Which Online Letting Agent?
Which online letting agent? Why use an online agent?
A letting agent, albeit high street or online, is all about the services they can offer you. There are so many varying companies that now offer online letting services to landlords, that any sane person trying to evaluate and choose as to which one offers the best will probably end up insane! However, perhaps we can make your Property Rental Simpler by analysing the best services for you. We have looked closely at many agents over the years and have now moulded our letting model at TR Online Lettings around the best package to serve the hands on landlord. TR Online Lettings really is in a class of its own when offering landlords the complete package for the best price, and here is why:
To start there are two general types of agents, the high street agent and the online letting agent. These agents differ in the amount of effort and contact a landlord wants with their rental property and their future tenants. A landlord who is looking for a total management of their property, where they do not get involved with a tenant at all, should opt for a full management contract with a local high street agent at a set monthly fee. This cost is usually a set fee at the outset followed by a percentage of the rent each month.
The alternative choice of an online letting agent is for the landlord who wants to maximise their yield/income and be hands on with their tenant. The online letting agent allows the landlord to be involved in all aspects of the tenancy and with the tenants from the outset at the initial viewing stage. They should choose an online letting agent who advertises their property for rent and does most of the pre tenancy checks leading up to the issuing of the Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement.
As more legislation and taxes are introduced to the PRS (Private Rented Sector) and margins are cut finer, more and more landlords are choosing to be hands on and select an online letting agent. Landlords are also taking control of their letting because they feel they need to be more involved and also feel they can do as good a job (if not better) than a letting agent and save money in the process. To achieve these objectives, landlords are looking for the support of an online letting company that can get them a tenant, sort out the referencing and get them a good rent guarantee & legal expenses insurance cover at the best price and, in all instances, help them with tenancy agreements, deposit protection, gas safety and the mind field of legislation associated in letting a property.
The key to selecting an online letting agent is to make sure the quality of services they offer are top notch and the third party service providers to their agent are the best possible, to ensure that you are not being handed a second rate service just because the agent has negotiated a good deal for them based purely on price.
The first thing to understand is that all online letting agents seem to offer a variation of the same service, you get long established online letting companies like UPAD that outsource their services and when promoting their wares to landlords they will boast that they offer the best services available. However when we looked closer the truth is the services may not be the best at all and landlords really need to look at who the underwriters/providers of the services being offered by the agent. This point is really important because online letting agents who go for the cheapest service providers, especially when referencing invariably, are not getting you the best service and no landlord wants to get a bad deal on a tenant just because the agent they use is getting a good deal on the price that they are buying the service in for.
There are many companies that offer you a full package and most will offer you something free; “The Bait”. The bait is used to hook you in and capture your details. You will see most of the companies that use the bait tactic are the heavy advertisers on Google. You will see these companies at the tops of the search engines with a small AD along side their name. Be careful with these companies because they have not earned their status organically, they have paid to be at the top and therefore may not give you the best service. These companies are usually run by internet entrepreneurs looking for a big data audience to sell on to another provider at a massive profit – this is known as the short term turn. You will see this sort of company advertise massively for a few years, build up a huge landlord database of clients and then try and float it on the stock market based on potential clients. PurpleBricks and Tepilo are recent examples of this type of company. Their primary function is not to give the landlord the best service; they are only interested in your data and for example, a very prominent advertiser on Google is a company called Open Rent. Open Rent will offer you the first property advert free just to capture your contact details and then the mandate is sell, sell, sell as they need to sell you as many bolt-on services as possible. But once you start looking at the overall cost and services they provide you with, you realise that the services they offer are not of the best quality and the costs then start to accumulate as they take off their slice of the cake.
Companies that use ‘bait offers’ will advertise your property and then simply pass on any enquiry to you on a pingback basis. The tenant enquiry will not be vetted by a trained industry professional and, when referencing, the referencing is the most basic three point reference – 1. financial 2. employer via phone and 3. previous landlord as given by the tenant again over the phone. This reference procedure is not at all thorough and problems start here, because sub-standard referencing means a sub-standard tenant for a landlord from the start and for the future. It is at this point a landlord can really lose their shirt if not careful.
Many bait offering online letting companies simply cannot support a quality service at the price they offer and they certainly cannot give you a good service if that service is free. However, service providers to letting agents like Homelet are offering a complete referencing service to agents for just £15. The figures simply do not stack up; it is impossible to carry out a safe and thorough tenant reference for £15. A comprehensive tenant reference can take as much as an hour sifting through bank statements, evidence documents and reference reports and therefore companies that purport to be able to offer a full comprehensive tenant referencing service for just £15 simply cannot be doing the job efficiently. It is like asking a solicitor to defend your case, read the evidence, cover the disbursement costs and come up with a conclusive defence in 10 minutes and at a cost of £15 – it is impossible!
The interest with these companies does not lie in quality of service it relies on quantity, volume, based on a put through on a back to back basis, this business model is based on the early Tesco style; “Rack em high dented tins and all and sell em cheap!” They use this method so everyone passes referencing and so they can sell you the real money spinner; the rent guarantee insurance and renewals. It is a simple case of ‘spread betting’ tenants and is great for the suppliers profits but it means that eventually some landlords end up with the pup and if you get the pup tenant it costs you thousands and many sleepless nights. Spread betting, rack em high tenant referencing is not a good application for you to employ when looking for a good tenant because, like Russian Roulette, their is always one bullet in the chamber heading your way.
So we have always made sure TRlettings.co.uk are the one online letting agent that continually stands out from the crowd. This recently created online letting agent portal is a supply and demand bi-product of Tenantreferencinguk.com. It was started because of demand by the members of landlordreferencing.co.uk to offer the 30,000+ members of a full letting package and this is why they are so good. Tr lettings uk.co.uk will do exactly the same as the others when advertising your property on Rightmove, Zoopla and all the other portals on the internet. But from the very start TR lettings are different because as the enquiries come in from tenants, they start the unique vetting process to ensure you get the very best tenants from the start. Unlike other online letting agent systems, they do not just pingback the leads; they pre-vet them to ensure they only give you tenants that are suitable to you and your property. This saves you time and money on wasted viewings and costly referencing failures.
Once the tenant has been selected by a landlord then, included in the package, TR Online Lettings instruct their own UK leading nationally recognised as the best tenant referencing company tenant referencing uk.com to commence referencing on the landlords selected and preferred tenant.
Tenant referencing UK.com is in-house within the TR group and the referencing process is recognised as the best practise tenant referencing in the UK. Teams work alongside one another, hand in hand sharing data, so no stone is unturned when referencing tenants by this company. Tenant Referencing UK.com are the only company in the UK that offers unique data sharing landlords referencing histories, so not only do they do all the traditional referencing plus checking bank statements etc, but they carry out all the right to rent immigration checks. If you ever thought “why do we not have a national list of bad tenants” then be enlightened we do, and with over 500,000+ unique tenant histories (and growing more every day) that have been uploaded over seven years by landlords and letting agents across the UK. This referencing for landlords is the best on the market.
Tenant referencing UK are so thorough that they even produce all the references to the landlord in archives on the landlords dashboard as they do them. Showing a landlord all the references and corresponding paperwork, like bank statements as they progress with the reference, means a landlord can really see they are getting what they paid for.
This service is extraordinarily thorough and transparent and leaves no stone un-turned. The referencing techniques used by Tenant Referencing UK are un-paralleled in tenant referencing in the UK by any other company today. Once the referencing is finished they will offer you their bespoke rent guarantee & legal expenses cover to keep you safer than any other company around.
The company that offers the Rent Guarantee Policy is RentsafeUK.co.uk and once again this company is owned by the TR group, so once again your entire insurance is controlled under one roof making the application and claims process a leader in the market. RentsafeUk.co.uk policies come with £50,000 cover on each claim and covers legal expenses, should you need to evict a tenant. In the event of a claim the underwriter will nominate and pay a solicitor to get on with the eviction whilst paying the rent to you.
TR Online lettings offers you the best package for online lettings and they will do it for the best price in the market at just £145 all inclusive of Advertising your property, Referencing your Tenant and even includes 1 years Rent Guarantee Insurance.
TR Online lettings can provide all the other services you will require like registering deposits, tenancy agreements, EPC’s, Inventories, gas safe certificates, etc and you even get free support from accredited landlords and letting agents with 25 years experience at the end of the phone on 0800 9994 994 to help you with any problems you might have.
When you use TR Online Letting as part of the TR Group you even get access to your own property management system free. You can add reminders to all your important documents and certificates, like your gas safe renewal, so we can keep you safe by reminding you in the future.
If you are looking for an honest online letting agent that provides you with all the best services you need to let your property, coupled with service providers that will assist you with all aspect of letting your property at the best price in the market; then take a look at TR lettings.co.uk.
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