Being a landlord requires more time and effort than most people think. In fact, it’s a full-time job. Landlords must make themselves constantly available to ensure tenant needs are catered for, the property is maintained to a high standard, and the latest guidelines are complied with.
However, not all landlords can devote the time and resources required. That is where Letting Agents come in. A respectable agency can enable you to turn a profit on the property without any of the stress and still achieve high client satisfaction ratings.
How to choose a letting agency that is right for me?
Location is key. It’s always best to choose a letting agency that is located within a reasonable distance to your property. If your agent is based in London and the property is in Hitchin, Hertfordshire then it is unlikely that you will be able to benefit from a comprehensive service.
On the other hand, if you partner with a local agent not only will you benefit from their expert local knowledge, but you can rest assured that should anything happen to your property, there will be someone on location to help in the shortest possible time.
What level of service do you require?
Letting agencies typically offer varying levels of services. All agencies will offer a standard tenant finding service, perfect for landlords that would like to avoid the stress of interviewing suitable tenants but would like to retain some management of the property.
Others will offer a comprehensive service. This will not only include tenant sourcing, but tenant referencing, maintenance, rent collection, and post tenant cleaning services. Meaning that although you are the property owner, your involvement with the day-to-day running of it is minimal.
when selecting a letting agent to manage your property, think about the services that you would like managed and match agencies to those requirements.
A sign of a good letting agency is a well-executed marketing strategy. Look online at the way the letting agency advertise the properties under their management, will you be satisfied with the language used, the care taken to photograph the property? After all, an empty property or a property with poor quality tenants will end up costing you money.
If an agency is proactive in promoting its properties as well as itself then it is usually a safe bet that they will offer a higher level of service. You could also look at whether the agency has been recognised for its services with awards and certifications.
Money Protection Schemes
Unfortunately, not all letting agents have their landlords’ best interests at heart, in the past, some criminal letting agencies have scammed the landlords they have been working with. While this is by no means a common occurrence, it is always best to be safe.
Ask the agency to provide proof that they are a member of a client protection scheme. These schemes are required by law in England, and they provide compensation to the landlord and tenant if the agency cannot pay the money owed.
It should be a given that all letting agents conduct regular inspections on their clients’ properties, but sadly this is often not the case. Property inspections should be a priority, they give landlords complete peace of mind that their tenants are happy, and their building is safe and in a good state of repair.
Landlords looking to partner with a letting agent should ask about property inspections and how regular they will be carried out. We would recommend inspections every 6 months for new tenants and once a year for long-term tenants.
M A S O N S | The Letting Experts
If you are a landlord looking to rent out a property in Hertfordshire, contact us today!
We offer our expertise in finding tenants and managing properties across the county, including towns such as Hitchin, Letchworth, Stotfold and the surrounding areas.
Contact us by email at: [email protected] Or by phone at: 01462 557 477