TLDR: Fizzy/ Greystar will overpromise and underdeliver, and will not accept responsibility for anything. Maintenance is a mess, stealing from the building is like taking candy from a baby, and most of the amenities they advertised are either nonexistent or inaccessible. If you’re looking for no hassle luxury service, look elsewhere. Terrible company ethos and culture wrapped up in a deceptive package. AVOID Fizzy/ Greystar!
I feel like I’ve aged three years since I moved to East16 in September 2021, because it sure has been one rollercoaster of a ride.
Let me start at the beginning. First of all, when we first got in touch to do a viewing, it was almost impossible to get ahold of anyone in the lettings teams. I called multiple times and sent countless emails over many days, only to be ignored or told it was a bad time and that I’d get a call back. When I finally managed to secure a viewing, we fell in love with the flat itself (on the surface, it seemed perfect…) We quickly found out that only 4 floors in Falconbrook Gardens are actually pet friendly, despite the adverting saying the entire building is. Our options were thus very limited in choosing a unit. The website also did not (and still does not) state that there are any extra charges for a pets — but, having worked in real estate, I sensed there might be some trickery afoot. The lettings agent played coy with us and said they’d check about the pet fee; meanwhile, we put down our non-refundable deposit. Shortly afterwards, we got a call saying it would cost £50 for a dog (£25 for a cat, £40 for two cats, and £75 for two dogs I believe). We agreed as it had been difficult to find somewhere pet friendly and we loved the property.
The dreaded referencing process began. We had the rudest and most incompetent BoB property managers conducting our referencing process, who kept pushing for us to pay 6 months upfront and finding any possible reason to force the matter (the one that landed was my probation period). I tried to suggest proof of savings or an alternative method, as we wanted to keep our money in our accounts. We were made to feel like scum throughout the referencing process (for context, I am a Project Manager in the Civil Service, and my partner is an engineer in the Defence sector, so we hardly have unstable jobs). Nevertheless, we agreed to pay upfront as we were in too deep at this point. The referencing checks were supposedly complete and the contract would soon follow.
A month later, and 1 week to move-in monies being due, we still had no contract. I chased the BoB over and over again, and was fobbed off each time with promises of it being sent in a few days. I finally reached out to another staff member, who informed me that his colleague didn’t complete the referencing process properly, despite us having been told it had been. Thankfully, he sped through it and we were able to move in — but if I hadn’t have chased so intently, we would have ended up in a hotel paying out of pocket like other residents did.
The move in day finally came. Although we picked a Saturday and we were told this would be fine, the BoB changed their mind about working on a weekend and forced me to come in for handover on Friday. This was a 2 hour journey there and back as we were living in Kent at the time, not to mention being in the middle of the stressful moving process. They refused to be flexible and do it earlier in the week, when I was already going to be in London. That same Friday, they handed me a pet agreement — which I had not been sighted on — with a long list of things we couldn’t do with our pet (including put a bed for them on the balcony).
We finally moved in and thought all our troubles were behind us. Little did we know, they were only just beginning.
Our “professionally cleaned” flat had a thick layer of dust over every surface including the windows, bird poo on the balcony, and glue/ paint splattered all over the floor. The quality of the finishings, it became quickly clear, is terrible. The trims, doorframes, and kitchen walls are painted with water-soluble paint, meaning it chips and rubs off with the slightest provocation. The 52-page inventory with 100s of photos (with the pixelation of an early 2000s Nokia) conveniently missed all of this.
Our toilet was overflowing from day one and it took 106 days, 6 planned visits, 4 attended visits, and possibly 8 billion emails to fix this leak, which accounted for over half of our water bill during this period. And we are the lucky ones — the building’s management, which is supposed to be more convenient as it is on-site, is vastly oversubscribed and badly managed.
The first night we couldn’t sleep due the train noise (which was advertised as being silent), so if you’re a light sleeper you need not even read on to find out about about all of the other BS we’ve had to deal with…
Perhaps most worryingly, both buildings have been rife with security issues. One of the two doors to the flats was broken for weeks, and clearly accessible due to the lock being removed for most of that time. It took weeks of begging to get it fixed. Unsurprisingly, we have had thefts of countless packages and personal property, as well as Fizzy’s own TVs and laptops. We have had multiple break-ins, none of which Fizzy has notified us about (instead, we found out through word-of-mouth that Fizzy laptops containing our personal data were stolen).
It’s impressive, actually, how many burglaries occur considering no one can actually find the buildings, which are identical and next to one another. They both have the same Fizzy East16 marketing plastered all over them, but no one thought it would be a good idea to post clear signage with the official block names, as in our addresses. So, even when packages aren’t stolen, they’re constantly delivered to the wrong block or returned to sender. Recently (again, after months of complaining — notice a theme?) they put up a teeny A4 plaque on the side of the building with the block names on it. Needless to say, I doubt emergency services will be able to see that even if they stand right in front of it, let alone from the street. My engineer’s boyfriend’s quick calculations estimate the sign-to-building ratio is approximately that of an ant to a human.
All of these issues would be readily resolvable if we actually had the 24/7 concierge that they advertised. When we had our viewing, there was someone at the desk. Unsurprisingly, this is yet another promise Fizzy has broken and for months there has been no one downstairs. In fact, they moved the desk and chair from our building over to the other one to keep making the same claim to new viewers. Once again after countless complaints, they’ve put a BoB in one of the buildings’ lobbies during working hours. Clearly, this does little to fix all of the aforementioned security and delivery issues, especially as their presence is patchy at best.
Moreover, the gorgeous common spaces which incentivised us to move here, and which are meant to be free for residents to book for private events, are now a chargeable service. Never mind that we are already paying market value with amenities embedded into our rent: if you want to book the Fizzy Club for a few hours it will now cost you hundreds of pounds in fees/ cleaning costs plus a hefty deposit (if, that is, anyone even responds to your booking request in the first place). And if you want to do yoga, be sure to book the room days in advance to give them enough time to manually send you the door’s code. But anyways, who needs yoga with all these hoops you get to jump through?
To top it all off, we have been in regular talks with management and the Head of Marketing and Sales specifically has been a nightmare. She is rude, thoroughly unapologetic, and simply unpleasant. She clearly has no understanding of basic customer service nor any idea how to deescalate a situation of, at least in part, her own making through failures in management. Her favourite game to play is “how far away from me can I throw the blame?”
The only ray of light in an otherwise gloomy fizzy world are some of the BoBs, specifically Jason and Tyrra, who are both really genuine people who really do their best to help us, and the only ones who have actually taken responsibility for anything (although most of it is out of their control). If someone would just give them the keys to the kingdom, that would probably solve a lot of our issues. But alas…
Anyway, if you’re thinking of moving here… just, don’t. The only thing unique Fizzy/ Greystar offer is “pet friendliness” which is limited to only a few floors; the rest is the same old BS of every other London landlord. The only way they are “reinventing” renting is with how much they can charge you to deliver a substandard service. All they care about is money and couldn’t give a monkey’s about their tenants.
Prospective renters: You have been warned.
Sorry, not sorry, Fizzy/ Greystar (look, that’s a non-apology apology I picked up from your Head of Marketing)… There’s only so far a half-hearted bottle of cheap Prosecco can get you.
Please tell us what you like and dislike about this area:
The local area is great, if you stay on the main road. It gets a bit dodgy otherwise. Lots of shops & supermarkets and the area is clearly in the process of being gentrified.
Please share one thing (or more) which you wish you had known before you moved in:
To be honest, most of it is bad and was uncovered after moving in and this is covered in my review.
How has the building management responded to any problems or issues you have raised:
Hannah is the only member of senior management who has made a real attempt to respond in a kind and helpful way. Unfortunately, we are going to need a lot more than that to get this building back on track and a lot of the damage has already been done.