as the communal one didn’t work). To get the television repaired was a struggle in itself. Only when I gave the ultimatum to Gail, whose frosty smile turned quickly into a snarl; that unless it was repaired or replaced they could give us our rent back along with all our travel costs returned and we’ll go our separate ways did it eventually get returned five days after it was taken away.

A woman came around to re-clean the apartment with a dirty mop, no cleaning products and with two gruff men in tow with no conceivable role apart from watching her drag a dirty mop around the apartment. We sent her away and spend our first full day in Turkey cleaning the apartment from top to bottom, two of us spending 6 hours doing it. Not a particularly pleasant start to our wonderful year abroad. If we hadn’t cleaned for the whole period we’d rented it for it would still be cleaner than when we got it!

Pretty much the moment we moved in, in January mould starting growing on the en-suite bathroom ceiling and kitchen (the terrace above failed when the drains became blocked and the water drained through the concrete to our internal ceiling) after repeatedly speaking to office (the constantly unhelpful Gail) and frequent emails asking when it was going to be fixed (I even went as far as sending pictures to show how serious it was). Three dirty clothed men arrived bring with them a smoky funk cloud looked at the mould that now covered the ceiling, shrugged and left, leaving the acrid and bar dreg smell with us. A couple more weeks passed and when I questioned Oracle was told by Gail that ‘we’re waiting on an insurance claim‘ we made numerous phone calls and emails then gave up calling from the end of February. We scrubbed the tiled walls until our hands stunk of disinfectant and cleaning products, eventually came off after 2 hours of cleaning but the ceiling mould refused to budge.

A few weeks in to our stay the oven started shorting out all the electrics every time we switched it on, we had one workman that came out and fixed it, to the extent that if you didn’t wear shoes when touching it you got an electric shock. Being told this is normal by the contractor, the satellite box did the same and we shrugged considering this as a quirk of Turkey! A week later the buttons on the front of the oven sunk into the cooker front, another workman came out and fixed the buttons, but to the detriment of the hob no longer functioned, again we notified Oracle. Three separate workman came out that day, the final one fixed the hob but warned us not to have the electric oven on when it was up against the wall as the heat would cause the gas pipe that feeds the hob to melt and ultimately explode. We reported this to Oracle, and they arranged another contractor to come out. I requested a qualified contractor come out, as the men that came previously did not look or act qualified, one of them delivers the water bottles on a truck and I’ve seen the other one doing contract gardening around the development. The oven is still not safe, the workman that was meant to come back to fix it didn’t come, so to use it we have to drag it out a foot from the wall as it is in danger of causing an explosion as the fourth contractor that came out in the same day got the hob working but said it wasn’t safe. As with the mould on the ceiling, it’s still there, we’d given up complaining about it, is this a format Oracle use? Is it in their training manual ‘Keep stuffing up things/failing to get things fixed and they’ll eventually go away or the customer will give up trying’ !? Or, is it, as I personally suspect, is that they have no training and no real idea of how to run a property management company? Once they’ve got the money off the customer they really couldn’t careless!

Our apartment was pitched to us as one of the ‘range of quality apartments’ that is also so eloquently advertised on the Oracle website (Turkey Holiday Homes and Apartment Rentals | Oracle Travel) Worryingly they also say to people buying that Landlords who trust their property’s to be managed by Oracle stating ‘All customers’ rentals will have a 24 hours contact number in resort to sort out any problem quickly and efficiently.’ Also customers can benefit from ‘professional experience, friendly service and attention to detail.’ They have a 24 hour contact number that is true but the rest of that statement, in my experience, does NOT deliver! If I was to buy a property out in Turkey I would not trust Oracle with property managing, they can do air port transfers well, they can wine, dine and give you the sales patter but once the cheque has cleared they don’t seem to care.

On the 13th July 2011 the air-conditioning unit in the bedroom stopped working, we immediately reported it, and was promised a next day contractor, then an apologetic email saying the earliest that would be available was Monday. On the second sleepless night, after the heat was unbearable due to temperatures reaching 38 degrees during the day with a hot wind coming from the mountains we had the windows open but to no avail. We tried to get an earlier appointment after two consecutive nights without sleep for the contractor to come out but was told that this couldn’t be possible, and Monday was the earliest. (Please note: Oracle continually say that they’re the best company in the area. But they can’t organize an air-conditioning engineer in holiday season…. The term ‘Piss up in a brewery’ springs to my mind. Would you not think a company of that size and importance would have some weight in town?) Grudgingly we agreed, and asked what time, being told that no time could be gained, and that we’d have to spend the day in waiting. No one came, no apology was offered. Two emails were sent that day, one at 12 noon when a sharp email reply from Gail came through saying she couldn’t confirm a time and another reply to a rather concerned email from me at 3.30pm was replied at 4pm from The Managing Director, Izzet Donmez said ’They keep saying they are very busy‘. I have received a succession of weak and feeble excuses from this chap along the same line.

So is this is a marvelous show of problem solving and being dealt with speed and efficiency? In my opinion this is a resounding no.

We have now been given Wednesday as a day where they can come out, when I asked if this would be guarantee it would happen I was told ‘We will chase them on Wednesday no guarantees’- how’s that for the friendly service and attention to detail?

Are we expected to live with out air conditioning not working as we have had to with the condemned oven and black mold covering the ceiling? It would seem that is what Oracle expect. We currently rent a three-bedroom apartment and sleep on the floor of the living room, as this is the only room in the apartment with a working air conditioning unit.

‘All customers’ rentals will have a 24 hours contact number in resort to sort out any problem quickly and efficiently.’ -http://www.oracleproperties.co.uk/rental-management.html

I am one of those customers, who have reported a problem to that 24 hour contact number, the ceiling with mold still growing has been like that for over five months, the oven has been condemned for the same amount of time and the air-conditioning which was reported as broken on 13th July and a call out was promised 5 days later.

I asked if they would have the same level of customer service for holidaymakers? Someone could be spending their hard earned money for their one holiday a year to come in the sun, only to have it ruined with not having any comfort in their rented apartment. Sleeping in this climate without air-conditioning is unbearable and I definitely need it for a sound nights sleep. If I was told that it wouldn’t be fixed until after my holiday that would mean that my holiday was ruined. My question to Oracle about how they would treat a holidaymaker, unsurprisingly this question still hangs in the air unanswered.

A couple of months ago the water pump failed, there is an unusual situation with this building (I’m uncertain if this is a standard thing in Turkey) where the water pressure isn’t strong enough to get to the apartments naturally, so a pump is used to service the buildings, there had been loss of pressure a few times during our stay, and when the power goes out so does the water. So, the pump broke a few months ago, and we were without water for two days, it got to a point where the phone line was engaged and emails to Oracle weren’t being answered, getting any information of anyone was difficult. We were getting to the point of booking into a hotel as we couldn’t cope without water, it was unhygienic and we just felt grimy and dirty. I was snapped at, by the delightfully condescending, Gail (she really shouldn’t be in a customer service role, customers seem to annoy her and service just isn’t in her capacity to deliver). Gail stated she didn’t know when it would be fixed. However when the local media had started getting interested in the story the pump was repaired/replaced.

So to summarize the features I have experienced from Oracle Properties and their office have been:-

* Appalling levels and quality of customer service

* A dirty apartment

* A condemned Oven

* Mold growing on the ceiling

* Broken air conditioning unit

* Frequent problems with the water delivery system (for 48 hours on one occasion, which isn’t healthy or hygienic)

The landlord of our apartment came across for a visit and spoke with us, after being told by Oracle that we complain a lot (yes! About the same thing you keep stuffing up!). He was horrified to see the problems with the ceiling and hear about the oven, and after this tenancy is going to remove the property from Oracles management. He’d been billed twice to a value of £80 for the oven that had not been fixed and had been condemned (how’s that for property management and looking after your investment!)

When speaking with other owners that live in the development is that they are in the process on taking the building management out of Oracles full control, with them managing the upkeep but not the money. The legal documentation is in the pipeline and has been submitted. They’ve asked a series of questions regarding the accounts, and where their money has been spent. The one question that has been banded around is ‘Why does the bank account change each year? And why was it a personal account?’ This does sound slightly unusual, people were asking questions as the last bank account was in a channel island destination. This year it’s been changed to a London Account in the business name, perhaps after people asked Oracle owners decided to change? Who knows, in fairness that aspect is none of my business, but it should be a question any future purchaser should ask before signing on the dotted line for your ‘quality apartment’

Would I recommend Oracle to anyone? Yes… and I have to all of the national press contacts I have, along with BBC TVs ‘Watchdog’, and the production company for ‘Landlords from Hell’ and ‘Holiday Homes from Hell.’ I have emailed off to all the production companies offering to go on camera and on the record to discuss the bad treatment we have experienced.

Would we buy in Turkey? Mmm the locals are friendly but overwhelmingly due to our experience with Oracle our answer would be a resounding no.

Oracle bill themselves as the best in the area, and they list that there are over 500 agents in the area, they are one of many developers and although I wouldn’t trust the build quality to last generation, you ultimately get what you pay for. I would say that the properties over here are concrete pre-fabs, in the UK there are still pre-fabs being lived in longer than the originally specified 10 years, but would you want to live in one? Greece across the Aegean has ruins that are hundreds of years old; they look in better shape than some of Turkeys properties that are a fraction of that age.

The reason this website was set up was so that anyone looking to do any research on Oracle they would here about our experiences and give them our story so they get a view from someone who feels a dream year off has been spoilt. If you are going to buy from them take note from our experience, you’re putting a great deal of money into an investment and life improving/enhancing purchase, do you want a to by from a company that has treated us this way? And give them the opportunity to treat you in the same way? If you are looking to rent from them for a holiday let? Do you want your holiday ruined by a shoddy managed apartment or villa when things aren’t fixed tarnishing a hard earned holiday away? If our story saves one person from experiencing what we have experienced then the minimal cost of setting up this site has been accomplished.

I will be forwarding this website to every forum on buying property abroad, every Turkish ex pats forum and basically to anyone that will listen. I feel so strongly about how we have been treated that I have been prompted to do this.

It is commonly said that if you have a good experience you tell a couple of people and if you have a bad experience you tell everyone, well this is the start of me telling everyone!



Brian.
 

tinkyman

Member
Oracle Travel Altinkum
what happened to the oracle thread

i am missing something here? why did this guy not post it himself as he threatened to do and what is the connection with brians villa and has he verified the originator as this is pretty damning stuff to post. as he did get internet access out there in the end I would have been posting this a lot earlier and demanding money back. Also if he is this grandiose journalist I have not heard of any of this being publicised anywhere??
 

Bubles1

Member
Oracle Travel Altinkum
Re: Oracle Travel, Altinkum, Turkey

tinkyman:

Brians Villa may be the TLF Screen name of the original poster!!
Why the concern tinkman?
Are you part of Orifice Travel?:36le:

Bubles1.



i am missing something here? why did this guy not post it himself as he threatened to do and what is the connection with brians villa and has he verified the originator as this is pretty damning stuff to post. as he did get internet access out there in the end I would have been posting this a lot earlier and demanding money back. Also if he is this grandiose journalist I have not heard of any of this being publicised anywhere??
 

Summertime

Golden Girls
Oracle Travel Altinkum
Re: what happened to the oracle thread

Dont know, but I went on their website and they have horroundes prices on everything, I copy this prices, very expensive to buy from them.
Just have a look at the prices. 577.50 pounds for military search.

Last year I payed about 200 pounds for the same ( not Oracle) For water and elec connection I payed 350 pounds.

Additional Costs Example-2 Bedroom

Property Purchase Price- £35,000
Purchase tax 3.3%- £1155
Military Search £577.50
Power of attorney £130
Title deed application fee £150
Translator- £70
Utilities
Electricity connection fee £250
Water connection fee £250
Mandatory Insurance yearly approx £40
Council tax yearly approx £50
Total Closing Cost- £2.672.50

Solicitor Fees (depending on services required ) from 500
 
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giglets

Member
Oracle Travel Altinkum
Re: what happened to the oracle thread

Bubles1,

I take it you are NOT Jonathan Welford, judging by your second post.

Can you give some more details as to how and from where you obtained his original post, as the owner of this site may be held liable if the content is not accurate.
 

Bubles1

Member
Oracle Travel Altinkum
Last edited:

giglets

Member
Oracle Travel Altinkum
Re: what happened to the oracle thread

Thank you.

Your thread can remain until Mushtaq has a chance to assess it himself.
 

Katrina

Member
Oracle Travel Altinkum
Hi Guys,

This is the first time I have logged in here for many months and I have to say I just cannot see why Brians Villa has to copy and paste 18 month "old news" which was written by someone who obviously had some personal grievances with Oracle.

Well, Boo Hoo

I have been living in Didim for 6 years and have several friends who have purchased properties on various developments around the town and two of them are still awaiting their Tapu’s even though they have paid all their money.
I have just come back from the solicitors with one of my friends who is spending thousands more on solicitors and back-handers trying to get her habitation certificate.

For all the time I have been here, Oracle have had a good name in the town and to my knowledge everyone has always received their Tapu’s.

So while some of us who are getting upset about their friends throwing even more money they cannot afford away at getting their property legalised - do we all really benefit from someone copying and pasting 18 month articles about dirty overalls and AC’s that do not work?

Lets move on Brians Villa - I think a little bit of perspective thinking is called for.

If we all stay in a room talking about gloomy days - tomorrow will be a gloomy day.
 
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tinkyman

Member
Oracle Travel Altinkum
Re: Oracle Travel, Altinkum, Turkey

tinkyman:

Do you know of Anal Houses and Orifice Travel:roundgrin.
You seem to be concerned for their well being:224xb:.

Bubles1

and you seem hell bent on destroying their well being.
I have no concerns either way regarding Oracle travel and i really do object to your insinuations above. I am into nothing anal and am going to take this further.
I believe I was right to question the validity of the one sided thread that was started and have to ask if Katrinas information was right then why has it been raked up again?
I just think it wrong to slag businesses off when it could prove to be groundless. it is happenning too much on these forums. I would like to see this thread removed (along with some of the people who posted on it)
 
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