Tag: lettings

Viewing Time

Viewing Time

Most landlords will recognise the tremendous importance of ensuring that as many prospective tenants as possible see their property. After all, more viewings means more tenant competition thereby maximising your chances of securing the highest rental the market will pay.

However, whilst one always has to be fair, there is a lot to be said for strategic viewing! A good letting agent will advise their clients to be selective when arranging a time for prospective purchasers to view the property. Indeed, if you are letting a property in which you have yourself lived, you are well placed to know when the best times of day are. Here are a few tips:

–   Is the property on a school route? If so, during term time, it might be best to avoid the morning and afternoon drop-off and pick up times. If you are very close to a school, is it noisy during break-time?
–    Likewise is the property near a pub, sports ground, or factory, which can have crowds of rowdy people spilling onto the street at certain times.
–    Consider which way the property faces. Bright accommodation and a sunny garden are great letting points, so choose times when the position of the sun is at its best. Perhaps a follow-up viewing is best organised for a different time of day to highlight a feature that might have been missed initially.

Nevertheless, do remember that letting agents and landlords alike have a duty of care not to misrepresent, so if there is an issue, such as predictable noise at certain times of day, then this should be disclosed. However, the importance of a good first impression cannot be overstressed, to the extent that many people will dismiss a minor inconvenience after having first fallen in love with a property they would love to rent – hopefully yours!

© Copyright 2017 Richard Rawlings except as excluded under licence. 

Getting Rentals Right

Getting Rentals Right

Just as anyone can open up an estate agency, so they can also start up a lettings business, without any training, experience or qualifications. This should concern landlords, because there is far more to the business than meets the eye. In some ways, finding a tenant is the easy bit!

The issues arise over how selective the agency is when recommending a tenant. For example, what is the tenant’s credit history? They may impress by offering a large deposit, but will their payments be reliable in the future? They might tell you their intention is to stay for two years, but will they give notice after six months? Will they fail to pay their final month’s rent as a way of enforcing the return of their deposit? Will they treat your property as if it were their own? Would they prove difficult to evict if need be, as court orders can take months?

Whilst no agent can avoid all these scenarios all the time, good lettings agents have a pretty good track record in how well they vet their tenants, and will visit the property regularly to ensure everything is ok. They will also be able to offer insurance covering damages, non-payment of rent, and even compensation for tenant-free voids. Additionally, they will recognise their duty to tenants by helping landlords to fulfil their obligations.

Your buy-to-let investment should deliver the optimal return with minimal involvement and stress on your part, and appointing the right letting agent is part of this investment. A good investment can make you money, but a bad investment can actually lose you money. Why not give us a call for the best advice in the area?

© Copyright 2017 Richard Rawlings except as excluded under licence. 

Getting the Most out of Your Property Investment

Getting the Most out of Your Property Investment

Superficially, lettings could be seen as relatively straightforward, and some firms do indeed regard themselves as a simple broking operation.

However, if your investment is going to provide you with peace of mind as well as a great return on investment, then you will want to know that the property is being managed by people who really care.

Our response to the ever-growing rentals market has been to take a good look at the opportunity to deliver a service to landlords which not only meets expectations, but goes way beyond. Indeed, many of our clients have commented that they have found our lettings service to be a “breath of fresh air” when compared to their previous experience!

For example, it is critical that all prospective tenants are thoroughly vetted and credit checked in order to ensure that they will not only pay the rent on time, but that they will also look after your property as if it were their own, if not better!  Indeed, we are passionate about this issue, and during every tenancy we regularly visit the property personally. This not only means that we can keep an eye on how the tenants are treating it, but also allows us to advise you if any preventative maintenance should be undertaken (eg gutters cleared).

We find this ongoing relationship with your tenants is also an excellent way of showing them that you care, resulting in them treating you and your investment with the utmost respect, resulting in an optimum return and a peaceful night’s sleep! After all, that’s what a good letting agent is all about!

So when choosing a letting agent, why not choose the one who regards every property as if they owned it themselves? Why not call us for an initial chat on 01926 436111.

© Copyright 2017 Richard Rawlings except as excluded under licence. 

Protecting your Rent…and your Investment

Protecting your Rent…and your Investment

One of the most important aspects to consider when choosing a letting agency is whether or not they subscribe to a Client Money Protection Scheme. There have been several examples of unscrupulous letting agents who have mysteriously closed holding many thousands of pounds in client monies – primarily rental receipts that should have been paid over to the landlord.

According to the National Approved Letting Scheme (NALS) it is estimated that residential letting agents currently hold £14 billion in client monies but only when it is too late do consumers consider asking their agent whether the monies are held in a designated client account and whether they have the necessary insurance in place to protect that money in the event that the firm were to experience financial difficulties, or if the money were misappropriated.

Whilst deposits from tenants have been protected by way of the Deposit Protection Scheme introduced in 2007, there is no mandatory framework for the protection of rents actually received.
There are currently approximately 8,000 to 10,000 agents in the private residential sector, of which only around 40 per cent come under any regulatory framework and can offer the necessary protection to consumers. Member firms of NALS and the professional bodies, Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA), the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), must meet clearly defined criteria as a condition of their accreditation or membership, which includes Client Money Protection cover.

As you might expect, we have full accreditation and all our rents are fully protected for our clients’ security so you can sleep easy knowing your investment is in safe hands.

© Copyright 2017 Richard Rawlings except as excluded under license.