Obviously a high rental income is important for landlords, but 23 years’ of experience has certainly taught me the importance of getting the ‘right’ tenant rather than ‘just any’ tenant, which is why we actively seek quality properties, as they usually attract quality tenants, which avoids problems further down the line.
To me, it is very straight forward – landlords need to provide quality properties that they maintain to a high standard, agents need to provide a good service throughout the tenancy to both the landlord and tenant, and tenants need to pay their rent on time, in full and look after the property. This is the formula for a successful tenancy and ensures a good relationship between all parties.
In a recent survey from Zoopla, over 50% of landlords listed ‘quality of tenants’ as their most important need, while less than a third were interested in how many tenants a letting agent has on their books. Clearly, quality is prioritised over quantity, as good quality tenants are likely to cause fewer issues for landlords.
It is quite extraordinary that there are still landlords and tenants that focus on the fee and not on the service they will receive. The truth is that anyone can advertise a property online to try and find a tenant, but landlords should be looking for an experienced agent that can market their property in order to source a good quality tenant – someone who will pay their rent in full and on time, whilst looking after their property. As a letting agent, this is our fundamental role, but landlords should also look for an agent who is fully up-to-date on the legal side of things in order to fully protect their income, interests and property. For example the Government’s ‘How to Rent’ guide has just been updated, failure to provide the updated version to tenants could mean that landlords are not able to serve notice should they need the property back.
My advice to landlords and tenants is ‘do your homework first’. When most of us go to book a holiday, we turn to sites like TripAdvisor to gain an impartial review before making a decision. If you are choosing a letting agent surely you would do the same and visit third party review sites such as Trustpilot to see the reviews of others. Time spent researching at this stage will not go to waste and should ensure a smooth tenancy for all parties.
If you have considered letting a property, and would like some initial advice, feel free to contact us on 01252 514000 or email email@example.com.