When landlords need help with their properties, they often turn to letting agents. These rental property experts can help landlords in a myriad different ways, and many letting agents will essentially take over management of a property from the landlord entirely.
But when landlords can theoretically handle everything themselves, what does a letting agent do to justify the need for them?
What are letting agents?
Letting agents deal with property much like estate agents, but with a different focus. They help landlords with property that is rented out to tenants, rather than the private sale of homes between individuals.
Because of this, letting agents tend to provide their services on a more ongoing basis. Whereas estate agent involvement is typically done once a house sale is closed, property lets collect income continuously and can see many different tenants come and go.
What do letting agents do?
Letting agents responsibilities can vary depending on the kind of service they offer for landlords. There are several different levels of involvement for letting agents, which landlords are free to choose based on how much time they can dedicate to the property themselves.
This is arguably the most basic service offered by letting agents. A tenant find means that the letting agent assists in sourcing a tenant (or tenants) for the property on behalf of the landlord.
They’ll advertise the property to ensure this happens as swiftly as possible, as well as conducting the viewings for potential candidates, conducting references, collecting the first package of rent, and everything else leading up to the tenant being officially moved in. From there, everything else is left up to the landlord.
This is an ongoing service that sees the agent managing rent payments on behalf of the landlord.
The letting agent will be responsible for collecting the rent payments and protecting deposits. The agent will also manage issues surrounding payments such as chasing arrears and helping the landlord deal with tenants who repeatedly delay or miss their rent payments.
Fully managed services sees the letting agent handling everything on behalf of the landlord. This means that the agency will be the primary contact for any queries and issues for the tenants.
As well as assisting tenants with moving in and out, securing deposits, and collecting rent payments, the agent will deal with property maintenance, inspections, and help to organise anything the landlord does for the property such as replacing furniture or making property alterations.
Fully managed services are best for landlords who can’t dedicate the necessary time to overseeing their property, and they’re a service you can trust best when left in the hands of an accredited agency.
Some agencies—like Mistoria—have ARLA Propertymark Protection which proves trustworthiness and the highest degree of expertise in property management. Agencies with these protections are definitely worth taking the higher points on your list of possible help.
How do I choose a letting agent?
As with estate agents and other forms of help with your properties, you likely want to choose somebody local. This allows you to rely on an agent with sound knowledge of the area and who isn’t too far removed from the property itself, which is helpful for viewings and responding to maintenance queries.
Aforementioned accreditations like Propertymark should definitely be factored in when considering agencies. They’ve been sought out by the agency—and awarded by the body itself—for good reason. Agents can make all kinds of promises about their standards, but accreditations and awards prove them directly.
Don’t just choose the first letting agent that comes your way. Like with many things, you should shop around and compare what’s on offer. Different agents will charge different rates for their work, and given that your property is likely primarily an investment, you want to ensure you’re getting good returns for the added assistance.
Why choose Mistoria
Mistoria Estate Agents work nationwide to support tenants and landlords, with offices in Bolton, Cheadle, Liverpool, Manchester, Salford, and Worsley ready to assist in all types of property queries.
We’re an award-winning and highly accredited business for good reason—to find out why or to learn more about our available services, contact us today.